Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Of games and gnomes.

Hi to all once again.

An odd few days.

On one hand..i have finished the UCM armour and dropships for Dropzone Commander.
On the other hand, I had a long hard think about my views on GW and came to the conclusion, they are not nearly as bad as net rage makes you think.

I am guilty of being swept up in the mob mentality and raging at GW. But i asked myself why. They got me into wargaming for which i will be forever gratefull. Their prices are in reality in line with most other 'luxury' goods and in most cases offer a lot more for the money.
I freaked out when White Dwarf was announced as changing. But, if the magazine as a whole improves through the weekly/monthly idea, then i will not be sorry. I realised that mostly what got my back up was actually...the fear of the change. White Dwarf had been a feature of hobbying for as long as i could remember.
I joined in the mob march against GW. But you was stupid. After a reality check i looked at it and thought.

GW. Best quality plastics anywhere on the market, most developed background of any game system in existance, For me- easy access stores where i can go to buy my stuff and chat hobby with other like minded people.
Yes it comes at a price, but not as bad as you think when compared to the other providers like PP, Wyrd, Infinity and Avatars of war.

So why do we hate on GW so much....i think much like in the service industry, it's all down to their visability. They are the big dog, with the stores, the web presence and the long long history. They are easy to hate on because they do make mistakes. Yes some of their actions regarding online stores could be questioned, but they are a business protecting themselves. Yes their hammering of anyone crossing into their IP is harsh, but they have a world to protect and in reality would you want every tom dick and harry robbing your stuff?.

So with all that in mind I would like to say, i for one do actually support GW, i may not always approve of their moves. But i am not going to jump on the forum/twitter bandwagon of GW hate anymore.

Now with that all said...lets show off some goodies!

Dropzone Commander UCM

Family Portrait

Condor dropship with bear apc's

Condor Dropship with Sabre MBT's

Condor dropship with Rapier AA

So that leaves the infantry to do. In the meantime in an effort to push a WFB army, i am going back to my days of a GW employee and starting a new Dwarf army.

Yup the short, angry, drunken, bearded ones are once again marching from their holds and onto the fields of glory.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

a time of patience for the impatient gamer

Hey all and welcome once again to this place of most random musings.

Over the last few days I have been on an ever decreasing spiral into craziness. Falling like a stone from the sky heading deeper and deeper into the 'dropzone'. My once fragile and this sanity word and now shredded to tatters as I fail to 'command' my own mind.

The hints are all there if your willing to see them.

If not let me explain.

96 Hours ago.

I bumped into a wargame i had seen, liked but never really ventured much of a look into. A couple of random twitter postings got my 'hackles' up and sent the curious wargamer in me searching.

72 Hours ago.

Curiousness let to the birthing of a demonic screeching within my wargamer heart. It lead to my previous blog post and a spate of twitter/fb outbursts.

48 Hours ago.

Armed with too much information, a lot of bad intentions and a healthy dent in my bank order was placed.

Over the last 48 hours.

The keening demonic shrill has grown in volume, shredding my sanity, the resistance within my wargamer heart. All hope has been lost in a tirade of frothing madness. Hours spent drooling over pictures, reading forum posts. More hours lost in youtube videos. Blogs, reviews, battle reports all digested with so much gusto that you would think fat-bastard had stumbled into an all-you-can-eat buffet at 'baby back ribs r us'.

Other games were pushed aside, the tribulations of this once sporadic hobby butterfly were quashed and scattered to the 4 winds. A game had stood up from amongst the masses and grabbed my attention in much the same way a stubbed toe stops you in your tracks.

A small twist of fate before work a few days ago took me down a path that ultimately bought me here. Waiting for the dispatch of my parcel, waiting to get my mucky ink stained, paint flecked hands on 'Dropzone Commander'.

I don't truly know why this game has captivated me so....but it has. It has taken my attention, my painter side, my gamer side, my fluff loving crazy side and my imagination, and it has wrapped them all in a sci-fi game that i just want to throw myself into.

