Thursday, 29 August 2013

Where's my Doughnut??

Hello people,

No gaming this week unfortunately as I was a way with work for a couple of days and Dark Heresy got cancelled as a couple of the boys got kept late. No big deal just happens but it does mean that rather than another dose of blamanche doughnuts you get a bit of random-ish chatter.

Striaight to case from painting station?
As briefly mentioned previously I'm almost through all of my Dreadzone teams, it's down to just highlighting up the Forge Fathers and finishing off the MDF pitch. After that it's LOTR Orc, Uruk and Gobbo time until the Zombiecide horde arrives on the doorstep.

With season 3 of Dreadball rocking up I'll be going for the Nameless, cos tentacles are cool, and probably Teratons, cos who doesn't want teleporting space dinosaurs. With all of that I'm pretty tied up hobby wise in general.

As what I now assume to be a knock on I find myself watching any number of other KickStarters come and go.

There are plenty that have piqued my interest, I recently got very tempted by Incursion, it looks great, the fluff appeals, it's a proven game and I'd get a shedload of figures that I would really enjoy painting up and hopefully get plenty of use from......hopefully!?

Thinking about what I've already got, in cases, in the painting queue and the mountain genuinely put me off adding another box or two into the mix. Looking for cons it's a 2 player boardgame for a minimum $100 plus $35 shipping, going to $195 all in with the SNAFU expansion that I'd want to go for, that feels like a BIG outlay for what I'd seem to be getting back.

In short after backing two projects and jumping on the back of a third I seem to have fallen out of sorts with KS. I just seem to feel a bit jaded with the whole thing especially as it seems to be mainly board and card games coming through recently.....not REAL wargames, which is another topic I've been circling around recently.

I'm sure I'm not really looking hard enough to spot any number of other projects but I'm also not feeling the want or need to. Does it feel like KS is encouraging quick hit one trick ponies or is it just me. Carnavale got pulled as did Antares (very different I know) and I don't intend to re-hash previous commentary but have the naysayers been proved right?

This interests me big-time
As part of my feeling to drive back to what I've known before (the circle of gaming life?) it would be nice to just go and invest in a nice honest product from a nice honest producer. I've has my eye on Hasslfree's expanding White Ops range with growing temptation to use as a catch-all proxy force while Battlefront's apparently upcoming Fate of a Nation would take me somewhere new that I've always wanted to go, though I'd probably go 10mm to cover it all myself.

I'm sure KS hasn't suddenly had it's day for gamers but has the KS phenomenon seen to it that certain games just can't thrive on there? Fast Game Nation??

Just a thought, would be keen to hear yours :)

Monday, 26 August 2013

Kicking up a Stink

Evening people,

Fresh off of the paint station squeal / squack / chitter hello to the Reek-Hole Red-Backs. Really liked the look and feel of the Z'Zor from as soon as I saw them, like the way they play too. Still waiting for a replacement Jack but I have Ludwig to proxy and don't mind a second Gaurd.

Really enjoyed painting these guys, same scheme as Ludwig and really pleased with them. So another 16 Painting Points for a bit of a bumper month. Just the Forge Fathers, maybe tomorrow, and the MDF pitch for a fully painted project. 

Nameless for season 3 and will likely leave it there....likely :) Now I just need to get in a few more games!

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Way of the Exploding D6

Hello people,

Last night at Enfield Gamers I got to play something of a "proper" wargame as Rich ran myself and Shaun through Osprey's new samurai skirmish offering, Ronin

There were fully painted figures, with flocked bases, running around on a 4x4 table covered with a gaming mat, hills, woods, a road, river, broken ground and a walled house plus attendant scatter pieces! I was well chuffed ;)

I also rather enjoyed both games of Ronin that we played. It's a small scale skirmish system with initiative, alternate individual figure activation and plenty of skills and equipment that many such modern day offerings feature. The difference is the resource management element, this time in the combat phase, that is doing so much for the genre these days.

In short every figure / character has a number of Command Points (CP) which are allocated prior to combat as either attack or defence points. Unsurprisingly attack points boost your attack dice pool while defence dice boost your defence dice pool. 
Combat itself is an opposed dice roll with combined attack dice roll + character fight value +/- bonuses vs combined defence dice roll + fight value +/- bonuses + armour. The difference determines severity of wound.

Relatively standard stuff you might think, along with attendant weapon and ability modifiers, but the rub comes in the fact that you allocate CPs blind prior to chat and then reveal simultaneously. This introduces an element if bluff with their use becoming both highly tactical and situational. This the game within the game is created and highly enjoyable it is too :)
Lady Luck still plays her part and did Shaun no favours for most of the evening. There are several lists available and my warrior monks featured a rock hard and tooled warlord with similarly keen Sensei with a couple of very green initiates.

