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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

40k in review for the year

Well, my last Codex that I purchased has been the Dark Angels and before that Chaos. I bought a few models with the Shroud Speeder being my last purchase of GW items so far in 2013. My last two events was a tournament in June and playing at the Kalm in Alabama in May. I had a blast at the Kalm despite some setbacks and it was good to see my family. With Bolt Action taking up most of my time and looking for a new job 40k hasn’t gotten much attention.

This year, the Kalm is out for me due to starting a new job and low leave balance (that I need to save for my 10 year anniversary!) but I do plan to do some fun games. I am unsure if I will go to tournaments anytime soon as I just frankly hate the meta right now and until that settles down I don’t want to go play a cheese fest. I’ve always wanted a good solid game and not a game of big, bigger, even bigger!

Adding Forge World was the shadow of doom to the game, including it as “official” is crap. FW is big boy toys with people with lots of money to piss away, granted with the price hikes of late the entire game is going in that direction.

Already brought up the price hikes…wow steeper and steeper every year.

Finecast gone….good! It sucked ass.

Adding Escalation rules for more defenses and super heavies? Really? Super Heavy vehicles are just stupid to add to the mainstream. This is a push to sell crap that isn’t selling.

I am looking forward to the Ork Codex and future IG releases, that may revive my faith in 40k. I have read the Inquisition book and think it would be great to play with for some laughs in game.

Overall, I am going to sell some of my stuff. Things I won’t use anytime soon or have used in the past two years. I need to reduce the clutter and make space. In the past it was reasonable to collect this and that…now, it is just THIS and only this within limits. I do plan to have fun with 40k but on my own terms and not GW’s anymore.

I do plan to finish up various armies that have been long neglected and back into the painting circle as well.

My armies as they stand:
Tau (going to be sold)
Orks (waiting on the book)
IG (waiting on the book)
Space Wolves (staying for now)
Dark Angels (staying for now)
Inquisition (staying for now)
Chaos (Keeping Iron Warriors, Word Bearers, 1000 Sons & Death Guard. Khorne gone)
Demons (Keeping for now, for Word Bearers, etc)
Fantasy Vampire Counts (keep)
Fantasy Chaos (get rid of, the small bit left)

Am I giving up on 40k? No, but I am going to a more casual play for this year while I wait to see what happens when the dust settles. For now, I want to play some of the new Kill Team games and just general fun games for now. I have been lax with articles and I hope to perhaps revive that with painting, reviews and some flashback articles also.

Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Wow, so true about the 40k Meta

This is from Bell of Lost Souls and is so true...

I've been quiet of late with 40k since the Kalm and my last tournament in June (I think) at Darkside. With my old job being phased out I had to find a new one (and did) so the job shift, a death in the family and the holidays has really thrown a wrench into regular gaming.

Mostly Bolt Action has attracted my gaming time as the 40k meta is going in a direction I just flatly don't like. Which the BOLS cartoon sums it up, 40k is turning into Magic. You have to spend money on the latest things and expensive items to get the game winning results, first they opened up rules holes that created deathstar combos and now they are slipping Forge World in and now they are trying to slap more super heavies and defensive kits into the game all for the all mighty dollar. While I respect they are a company and their job is to make money, it is at the expense of the quality of the product that makes us want to be a consumer for it.

Then the rumors are flying at first saying there is a 7th on the way, which is a lie as not enough time has passed but there is discussions of online updates aka 6.1 rules to keep the changes "soft" and not cause sticker shock to the players. Wow, what a load....if they do small updates and sell them cheaper, say $30, do three of these, they make the same if not more than they do on a new book and not even releasing a new rules set. Low work and high profits! All electronic also! Everyone is saying "wow what a concept"! NOT! GW did this I think it was back in 4th, where you had to have a stack of White Dwarf mags to keep p with the meta of the changing rules.  It was in print instead, but it is the same concept. It made things very complicated and hard to keep up with which is what caused them to move to 5th and then 6th which became a train wreck because they didn't think ahead on their changes.

Oh well, to me it is like watching Nascar and you see the wreck about to happen and you can't do a damm thing about it but watch.

