Tuesday, 31 December 2013

A new year begins

It's the end of 2013 and hobby wise not much has happened in the last month. I'm still waiting on my main hobby Christmas present to arrive but that won't be for a couple months yet. I am however posting this from next years Christmas present, a swanky new iPad mini. It's kinda hobby related as I plan on using it to post updates during the America trip. Anyway, on to plans for 2014. The only hobby resolution I'll be making is to do something hobby related each day I'm off work and unless it's a tournament just playing a game doesn't count. So starting tomorrow the pile of untouched lead and plastic starts to get smaller. I've a couple Warmachine games planed in the next month or so but no dates set yet so more information probably once they are played. Smogcon is fast approaching so there's more painting to be done for that and practice games to be played. Add in starting Wild West Exodus, Bolt Action and Firestorm Armada should see me busy for a little while. Next post as previously promised pictures of my painting from the recent journeyman league.

Happy New Year everyone.

Monday, 2 December 2013

Slow blog is slow

So it's been a while. A few things have changed in the past five months. The biggest hobby change is me getting paint on a good number of my Trollbloods but more on that in a bit. To get this blog back on track this post is going to be a recap since the last post.

Since the last post I've been re-elected as Chairman of Crow Valley Crusaders. I was joined on the committee by one returning official and three new officials. If all goes to plan we can keep the club progressing in the right direction and help the club grow. I've also started volunteering with the Gaming Club Network for the South Wales region. The aim is to get clubs in the region to interact more and should see me visiting them more.

Since the last update I've added a good chunk of models to my Trollbloods. I now own all but three of the factions casters and have at least one of each heavy beast. I've also added a couple of support options. My next step in purchases is to complete the caster collection before moving on to more units. the biggest change has been getting a lot of models painted. Thanks to the motivation provided by Alun getting a lot of stuff painted for his Khador force for the clubs Journeyman league I managed to get seven casters, five heavy beasts, two light beasts, five solos and ten whelps painted. Pictures to come in another update. I also learnt a lot during the journeyman as I exclusively ran Runes of War throughout the league using the alternate battlebox. The plan is to expand the list up to 50 points and once the second half of my order comes through I'll have all four Runeshaper units I need for it.

The last real update for this post is about a visit to Mantic's open day on Saturday. Myself and two of the guys from club set off at 6am for Nottingham to pick our Deadzone pledges. In addition to Ronnie from Mantic Warren and Lloyd from Beasts of War and Alessio Cavatore were all in attendance. By random luck we were at the front of the collection line when Beasts of War went past filming the release and accosted Ronnie for a tour around the warehouse. On top of Mantic, Warlord Games, Hawk Wargames and Mongoose Publishing were present. In addition to a Deadzone pledge reward I walked away from the day with a 1000 point starter for Bolt Action and a copy of Dropzone Commander I'm splitting with one of the other guys that went. Not a bad haul between the three of us as you can see from the state of my car boot at the end of the day.

Possibly the biggest surprise of the day was seeing a couple of boars from the Boards and Gears kickstarter being used. All three of us were very impressed with the quality of the boards and look forward to getting them and using them.

Picture taken from the Mantic Facebook album if you want to see more of the day. Unfortunately we couldn't stay for the rest of the day as we had to head back to club for our Longest Night event and over 24 hours of straight gaming time. The inital part of the night saw the three of us that attended to open day sorting through our pledges before numerous games of Super Dungeon Explorer and Zombiecide in addition to the normal games we play and copious amounts of pizza for dinner and breakfast from a local burger van. From leaving home at 6am Saturday and getting back at just gone 6pm Sunday I'd call it a  successful 36 hours.

Monday, 8 July 2013

My first Warmachine tournament, sort of....

So a couple months ago the idea of having an 35 point eight man Steamroller at club was mentioned and after looking at the dates everyone was available we decided on this past Sunday. We got eight signups and everyone was committed to being there early so we could fit in all three rounds during club time. Being our first tournament we made a few changes to the normal Steamroller format. First was the change to Death Clock rather than timed turns. We also extended the time limit to the next points level giving each player 60 minutes on their clock. We decided on running the baseline army list option to give people that wanted the chance to run two different lists during the day. The next step is probably the biggest departure from the normal format. We drew the first round pairings the week before the tournament and rolled the scenarios that would be played three days before the tournament. Probably not ideal but worth it to speed things up at the start of the day.