With any luck the great guys at Firestorm Games will receive their resupply of command cards tomorrow and dispatch my 2 player set, city board, scurge/ucm command decks. This will get me started for sure!

A short piece of fluff ahead of our first game (when it arrives).

The city of Galrath was quiet, too quiet. The occasional crackle of flames from a burnt out building was the only indication that life had ever existed here.

The twin suns had long since set over the city and the streets were enveloped in a darkness so complete that vision was reduced to scant feet. Every now and then a flicker of flame would throw up shadows against the vacant city walls, a maddening dance of light and shadow that went unnoticed by the sightless empty windows of the streets around.

Galrath was a dead place. It had been that way since the scourge had invaded. Here and there elsewhere across the planet, small pockets of human resistance still fought on...but not in Galrath.

Or so the casual surveyor would think.

In the darkness things moved, alien things. They skittered across the streets searching the empty buildings and desolate alleyways. Driven by an iron will, they carried out their task. 

Scant hours earlier, the scourge had discovered the meaning of invasion for themselves. 
It had started with blistering contrails from the sky, where they impacted, the surface erupted in billowing clouds of debris and flame. It was followed by slower moving objects, lazy, lumbering dropships that disgorged vehicles and men in their thousands. 
For the men and women of the resistance, it was as if a new nightmare had been borne upon them by the scourge, a new wave of death and destruction that reached out with uncaring hands to crush lives.
To the scourge it was a familiar sight, it was a sight being repeated across many of the taken worlds. It was the sight of United Colonies of Men liberation armies. A sight that heralded war anew.

However in the city of Galrath, the streets had remained empty. The fighting had not reached the city yet, but the scourge were searching for something.

In the darkness something else moved too. Silent and stealthy, small teams of Legionnaires moved across the eastern side of the city. They moved with purpose and direction. Like the scourge they were searching, Unlike the scourge, they knew what for.

As dusk had settled over Galrath a flight of Condor dropships had sped across the sky with a heavy escort of Archangel interceptors. 
For the briefest moment Galrath had know life and war as the sky was criss-crossed with anti-aircraft fire. 
Then they were gone, all that is, except for a lone condor. A burst of fire had shredded the fuselage and sent it crashing down somewhere in the eastern sector of the city.

Nothing should have survived the crash, but as is the way of these things something..or someone had. 

Amongst the twisted wreckage of the condor dropship, Marshall Feldpattick, commander of the 669th Legionnaire division cautiously flicked the switch on his emergency beacon. Pinned in place by the weight of a Wolverine across his shattered legs, he knew it could mean rescue or death, he knew his beacon would be picked up by the ships in orbit, but he knew the scourge would sense it too.

High in orbit, aboard the UCM Flagship Saratoga, the emergency beacon was picked up, decisions were made and forces were tasked.

The men moving silently across Galrath's eastern side, were some of the best in the 669th division. Recon and stealth specialists, they had been given a high priority mission. 

To extract the Marshall and recover the 2 intel packs he was transporting. 
To UCM high command, the Marshall was considered expendable, to the men of the 669th, he was not. 

War was coming to Galrath, as surely as the sun would rise in the morning, so was the war.

Like i said, Dropzone Commander seems to have captured every side of the hobbyist within me. I hope you enjoyed the short 'story'. It's been a long time since i even attempted to write something like it must be a sign of something eh...even if it's my continued spiral down into madness.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

The golden age.

Good morning to you all on this chilly British morning.

Following on from my last post, I find myself looking over all the games we have at our finger tips.
We truly have as wargamers, entered a golden age of gaming. A time when there are so many games, so many different varieties, that it can be as much of a hinderance as a boon.

I indeed suffer from 'ADOSS' (Attention Deficit Oh Shiny Syndrome) as i think many of the #warmongers and wargaming world do.
It's the one thing that makes our hobby so great and yet so frustrating.

I remember a time when it was pretty much Games Workshop, DnD or board games. Then a few other companies came along. Some stayed and some went.