Maybe with the Ork book on the rise I may slip back into gaming casual and try a local tournament or two to see what the waters are like again. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

I have seen the mythical unicorn of 40k!

By this I mean, the gamer that can afford the overpriced Forge World Prices, namely in this case the star ship corridors for ship fighting! I joked with the guy and asked if he won the lottery and he just laughed and said no he was military deployed overseas so he had a ton of pay just building up in an account and nowhere to spend it.....must be nice!

It was an amazing work by the company. Sad that he only just had it primered black instead of painted up looking all awesome yet.

Still the game looked fun and I may drag some stuff with me next week if the guy shows and play with them in between doing demos.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Just in case you have more dollars than sense!

Astartes Ultra – A Complete Ultramarines Chapter

Just out by Games Workshop!
Need nearly 1200 marines?
Got about $12k to blow?
Do you want to feel like the Donald Trump of 40k?
Do you always strive to be the envy of your friends?
Have you always wanted to play Apocalypse but you don't have an army big enough?
Tired of your wife and looking for a reason for a divorce?
Don't worry! Just clean out the kid's college fund!
Then this deal is for you Mr. Dumbass!
Hurry now and get Free SHIPPING!

I assume this is a joke by Games Workshop, but sadly it is not April 1st and with some of their past offerings this is more than likely a serious thing. I'm surprised the didn't offer a lay-a-way plan! Serious, if I am buying something like this, I want he entire lot painted to Eavy Metal standards and ready for me to play with when it arrives!

Monday, September 9, 2013

GW and the state of gaming for me.

When I started to play Games Workshop games back in the early 90’s I loved it. The background was cool, the miniatures were great and the rules were fantastic. There was a variety of games offered by the company including Epic, Gorkamorka, Morhdiem, Necromunda, Warhammer Fantasy and Warhammer 40k to name a few. What was great was playing great games with a group of guys at the shop, eating pizza, laughing and having a great time playing great games.

The golden age has passed I think and GW is in a decline. When I went to work for them in early 2000, I read the “little red book” and understood what it meant to work for the company and meeting great people during that time that are no longer in the company. I could see the attitude changing even then from that of a game company to a corporate money hoar that cares very little for their customers, just the bottom line. While it is fine to be a business, you have to keep customers to stay in business, of late I have watched price increases (including marking up product in the stores I worked for) and the hikes have been steeper and more frequent than ever. Kits are just getting silly in prices, sure the model is of good quality, but is it reasonable in price? No, simply put they are going with a business model of hiking the prices, making less product but still making higher profits at the moment as the price increase overtakes the loss of sales. Anyone with any knowledge of how the economy works calls this a “short gain” it will work only for a short period of time before it will collapse as a business model. This will be the end of GW, I feel that it is on the horizon and they are hitting that crest as we speak. They can make or break the company, if it breaks we may have no more than 5-10 years before it becomes a little fish in a large and growing pond of games out there.

GW has also had a serious bad attitude with their Legal Department, they are happy to slap out cease orders on everything and have become virtual Nazi’s when it comes to showing teaser items and new releases. They instead are trying to promote their magazine or rather their game catalog to be their preview medium as they simply can’t for the life of them figure out why White Dwarf sales are done. Here’s a hint GW, the content sucks go back to the old school days of adding stories, content and good game reports for example and you will sell more copies again! Speaking of Legal, they go after companies that make products they don’t, claiming IP violation….maybe this is the case, maybe not. In any case they feel they own more than they actually do in the IP world and feel entitled to milking the tit for every drop they can. Still, the Chapterhouse lawsuit and given them the finger and has drawn the line in the sand that if someone stands up to them, they may be in the wrong.

The quality of the game has also gone downhill. In an effort to boost the game, they went with “bigger is better” in their models and codex design. Every army in Fantasy and 40k are getting bigger beasties and vehicles. Of course with a nice price as well! Oh yea, you want 2-3 don’t you….cha-ching $$$$!