Outnumbered in both games I followed the mantra of mutual support and combats did tend to clump. In both games it was my warlord that did most of the damage whilst the slack-jawsdid their   best to stay alive.

As with most skirmish systems a variety of quality scenarios is key and a number are provided and it wouldn't be difficult to convert over the huge number out there or write your own.
So a good solid system with enough detail and meta to keep you engaged and necessitate proper tactical play whilst still knocking along at a rate of knots. We played two games in the night from a standing start and probably could have had a third. 

You could also use the system for just about any sword, shield and bow or matchlock setting. Add in a bit of "magic" and you can cover the fantasy base too.

With my Dreadball painting nearing a conclusion it'll definitely be the LOTR orcs and gobs up next though my Comfrontation Bushi greenskins would do just as well as a dozen figures is more than plenty.

Looking forward to a few more dramatically raised eyebrows and poorly dubbed challenges ;)

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Roleplay Week: Thursday

Evening all,

So,....the finale or Roleplay Week was a long awaited session of Dark Heresy last night and our first since our recent Custard Doughnut moment. After four weeks Rob had pretty much calmed down but it was still going to be interesting.

So re-capping we had an invite to a Choir afternoon workshop, possibly involving raffia giraffes, followed by another Choir social at the behest of Lady B who we were particularly keen to have a chat with about the xenos-spiced-people-drug-wine, it's a particularly good tipple.

Stepping off the plotline railroad we first headed back to our local mid-hive church for a session of enlightenment and possible basket weaving. Ryan, as fake noble, hadn't been able to make it so with Jynx horribly hung over on xenos-spiced-people-drug-wine I ran him ;)
I DID state before we went in that my plan was to be as obnoxious as possible to produce a reaction from the local priests and I succeeded in spades with Rob ably playing his part as strongarm of the Lord in another, apparently futile no-dice, attempt to acquire a xenos happy-meter. So well did we play the card that a squad of ten local filth turned up with an Orange Blamange cease and desist notice, enforced by shotgun.

Further refusing to get back on the plot-line railroad we set off to Lady B manor to have a chat but she wasn't in. Tracking her down we couldn't get in there either, another no dice shocker, so we just sat outside the front gates and refused to leave. Eventually she turned up though strangely with the same ten local filth, though this time with an Orange Blancmange get on with it notice.

Climbing back on board the scenario we got dudded up for the evening's entertainment which turned out to be a snuff theatre production at Joyous Choir central for all of Hive Sibellus' greatest and not so good.

Scanning about we located two sets of stairs leading back down the spire to what I scanned to be a psychic void guarded by some large types in well filled combat bodysuits and chunky pistols. Turning our attention back to the play we soon worked out that the victim role was being played by a drugged yocal, which was something of a tradition around these parts.

Determined to spoil the party and create a distraction to get down the stairs we discussed tactics and went for a Spasm at the would be knife-man, who we soon came to know and hate as Elsergi Krin. We had thought about trying to clear the place with Fearful Aura but decided it was a bit too much even for us.

Making a big effort to get the timing right we dropped Krin just to have him stand straight back up and shiv el victim without even a blink, much to Mr C's obvious delight "that's the rules". Add a doughnut to the group's pack!

Fear checks all round and most of us fail including myself. Spotting this Krin strolls up through the crowd of sycophants and picks on the skeletal, paranoid, black hearted psyker wearing motley with something of an inferiority I did a mocking little dance and sang "See the little goblin, see his little feet....etc" at which point I found myself being escorted to a nearby combat pit for a little after show entertainment.

Though the duel was billed as first blood, there was no way I was having that or a stand up fight, I DID state my intent to give Krin a shivving much as he had for el victim, time for the downtrodden to bite back!

Spasm got Krin to the floor but only gave me +10 to hit against my -10 for being royally hungover, "that's the rules", equalling a big bad miss and another doughnut moment. Krin gave me a clump without drawing blood before I then Perils of the Warp'd myself into unconciousness for a few minutes. Coming round Krin showboating I mocked him into a secound bout and went at it.

This time Krin got the drop on me and drew blood, I returned the favour but once again the rules demanded that I formalyy a Spasm and a las shot to the leg left him howling along with Mr C who produced a squad of ten local filth with shotguns and shock mauls to escort me from the premises. Can you fill a doughnut with blancmange?

