Thursday, 28 May 2015

Taking Stock

Hello people,
For those of you who have noticed, yes it's been a little while. A combo of being overly busy and not too much to say other than the same old same old. It has helped that my laptop seems to have had something go pop and suddenly won't take charge.
Similarly I dropped a Dumbell on my uninsured smartphone recently and the time without one highlighted just how dependant I am on one for blogging ad much as anything/everything else!
So in recent weeks X-Wing has, unsurprisingly continued to dominate as Nationals up at UK Games Expo is this weekend coming up. I have no grand expectations other than wishing to give a decent account and enjoy my first full tourney weekend for quite sometime.
To that end Boba Smurf has seen plenty of exclusive play recently including a couple of more casual events. Mid table will suit me well and the escalation games on Sunday will be something different.
Meanwhile Infinity continues to take hold with 6 of us at the club committing it'll be my Tuesday night game of choice for a while. Last week a lot "clicked" for me and I gave a much better game with my Shasvassti utilising their cloak and dagger style far better. Learning the Camo rules properly was a big bonus for all involved!
Rolling on myself and Dave split an Op Icestorm box set with myself taking the Nomads. I'm also taking Jon's Icestorm Nomads from him to double up, theory being that with far less special rules I should be able to concentrate on learning the core game a bit better. Also, the model range is SUPER COOL!!
So with two fledging factions and Rob's Tohaa very painstakingly put together all other projects have been swept aside in a fit of reality. The paint station has been cleared with a number of slightly dusty refugees consigned to cases and a paint restock list being drawn up! The always rather ambitious projects list has received a similar dose of reality ;)
With X-Wing playing a lot of Boba has been the smart move and also a lot of fun but after the weekend some variation will be required.
After all you know what they say about all work and no play! I assume that also applies to Toys ;)

Monday, 11 May 2015

Boba rides again!

Hello people,

First a caveat, this is NOT a Charlie Large Spuds I'm so great post.....honest :)

Dropping down to Dark Sphere Thursday night I rocked up with my Boba Smurf list determined to put into practice my recent epiphanies about deployment and opening moves. I've realised that I generally set up facing forward and fly off in that direction with a plan but less idea of execution.

I drew John as an opponent. John's a great guy and a very good player. He's been terrorising people with his HLC  IG / Quad Z95 list for a while now and placed top 4 at last weeks MK Regional. In honesty I was just looking to give a decent game and try out a few ideas around deployment, opening moves as well as bait and switch.

As it happens I somehow flew probably the best game I ever have with this list and took the win 100-36 :)

As a  flanker list my opponent has rarely given me that lank with any ease. As such it was time to start creating one. Deploying my Z swarm on the far right John followed conventional practice to follow suit on the diagonal and had his IG lurking nearby. I knew that he was likely to burn a few turns with the IG to force the engagement with his Zs so that the IG was free to swoop about sniping from range with the HLC.

As such I had Boba adjacent to the Zs angled toward the board edge so that Turn 1 the Zs pulled hard left along my horizontal board edge while Boba ran up the vertical.....thus creating my flank!

After that it was some pretty hard flying as I attemptted to engage the IG as soon as possible. A couple of turns in Boba's boosts had him a bit farther ahead than I would have liked and leaving the supporting Zs behind. Luck played an early hand as Jon rolled his Zs in after Boba as I deliberately bumped the IG with him to deny him the shot.

Trapped between Boba and his Smurfs Jon's Zs were soon falling though I was very aware that I wasn't focusing in on IG and I aware of his late game strength. Boba getting some decent rolls helped out greatly and by mid-game I was feeling far more comforatable as I'm pretty happy with my dogfighting abilities. Being far more positive with Boba was reaping rewards and moving last I was often able to dodge IGs arc.

Late game it a was Boba and two Zs versus IG and I gladly paid a sacrificial Z to run away and regroup. Re-engaging with the Z, no 13, running as a blocker I had the upper hand and eventually got on to IGs tail at which point it was waiting for the dice to come up.......which they did.

In honesty I flew much better because I realised what I needed to do and actually did it. Luck still played a big part, with a few crucial turns where the game swung both ways, though you've got to give Her Ladyship the chance to smile on you :)

A big game for me but mainly because I didn't just learn, I applied the learning :)

Sunday, 10 May 2015

That would be an Ecumenical matter!

Hello People,

Bit of a hiatus once again but there you. Yet another impressionistic style mini review as we played a bit more Infinity down at Enfield Gamers this Tuesday.

This time it was a four way 250 point game with pretty much the full rules with Star Wars themed forces. Yeah, biting off more than you can chew and all that jazz!