Flyers have totally broken the game for 40k more than anything, sure there are other units that have popped up in books that have made people shake their head and go what? Of course there are those that are going “cool” as long as it benefits them, but when you are getting screwed over by those same hyper powerful units, it isn’t no longer “cool”. Players following netlist trends are copying more and more lists that people find that are broken and work, allowing them an easier win. This part is what really bothers me but is just an evil fact of the information era today. People have stopped thinking when it comes to army lists; they would rather “research” and then copy/buy that list for an easy winning formula instead of bothering to figure it out for themselves. We have moved into an era of wargaming where people don’t think as much as they used to. We no longer are challenged with making a “good” army list but rather a “winning” army list, or aka WAAC- WIN AT ALL COSTS.

Even the player base is starting to change as has the attitude of gamers. People are placing more and more focus on competitive gaming than just having fun. They again focus on these power lists and winning more than just having a good time and being social. Which his one of the largest reasons I enjoy tournaments, 3 games against 3 different opponents is how I see it as an outing with my friend(s) to throw some dice and have fun. Yet, it is hard to enjoy a game when the person you are player is a huge power gamer and has a hyper competitive list. You watch it chew your army apart and you think “wow this is about as fun as watching paint dry”.  There always are those one or two players at an event and I or my friend (or both of us) tends to draw those types of people and then just have a miserable game.

I have not played Warhammer Fantasy since 6th edition, I have tried a few games of 7th and 8th, didn’t like it.  They watered down the Psychology that made my Vampire Counts totally useless and only specific builds are viable if you want to be able to play it seems from my reading. The magic is another aspect; I just don’t like the current breakdown of how it plays. Plus they keep plugging all these “large kits” and other crap that makes me shake my head and clearly see GW wants you to buy the latest and greatest big thing. Maybe the next edition will be a savior. I am holding my breath. Already I have sold all my Fantasy armies except my Vampire Counts as frankly, I have not played them much in years and I don’t enjoy the game. I keep the VC for nostalgia and hopes that a better edition will rise from the grave.

Next, GW has killed both their Historicals and Fanatic divisions…guess there wasn’t profit in those areas. Or rather, they would have to work harder to make money there….which is sad, the Historicals had a great line of books including Legends of the Old West and Legends of the High Seas, both great games, similar to their Fanatic skirmish games and a blast….really? You just had to update a book and print it. Not like there was a huge investment there boys and girls and there was a fan base, a fan base you have sent to another company now. They thank you GW. The worst loss was all the support to Blood Bowl, Necromunda, Morhdiem and other great Fanatic games. To be honest, when I started to play, THIS was what I really enjoyed. The story, the flavor and the fun of gaming with these titles. GW could have done so much to revive this line with minimal investment and could have turned profit by taking advantage of the crappy economy. Develop up some Necromunda multi part plastic kits…sell both for 40k and Necromunda, cha-ching! Who would not have killed for a multi-part Blood Bowl team? Yea, pose your own team in plastics?

The only saving grace is a rumor this year that in October that an Inquisitor Skirmish game is going to roll out that targets 2-4 players with 10 or so models for each player with a new product line of minis and scaled to heroic level instead of the 40mm old scale. This appeals to me as I loved the Inquisition concept, loved all the books and feel this could be a saving grace if they did a good job with the rules. One can only hope and wait.

 I have decided to keep my Chaos, Dark Angels, Space Wolves, Imperial Guard (small) and Orks in my collection. The Tau are about to go up for sale and my Necrons have already been sold about 6 months ago. I just cleared out the last little bit of my Sister’s of Battle metal figures also. I am tired to trying to keep up with everything, I am going to consolidate my collection and play with what I got.

I will keep playing and trying to enjoy what joy is still left in this game and I will be back to adding more content to the blog as well with discussing things about the new Space Marine Codex.! Until then GW, you have been warned and oh yea....

I just love these images that I found on the internet! 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

A fool and his money are soon parted!

Wow, they are really trying to appeal to the kiddies and power gamers....this is a horrible kit, it looks like crap! A 5 year old glued a bunch of extra stuff together with leftovers is what I see. 

Another sign of the decline, their ideas are getting dumber and dumber.....the pricing is also just wow, puts me without words. I doubt I will be buying the new Marine book as I have Space Wolves and Blood Angels....I may get a Sternguard box to get the bits depending....on what the box contents are like.

