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Saturday, March 23, 2013

Container Store Raid!

My wife and I stopped at the container store today and I grabbed up a few choice items to test out as possible storage products. In all, the three cost me $12 and some change and I am happy with the quality (plus they are  MADE IN THE USA). I admit it is getting harder to find products within our own country and frustrating at times.

The loot!

The shoe one costing less than $2 holds 4 Rhinos (could put one more in) in various methods including 2x2 facing or like this with two long and two flipped the other way.

The next size up, holds a flyer nicely, just add padding. Just $4!

The next one (a sweater box) holds 4 of the standard GW trays, the first one goes in with a slight bow but when all 4 are in, you can add a foam topper on top and everything is snug and secure! Not bad for $6.

Side shot to see how everything packs in nicely.

9 New GW Paints!

9 New Paints join the Citadel line, are they worthwhile or crap? Of late the new paint line seems to be hit or miss. I plan give them a try, they are apparently for extreme highlights and appear to be very bright. Figure khaki, Blue Horror, Flayed One Flesh, Gauss Blasters Green and Dorn Yellow will be my test choices. Lilac is interesting but not sure how useful. Same for Orange, Pink and the Aqua blue color one.

What are your thoughts?

Inquisitor Giveaway!

Just spreading the word if you want to win this cool guy!
Check it out here!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Death of the Gaming Store

I found this video to be very good and well detailed on many of the bad policies that GW has put out.

Sad that another retailer is gone but they also lost a brick and mortar store. Great job GW!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Competitive vs. Hyper-Competitive Gaming Styles Part 2

Found these two great gaming articles, they got me thinking more on the topic....

What’s Wrong With Winning – Revisited

More About What’s Wrong With Winning

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Competitive vs. Hyper-Competitive Gaming Styles

To me this image captures a WACC Hyper-competitive player to the letter.

This again is another sore subject with some people but it does bear honest thought on the topic. All of my games were Competitive and two was what I consider Hyper-Competitive. What is the difference?

Competitive: A balanced and good list, built on the ideal of fair play and a challenge for both the player and the opponent to use. The list does not carry the player (as a crutch to win) but rather relies on the player being a good general and the luck of the dice.

Hyper-Competitive: This is a clear case of min/max design, death star units, using Forge World that is there to give you a clear advantage, modeling to advantage and trick pony lists as I call them (where you take X, Y and Z to do this result, a good example here would be taking the Doom from the Nids list and giving them the psychic power that mimics his own ability so you can “double doom” an opponent. Legal in the rules but exploitive) to name a few. These lists are clearly  heavy handed and intended to be very Win At All Costs (WAAC as it is called) and takes very little skill to use. A good example would be this: Two guys are to dig a large hole. One has a shovel and the other has a backhoe digging machine. The guy with the shovel will take longer, will have a workout and have a sense of accomplishment when finished for doing a hard day’s job. The other guy with the backhoe will spend a ton of money to achieve his goal quickly and will have little care about the accomplishment of the task as there was no challenge to the activity other than the fact he is already done and inside the house drinking a beer and watching TV.

Out of my 6 singles games, 4 armies were highly competitive and gave me a strong challenge and forced me to think. None of these lists was lightweights either: Space Wolves/Grey Knights, 2 Tyranids (with large bug lists, Doom, heavy psychic, etc) and a damm good well build Slaanesh Chaos list that was stunning to look at as well as very well balanced and thought out with zero Forge World in any of the four armies. There was some doubling in the list which is fine, redundancy is ok but cut and paste armies is just again a sign of min/maxing. Every one of these generals offered a strong sense of game play and was a joy to play. I won only one of these with a full score of 20 against the Chaos player, the next was 14 solid points against the Space Wolf/Grey Knights player, the last two was slight margins (one win and one loss) with 9 to 11 (9 being my score) and 7 to 2 (7 being my score). These games tell me we were level and were a solid game.

One of my worst games was against the Eldar player that took first place, looking at his scores he pretty much with a record of three scores of 20 (max points), one score of 2 with the remaining two a 11 and 18. This list had a mix of Dark Eldar and Eldar with the Baron with a unit of Wraith Guard to give a cover bonus with Eldrad in tow. Throw in 3 War Walkers with multi-shot guns with a psychic power for rerolls made them pretty damm effective. Slip in a Warp Hunter Forge World vehicle with a large high AP blast and a Hellhound style torrent shot as well. Sprinkle in some cheap scoring units with some Fire Warriors with the Exarch manning a defense gun at an Aegis line. The mission was tough against me as it was Hammer and Anvil and my dice did play against me but I was just steamrolled by the rerolls, twin linked and high AP and all the other tricks this list had packed in it. After a point it wasn’t even a game, it was a slaughter. To me a win isn’t enjoyable if the other guy didn’t have a good time also and I steamroll them with little effort.

The other game was pretty much the same, again with two Forge World stalkers, two large units of Wraiths with a Lord in Destroyer body with 4 squads of 5 Warriors with transports that fly. This was a simple list, tie up the opponent with the monstrous creatures that was modeled flat (so they could get cover, bad form also IMO, what part of monstrous creature was missed?), and then use the Wraiths to finish off your opponent with the Lords giving Preferred Enemy. Drop Warriors late in the game to grab objectives. Again the dice was against me but even good tactics can’t hold out against a steamroller designed army. Again, I found this not very fun to play against as this was a clear min/max list with FW and tricks to carry it again. This army again had a nice 20-18-18-4-2 record. I know that the 2 was from the Eldar player I spoke about above, at that point those two lists was two bricks thrown against one another for the final round.