For the week before the tournament I was certain that my one list would be led by epic Doomshaper. I'd been playing him a lot recently so everything should be fairly plain sailing while playing him. The second was a little more troubling. My first opponent was going to be Scott and his Cryx. Having played him recently with Doomshaper I knew he wasn't going to work. I had a look through the casters I had and found a couple I liked the look of. After a bit of thought I decided on Jarl Skuld, mainly for his magic bullet spell. The Doomshaper list wrote itself from recent play but the Jarl one was a bit more difficult. Given the options I owned a shopping trip was in order. A quick trip to Firestorm Games saw a Dire Troll Blitzer, 2 Pyre Trolls and a full Scattergunner unit with officer and standard added to the kriel. The day before the tournament was spend building the models before a night out bowling and drinking with some mates.

So the tournament. I've already said my first round was going to be against Scott and his Cryx and playing the Fire support scenario. We exchanged lists and the look on his face was worth the cost of the new models in the Jarl list and also made my decision what I'd play. He decided on an almost identical epic Deneghra list to one he'd previously beaten me with. Between Deneghras feat, bile thralls and lots of bane's I knew I was in for fun. After a hard game, as always against Scott, he won on scenario points. Lots to learn from the game but still enjoyable.

Next up was Gareth and his Khador. A quick look at his lists and I saw one had Conquest in it and left me no choice but to run Doomshaper. To my surprise he decided on his other list. Butcher with a few jacks and a Winterguard unit with the UA and Jozef. Round two was incursion and I managed to get into the zone first. He positioned his Winterguard just at the other end of the zone and got them to a stupidly high defence with Iron flesh plus bob and weave. My next turn I popped my feat and jammed everything apart from Doomshaper into his line keeping him out of the zone. His next turn saw him almost break through my line with a Juggernaut falling just short of killing my mauler. The mauler then healed up and wrecked the jack with me going on to win on scenario by keeping Gareth out of the zone.

The third round was Incursion against Paul and his Khador. I settled on Doomshaper again and Paul chose his Irusk list. He advanced his Man-O-War units up screening his jack, the Great Bears and Irusk. I got the alpha strike killing most of two Man-O-War units and I noticed Irusk wasn't completely hidden behind the jack that was protecting him. I thought I try a couple cheeky primal shocks to knock a few points of health of him. My dice decided different and after the second damage roll Paul, gracious as always, offered his hand to congratulate me on winning the game.

After working out the standings I finished fourth with my loss being to Scott, the eventual winner. Not bad but some learning to do. Firstly know the abilities of models in your list. My first game might have gone differently if I'd remembered the Blitzers animus. Secondly, keeping your opponent out of zones can massively influence games. Finally, I need a way to quickly transport my models from table to table. So time to start saving the pennies for a tournament tray.

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Stupid ideas are stupid

So the first post in a new blog so I guess some introductions are in order.

For anyone that doesn't know me my name is Byron and I'm a wargamer that lives in Cwmbran, UK. This is my first attempt at anything vaguely blog related so apologies before we get started . I've a reputation for coming up with silly ideas, so when I said to the guys at my local club that I fancied going to America in a couple years time for Adepticon and staying for Lock and Load nobody was really surprised. The surprising bit to me was when a few of the guys, Rhys, Shaun and Gareth, from club said they'd come along. So after a few beers at the pub a vague idea was formed. We'll fly to America for Adepticon, in Chicago,  and travel Seattle for Lock and Load. The next question was what we were are going to do between the conventions. When I asked the guys they said they were happy to go ahead with my suggestion of visiting the game stores associated with the larger podcasts associated with the Privateer Press game Warmachine.

After a quick internet search looking at car hire cost the first major decision of the trip was made. We'll fly into Seattle, drive to Chicargo drive to Adepticon and make the return trip to Lock and Load in Seattle. After putting the route into Google it came in at just under 6,000 miles. Then Rhys suggested visiting Las Vegas pushing the trip over 6000 miles but nobody really complained because it's Vegas. He also suggested going to Miami but after further questioning he said he wanted to visit Disneyland in Florida so nobody cared.

At this point you might be asking yourself what I plan to do with the blog for the next two year is. Personally I plan to take only painted models. To some this might seem like a simple thing but personally it'll probably be more of a challenge than anything else associated with the trip. We'll also need to look at more competitive play styles as the trip approaches so I plan on visiting tournaments in the UK and the blog will be used to track how these goals progress. I'm going to aim for a minimum of fortnightly updates from now until the trip and when we're in America the updates will be as regular as I can make them.

So, the route so far...  http://goo.gl/maps/v17bj