GW is starting to lose another round of customers....I know several people that are not buying as much as they used to, trading, selling off stuff, prizes from tournaments and buying discount online. While the last hurts a retailer, other items are bought from LGS to keep them in business, but not this crap. 

GW HQ Execs! 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

July 2k Darkside Tournament (narrative only)

Been a long time since I have posted...been a busy past few months.

My friend Chris and I hit the Darkside 40k tournament bringing 2000 points to have a day out playing some 40k games. After eating at Yoders (Amish food) we hit the store and setup our armies.

I had:
Sammuel with Speeder
2 Land Raider Crusaders with mutli-meltas
Land Speeder Shroud with Heavy Bolter
1 Command squad with Banner of Devastation
1 Tactical squad of 10 with a plasma gun and missile launcher (with Flakk)
1 Full Bike squad with 2 plasma guns and a Multi-melta Attack Bike
3 Partial Squads (3 Bikes) of Bikes with 2 Plasma and MM Attack Bike
1 Partial Squad with 2 Plasma Guns

I forgot the chip for my camera so I could not take any photos! Arg!

I got to my first game against a new Eldar player….he had three full units of Swooping Hawks with the named Swooping Hawk Character, Exarch, a Seer Council on Bikes, 4 Sniper Squads and 3 War Walkers with assorted weapons with a Wraithlord. He had not played since 4th edition and of course they hand out Adepticon Gladiator missions! Gah!

Overall, the game went well ending in a draw with me in the lead with a few points. The new Codex and not played a game since 4th really slowed down the game that I feel impacted the score. Throw in the complex and horrible rules written for Adepticon Gladiator and I am not surprised by this result at all. Sure, I could have clubbed him like a baby seal and took a huge win but that isn’t how I play. I know others at a tournament think that if you go you should know your rules and they won’t help you at all or very little. My only downfall during the game is not knowing the Eldar codex well as I have only glanced at the rules and not read them.

Mike was a great player to play against and I would enjoy a more social game with him with an ice cold beer or soda on a casual game night.

The second game was against Carlos that is part of the Skull and Bones crew (a local gaming club). They tend to be very competitive and his list was that and more, hyper-competitive is what I would say. Min/Max all the way and clearly out to gun for a win and while a tournament is about trying to win building an army to win for you. As always Carlos is a great guy to game against as usual but the army was just not enjoyable to play against.

He had two small cultist units, a Chaos Sorcerer, 3 Helldrakes (two with baleflamers), 3 Maulers (assault versions), a huge load of Slaanesh Demons, Damonettes on Steeds (a large unit with a character on a steed), a Greater Demon of Tzeench and a Soul Grinder.

In the end, I managed to damage the army despite the fact I made two tactical errors. The first was not shooting at full BS for my first Crusader (it didn’t move) and keeping the bikes nicely grouped up for the baleflamer (which I will admit are broken and I own one, I feel almost dirty getting a second with a baleflamer which is why I have not.) The dice was the other factor as I wiffed on several melta shots, I knew Carlos threw the armor out there knowing if I blew it up he would have a rough game, if it survived he had the game in a bag. Plus Carlos was one lucky SOB (and not Sister of Battle) when it came to jinks and saves on his big guys with that 5+ invulnerable saves. The Adepticon Gladiator rules again just pissed on this game with the weird scoring and made me not want to play in future events that use these missions.

My last game was pretty good despite the loss in the end but was a good game down to the wire. A strong Blood Angel list but not over the top: 2 Sanguinary Priests, 2 Jump squads (I think some melta), 1 large Death Company with a Priest (may have been the named one), Tycho in the flying bread box of doom, 2 Vindicators and 2 Furisoso Dreadnoughts….

Again, some bad dice luck didn’t help me much again but we did go down to the wire with both armies bloodied and battered on both sides.

It was a tie for best painted between Chris and me from what I understand and won it, we joked with rock, paper and scissors to see who gets the prize! Hey $15 got me a pot of paint and some Bolt Action Order dice!