Meanwhile....the lads had snuck downstairs to find a set of now empty cells within the apparent null field so had probably been used to hold captured psykers. On the way out they kept on making, and intially failing, awareness tests until they spotted a robed type talking to Karlos Scholl, the head of the choir. Somewhat fortuitously with all the commotion they noticed a new bionic eye on Mr Robe, as if he'd recently been shot in the head by a high powered sniper rifle, and overheard a conversation "I've made a fortune for your masters on Ambulon".......aahh next stop is obvious plot device! ;)

Unsurprisingly we were suddenly required to report back to Baron Harkonnen who informed us the Ambulon is an ancient walking city that potters around the wastes mining something or the other critical to the Imperium, as such constructs seem to do.

Fairly sure where we're off to next :)

Oh and if you'd like to have a go at making your own Blancmange ..........

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Roleplay Week: Tuesday

Oh I say, top hole old man!
Evening all,

Unfortunately Monday night's EotE had to be postponed at late notice but last night at Enfield Gamers we got the club EotE going with plenty of mugs of tea and a particularly stunning chocolate birthday cake for Mr C.

As previously mentioned I'd set myself up with a Droid Rogue Fixer, Dig-1-T, envisaging him as something of a uber-geek black market dealer of upgraded weapons, armour and cybernetics as well as hacked info to order for the local gangs. Far from a physical specimen he relies on a combination of malicious charm deception and a shot in the back, in fact back-stabbing of any ilk, rather than any form of confrontation.

Picking up the character sheet I realised that I hadn't really finished it off or worked out my full back story and wasn't entirely sure where I'd put all my skill upgrades. On a whim I also decided to play as an R4 Astromech type.......this all proved to be something of a mistake!

As we got into our first encounter I found myself backing off and trying to talk my way out of things. Feeling a certain C3-P0 expectation I went all jolly hockey sticks upper class British, seemed to fit. Moving onto the ubiquitous cantina fight my R4 status became something more of a drag as the rest of the boys did the heavy lifting.

That's a spicy light based crude!
Post bar-fight the soft and tech skills came to the fore and I stepped a bit further into the role a bit whilst also realising that I need to re-jig a few bits and develop the background a touch more for obligation and motivation.

Obligation; picking up a hack job for a relatively new gang of Hutt backed slavers it proved to a sting by Black Sun and Dig-1-Ts found himself on the run from both sides and forced to seek protection from a robot crime lord associated to General Grievous who he'd previously preferred to avoid. He owes big!

Motivation: non of these non mechanicals can be trusted, they design build, use and abuse all droid kind without a single thought! Droid kind needs to stand up for itself and be granted the same galactic rights as any "other" sentient race. As far as Dig-1-Ts is concerned the ends justify the means and he's happy to apply his nefarious skills for the cause, especially his. Having been forced to flee his workshop liberating a few "brothers" along the way will provide further support for the cause, especially his (theme?).


So once again the character is so much more than the stats and skills on the sheet. They need a little bit of refinement as well but they're the means, not the end.

Hear endeth the sermon :)

Monday, 12 August 2013

Roleplay Week: Monday

 Afternoon people,

Continuing on from my previous post this week the stars have aligned to deem this Roleplay Week, which is no bad thing by the way.

This evening Rich J will be kicking off a Star Wars Edge of the Empire (EotE) with a number of us via the technological marvel that is Google Hangouts, which we've tried previously to great success. Tomorrow night at the club Rich J will be kicking off a Star Wars Edge of the Empire (EotE) with a number of us via the rather less technological marvel of sitting around a table with a bunch of dice, paper and pencils plus a selection of higly calorific sugary goodness, which we've tried previously to great success.

Thursday night will be Dark Heresy at casa Mr C and should be interesting after all the shenanagins last time out causing a near player revolt. Backlash is a real probability.

Rich always does a particuarly good job wih write ups so I'll just provide the relevant links once they're up. What I am going to do is continue my/our voyage through me/you/us becoming a better role-player.

First up would be character generation then. EotE comes across as a pretty open and flexible system and it is. Having had a browse through there seemed to be quite a bit of overlap between the various classes and careers. It also felt a bit like there were a number of obvious archetypes i.e. the Bothan Diplomat, Rodian Pilot, Wookie Marauder etc etc. Having my second proper go at generating my own character, rather than picking up a pre-gen, I fancied something a bit atypical firtsly to push myself as a player and second to see if the system allowed.

As such I've gone for a Trandoshan Politico, Bo-Lahn Krassk, on the basis that every race must have Nobles / Ambassadors and thats how I intend to play him, as a Noble fallen on hard times and forced out into the fringe but determined to return. I see him as semi-paladanic but with a ruthless streak that could turn crime lord depending on how the cards fall. Generation took a bit of jiggery pokery but all came together in the end with Mr C's help after his initial scepticism.

I've concentrated on all of the soft skills maxing stats and ranks for Charm, Decieve, Leadership, Streetwise etc to turn him into something of a sharp operator.