Again, please note I am talking about the player’s list, not the player of either of the above lists. Both were great guys and we didn’t have any real issues in the game. This is strictly an analysis of the games and the composition of the armies I faced. I am old school for tournaments with balance and comp are things to me that are important for a solid and balanced list, neither of these would have passed under the old system and feel this is a failing weakness of competitive gaming allowing anything goes for lists as it encourages these crutch lists.

Nobody likes to get hit in the nuts. Keep it above the belt and fair play to all!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Forge World at Gaming Events: My thoughts.

Well, I figure I would touch on the first set of thoughts about the event I was just at. A majority of the armies did not have Forge World but the few that did had powerful units mixed among the armies that started to raise a few concerns about this trend. If I recall, I think the average was about 25% of the player base had Forge World of some type and number in their list.

I know this is a sensitive subject and many people argue it should be allowed at both GT and local events as it “balances the game” and “adds to the game”.  This is the point I have to agree to disagree, it adds more units that can be abused now legally by allowing Forge World and it does not balance the game at all. If it was intended to be in the core game, it would have been written into the core rules and the army books, not published as special books by a sister company. Yea, I know they have released the “40k ok” markings saying they are legal for 40k and have since pulled the wording prior from their old FW books where it said “you should have your opponents permission before using”. Can you say GW money grab? Thought you could, GW is out to grab every dollar they can, by changing the brand that way, they can now suck more cash out of your wallet at the cost of the quality of the brand of their game and the rules. Do they care? No. Spend your money on that stuff, yes they do. Many others would agree that Forge World does not belong in mainstream gaming such as events like this or event at local RTTs.

One person in a discussion said that it should be allowed so Eldar and Tau can have flyers to deal with other flyers. The Eldar/Dark Eldar player I went against didn’t use any Forge World to balance that at all neither did the Tau player I saw. Instead he took the Warp Hunter tank, at 135 points, that thing is a steal is all I can say. Large AP pie plate and High AP Torrent template plus a skimmer with all the trimmings of rules to add to that like jink and then tossed in an Aegis line with a defense gun like everyone else.

Everything I saw in armies was Decimators, Warp Hunters, Vulture Gunships and Canoptek Stalkers to name a few things. Mind you some was not just a single model but at least two. Did I see Grot Tanks or anything that wasn’t powerful and simply fun or cool? Nope, it was a power grab exploiting what was made legal for the event. I wonder if some of those lists would have done performed the same if they stuck with their codex?

Plus, I should add the guy I played with the Canoptek Stalkers modeled them flat to the ground. Yes, a monstrous creature that has a profile slightly larger than a ratling sniper. Can we say modeling for cover advantage? Oh yea, add to a hyper-competitive army and you have a tough list but not very fun to be on the other side of the table.

I also think it is already rough enough for players to understand around a dozen codex books and the core rules that have been out for just a year. Now you want to introduce almost another dozen books to the mix and new vehicles and such that nobody knows about? Plus, in a timed event you now have to waste time to ask, “Hey, can I see the book to know what I am up against…” or you are at the mercy of the other guy telling you or not telling you, then smiling as he screws your army each turn. Yea, that sounds like fun! Sign me up! Five minutes or a bit more to read something in a Forge World book may not sound like much but when you are running out of time that time becomes pretty damm precious if you ask me. I’d rather be playing more than trying to worry about some obscure book materials.

I have also asked the Organizer how many of the top 10 lists had Forge World in them and how many was the top armies in that list in percentage. I think it will be a shocking total as I know two players I played against went to the #1 and #2 spots for the last round and had to play one another, both with Forge World in very hyper competitive lists. 

Plus, on a side note Local game stores do not sell the books or the kits, so why should they support it? They make no profit from it and allowing money to be spent away from the store is just hurting their profits not helping. So, let’s allow something to put them out of business? Yea, that is a good business plan! At a GT, yea you can get away with a bit more. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

The Crucible Aftermath!


Well, I had a good time despite the lack of support from my dice and some over the top lists that I had to face that felt more like playing against a steamroller than playing Warhammer, but I will discuss that in my series of Crucible articles that will include:

1)      Rankings and breakdown.
2)      Thoughts on Forge World at events.
3)      Hyper Competitive lists vs. Competitive Lists. Yes, there is a difference.
4)      Team and Single Tournament Game overview with pictures.

The Good:

  • Tim and company did a smash up job running Crucible this year as it was the first ever 40 k entries to the event. I want to give a huge thanks to Tim and company for their hard work.
  • 9 games in one weekend!
  • Won a door prize of Imperial Guardsmen!
  • Placed Third in the Team Tournament with our Lion and the Wolf.
  • Every game I could not complain about the player as everyone was great to meet.
  • I placed mid of the pack in final standings despite 2 major losses and 1 minor loss.

The Bad:

  • My dice sucked. Even after changing them on Sunday.
  • The gaming area was hot, very hot!
  • One of the Elevators gave out, so only one worked the entire weekend.
  • My first game on Sunday was 30 minutes late to start. The guy overslept due to time change. I could have been a dick and took the auto win but I played it out to a loss.

The Ugly:

  • A couple of hyper-competitive lists that I had to play.  Which I will talk about later.
  • Forge World, it belongs in friendly games and Apocalypse games, not events.