But then the internet exploded on us. Facebook, Twitter, forums and Kickstarter all came in to being.
Not only did this enable the wargaming community to expand and share it's trials and tribulations, it also gave a news stand to the suppliers of our 'plasticrack' a place to show their wares.
No longer was it word of mouth, a chance discovery in a rare monthly multi game mag, nor was it down to finding that musty smelling, dark door into another world (gaming store).

Indeed i find myself many a time, looking on twitter and fb and seeing models from new games and thinking... wow i need to get me into that.
But that is the curse of our modern time and golden age. Focus is lost, games clamor for our attention and bank managers cry into the coffee.

I for one do not have the answer or the cure to the constant demand of new games, nor do i have the willpower to resist them all. Do you?

For now i must leave and battle the newly born wargaming demon within, for Dropzone Commander is screaming for attention in a way only a wargamer understands.

But it is not all bad news :)

So far this year i have painted and i have enjoyed going with a  'what i feel like' approach. It's in direct opposition to my intended focus approach. But since Sunday night i have achieved this

It's progress Jim!

Friday, 10 January 2014

All systems reset..

I could rage on the days events or just quit.
I could as my brain keeps screaming 'just bin the lot'.

But it wont happen. Not today.

With that thought to keep you bemused, let me say welcome back to the occasionally updated, sometimes amusing and always demented ramblings of one demented wargamer.

I hope life has been treating you all well and Christmas (if you celebrate it) was kind to you all.

Today started like any other, school run, dog walk, few cups of tea. Raging frothing post about more changes by GW. #ragequit seems to be the in thing and i came so close to doing that to wargaming in general.
A damned good rant later and it got me thinking...somewhere between the raging and tears talking about my old dog chip...a thought skittered across the cosmos and lodge in my head.

Over recent years i have flittered about from game to game, army to army. Never ceasing, never settling and never really happy. It's not a slur against any of the games or companies, in fact getting my attention isn't as easy as it used to be. So getting me to see your game is pretty good going.
I think the problem at the heart is just a jaded view of gaming as i have not actually been 'gaming'.

It took a bit of thought, ranting and chatting to really see that point. I don't want to paint simply because i am not gaming.
Over the course of last year i worked too much, slacked of too much and gamed too little. This has come full circle to my jaded wargamer blues.

But how do you battle back. Well phase 1 is going to be focusing on a single game or at least only a couple.
I have a couple of nice pick up and play games. X-wing and Zombicide. Now these are great games but they feel like more of a 'board game' than wargame.
So aside from those i needed to find some direction. Easy for lots of people, they may only have 1 or 2 games....but not me.
Don't believe's the list of currently owned and unpainted games.

Warhammer 40k
Warhammer Fantasy Battle
Kings of war
Dystopian Wars

Its a heck of a list and explains the somewhat directionless mind i have had.
So how do you really get back.

Well step 1 is devising more time for myself. That means less overtime at work.
step 2 was sitting down having a chat with my wargamer in crime and picking 1 or 2 games that we could both enjoy and focusing on them.
step 3 set aside a day to play the games, this in turn will help with painting.

Stage 1 is complete.
Stage 2 is almost complete in that, Myself and Carol think Dystopian Wars and a return to Wyrd's Malifaux would be the best focus. We loved Malifaux in V1 and v1.5. Yet to try V2 but the basic game has always been awesome. Dystopian Wars has enough difference to be a challenge and the few fumbled games we have managed have been enjoyable.

Stage 3 is to be sorted. Being a non driver makes getting out for games so much more difficult especially when i don't live in a city, but instead live in a #large' (hahaha yeah right) town in north Norfolk. Said town has limited transport and a very small 40k only community.
But 1 part of the approach needs to be setting aside gaming time at home. At the moment i think every other Sunday (as it's 1 of only 2 days i get off with carol).

Well it's a start on a plan and a step up from being ready to quit. To my High elf, British airborne and various other armies, i have to apologise. But hopefully their time will come in the future.