His natural Brawn and a rank in Melee means he still retains a strong arm when needed and a Force Pike, Staff of Office, for when negotiations stall. He will, however, look to stun rather than kill wherever possible, which I can see bringing him into conflict with Mr C's glory boy Bounty Hunter almost immediately but I'm sure that's half of the fun ;]

Obligation and background is important within EotE and putting some extra work in here will surley help me get a lot more out! Bo's obligation is to his family.

The Krassks were once an influential clan of Trandosha acting as power brokers with a number of the clan obtaining substantial jagannath (honour) points as hunters of great repute. This all ended when Bo's brother Jai-Lahn Krassk, an up and coming Bounty Hunter, was ambushed and captured by a slaver gang. Ransomed back to the family the deal went sour and the family were exposed dealing with the slavers, loosing the ransom, Jai, and all of thier jagannath. Cast out into the fringe Bo now searches for his brother convinced that the whole episode was a ruse to bring down his family.

Determined to right those wrongs and restore his family's status Bo would also show his own skills a a hunter in bringing the conspirators to justice. Instilled with his family's code of justice what price redemption? Will the end justify the means?

 So something different for me to play, redemption all round? We shall see :)

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Positively - Mental - Attitude??

Evening people.

I got some games of Dreadball in Tuesday night down at the Enfield Gamers, three in fact, with my Veermyn taking on Rich J's Dalek Robots. 

Took me the first game to remember how to play and did well to only loose by one point with Rich caging up the ball at the last to keep it from me :)

Second game I somehow pulled off a landslide, diametrically opposed dice gods may have helped, before the series decider went back to a narrow one point loss again.

All three were good games well contested with an excellent gaming buddy. For me it was well needed as I've been feeling a bereft recently. I've been happy enough with plenty of roleplay and fun games but my "wargames" itch had built up to something of a crescendo.

I was having a bit of a whinge at Mr C about it just the other day as in that I was playing games but not always the ones that I'd prefer to. All gamers, gaming groups and clubs (not necessarily the same thing!) go through cycles and mine had just got a bit out of sync. I self diagnosed the symptom of painting figures, happily enough it has to be said, that I was then putting straight into a case :/

So well needed as I said, the bottom lip retreated which was when I realised it had crept out there in the first place. It was at this point I decided that as it was MY bottom lip it's MY responsibility so I'd best do something about playing those games that I'd prefer to.

X-Wing is getting big at the club recently which is a good thing, just not my thing. As such I'm going to dig out Space Hulk and get some use out of the figures that I so enjoyed painting up. PMA my friends, sometimes our hobby seems to lack enough of it!

On that note what's this I hear about the apparent desolation of the Dreadball tourney scene? Unfortunately I couldn't make it to the day at Tabletop Nation the other week. Apparently it was a field of six with three pathfinders and a staffer,...which leaves two actual punters?

Hate to say it but kind of glad I was busy, wouldn't have been impressed with that one. I know there has been a fair bit of "healthy debate" with the Judwan and some of the rules. I tuned out once the froth reached Whinecon 5 but each to their own. Apparently there's a fix coming with Season 3, though I would have been more than happy without. 

If you fancy a game then look me up i'll always be keen. Was chatting to Rich last night about a joint X-Wing / Dreadball tourney day down at the club.

Watch this space people and remember to stock up your PMA!  :)

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Here come the........Girls??

A quiet weekend which allowed me to finally got a few more Dreadball figures finished off;

First up are the Cho-Sin Cheer-Squad. I kept these ladies in a simple black and white, the same as my head coach, to allow me to use them with any team, should the opportunity arise. I almost left the glow-globe pom poms off but they looked worse without out. I used layers of wash and stippling to try and build up a sort of electro-glow feel to them. Rather pleased actually :)

Ludwig got painted up as a test figure for my Z'Zor. Orginally I tried to go for a green/blue shadow upto yellow edge highlights which I simply couldn't make work. Playing around I tried a red/pink belly/ central stripe which seems to have worked far better.

Based vaguely on the colours of the green stink beetle I present the MVP for the Reek-Hole Redbacks, which is close enough to Rico's Roughnecks to give me a sideways giggle ;)

I played around with Reek, as you do, but always wanted a fluro Green/Yellow and worked all the contrast colours from there. As my team of the moment he may just see some game-time sooner rather than later.

Last, but far from least, with the Judwan the current super-team ripping up the DB tourneys, apparently, I couldn't resist an overly obvious Superman scheme which painted up in less time you can KNEEL BEFORE ZOD!!

So 14 Painting Points to open the monthly account. Just the Z'Zor, Forge Fathers and the pitch for a fully painted least until Season 3 which is likely to be Nameless plus one. We'll see :)