It felt good to get out of the house with all the crazy stuff with my wife’s family with the surgery and it helped me recharge some. I think Chris needed to get away for the day also and have some fun despite everything. The dice was my worst complaint along with the really bad choice of the Gladiator Missions from Adepticon. The standard ones, those are fine in my book as I rarely have had issues with them. I figure I could shift the list around some to make the squads slightly larger perhaps to give them a bit of an edge in being able to survive as 3 man squads are just too small it seems.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

GW going Skirmish? Again?

This was on Bell of Lost Souls....

via TastyTaste on Blood of Kittens

GW is about to enter the skirmish scene with the release of
Warhammer 40k: Inquisition

Inquisition is designed for 2-4 players and each side will use custom cards and dice. Army sizes consist of about 5-10 models per side. A whole new set of models drawn from Blanche artwork will accompany. The game should be flexible as you can make and design your own Inquisitorial retinue. As for rules complexity that is anyone's guess, but the general marketing goal for Inquisition is a gateway game into the greater Warhammer 40k universe.

Beyond that GW, seems to be taking cues from Kickstarter projects like Sedition Wars and home-brewed rules like Inq28 for Inquisitor. This also might not end up as a limited edition run, but that all depends on sales, and if any support is continued will be done through digital expansions and updates.

This would be kick ass if true! Still if they had just repackaged Necromunda, made some new plastic and metal figures the line would have knocked their socks off! Still, I am happy about this as this could prove to be an interesting twist to 40k, imagine Inquisition Tournaments!!!! 

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day: We will not forget.

bald eagle head and american flag

To all that have served, I thank you for your service.
To all those that have died to protect our freedom, I thank you.
We as Americans are not perfect, but we try to uphold what is right.
We may not often get things right but that is an element of freedom...choice.
Be proud of those that served our country and give them the honor they deserve.
To fight takes courage, to fight with conviction takes character.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Kalm - Shots of the Game

Here are shots of the game, I'll try to write out a narrative later!

My round one Ork opponent!

My friend Chris discussing his list with one of the few female players there. He later told us she said she had only been playing a few weeks but we both saw her last year with marines. This year she had orks....hahahahha

Early in the game...charge!

Dark Angels Anchor and hold the line.

My Round 2 opponent with White Scars

Forward boys! After scout movement!

Random shot of a well dressed (and color coordinated) Tyranid player. Yes his army is yellow also.

The battle of the bikers begins!

Dark Angels hold the center.

Scouts catch Samuel off guard and cheap shot him!

Round 3 opponent with Marines!

Carnage on turn 2!

George Flowers our former Warboss retires but gets a cool axe to kill anyone that pisses him off!

Lee walks away with another trophy! Best Sportsman!

The Kalm 2013 - Armies on Parade

Well, I have been slacking a little so here are a few shots from the Kalm before the games broke out. The weather sucked (it was raining and cold) so people was packed inside so it was hard to move around and get decent shots of several armies. I did the best I could!

My Army: Dark Angels with Blood Angels


More Orks


Nice Orks

Great split paint Marines

Snappy Necron Army

More Orks

More Orks

Close shot of the orks

Nice Marine Army

Another Marine

Objective Markers (cheap and cool)

Our Shot glasses this year!

Lee's Orks

Theo's Chaos Army

Dark Eldar

More Marines

My Round 1 Ork Opponent

Very Cool Wolf Pelt Work on the Raider

Someone loves college sports....yes they are painted a college teams colors.

Another nice Ork army.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Florida takes home two Blood Bowl Awards!

Last year I was the only Florida player, Chris had not interest in playing at that time. This year, he and Lee both entered with me into the Blood Bowl tournament, I think it was a total of 8 players and I feel one of the best times ever.

We had pizza and beer with Blood Bowl! Yea! Can't get better than that!

David, my first turn opponent! Orks was his team.
 He is running a grot revolutionary army tomorrow!

Tom, the Skaven player that smoked me.

Mathew, orks for the last round!

Lee got  most offense (what I won last year)
Chris won Best Sportsman

The awards! Yes, that is real bottles of booze with this years logo!

Tomorrow 40k! I am gunning for a trophy!