I'd previously heard that Infinity can be a bit fiddly and there are quite a number of special rules and the like, in fact it can be a bit bewildering at first contact. On the other hand some things are super dead simple, such as linear terrain. If the figure isn't right up against it then no bonus. The LOS "silhouette" system is similarly very black and white. In fact there's very little grey with Infinity, just plenty of actions, states, abilities and skills to take into account.

For a skirmish game it's quite a different design philosophy, at least it is for us. I found that once I realised that and got my head around it a lot more fell into place. You need plenty of terrain on an Infinity table to break LOS, your aiming for that cluttered feeling. Initially the rules felt similarly cluttered by once you realsise that they're actually individually simple LOS opens up. It feels like a very different design philosophy. Once I realised that and got my head around it a lot more fell into place.

Once again.....grown up Necromunda. More tonight  :)

Monday, 4 May 2015

Strap's gonna be a bumpy ride!

Hello people,

Bit of a busy week culminating with the X-Wing Regional tourney at Milton Keynes run by the rock solid guys at Guardians of Tyr.

I have to admit that I wasn't expecting too much from this one in terms of results. This was mainly because I was doing a Tough Mudder the day before (11 mile cross-country assault course) and expected to be suffering......I was not wrong!

As such I went with a new list, one close to my geeky heart....... the man, the legend BOBA FETT!!

I'd played around with a few lists and come up a Chunky Boba / Swarm list I liked;

Firespray - Boba Fett - Vet Instincts, Gunner, Engine Upgrade, Inertial Dampeners
Z95 - Binyare Soldier x 4 

In theory the Zs run interferance whilst Boba flanks to swoop in close and make best use of his re-rolls. Gunner gets him an extra bite of the cherry and keep his action Boosts. As his ability is positional VI allows him to move last with Boosts and a one-off full stop.

As we all know theory isn't practise and  Firesprays aren't the easiest to get the best from. In short I lost my first three games, drew the fourth and won the fifth. Rarely did my opponent give me a flanking opportunity and at times I struggled to create one. Once in broken field I flew much better.

First up was a super doom Shuttle, Soontir and Carnor. I took the shuttle down quickly but struggled with the stealth / autothruster interceptors who had hot green dice. In honestly I got Boba out of position and didn't turn him round quickly enough in an attempt to keep my options open. Mediocre flying and dice cost me a very close game.

Second was thirty-six shades of grey (Decimator, Firespray, Shuttle) which set up wide to reduce my options. I took the right option of steaming into the Shuttle opposite my Zs to create the flank. Boba took fire early as I splatted the Shuttle and then chased down the Decimator. Boba fell to the Firespray who couldn't roll a wrong dice and eventually finished me off. Right options, wrong dice!

Third was a quintuplet of TIE Bombers. As it was the game after lunch I worked out my best options and then flew the worst. Somehow I made a game of it and knocked down three Bombers to go ahead on points with a heavily smoking Boba. With 4 minutes left on the game he bought the galactic farm. A fair result really.

Penultimate round was against a Chewy / Lando road-train which is a net-list I was aware of but hadn't played against. Knowing I had to target Chewy I blocked the road-train into a corner with the Zs and brought Boba to bear. Eventually Chewy bought it and Lando broke out o the corner. At that point I'd lost two Zs and felt the win was coming. Unfortunately it didn't quite go that way as the Zs got slotted and Boba took a battering for a draw. Right options, wrong dice #2!

Finishing up was a Kath / Oicunn combo that split up allowing me to jump all over Oicunn before rounding on Kath who was toting an interesting Tactician / Mangler combo. Right options, right dice, just one Z lost!

At the beginning of the day I was just looking to take home an alternative Boba card. Thankfully it was the participation prize! I also managed to pick up a second alternative TIE Push the Limit card which was a bonus.

Mr C had a similar day to mine with his Interceptor list, going 2-3 to finish two spots above me. Nigel G meanwhile took his Dash / Dual B list to eighth and the knockout rounds, a major achievement! Big ships dominated the top eight, especially IG-2000s with Autothrusters and Nigel replayed one of them with a four Z95 swarm which had been his only loss of the day. Unfortunately Lady Luck turned it into a one sided affair to the IG. Watching the game it was something of a masterclass as the Z95 swarm forced the engagement and the IG lurked.

So all in all another good day out and a bit more learnt than usual. I need to put more flying time into my lists and working out the first few turns all the way from asteroid placement to opening moves.

Next up is Enfield Gamers' Scum & Villany Event Day. Boba will fly again! :)