Saturday, 24 June 2017

We'll be forever blowing bubbles...

Painted up three converted bubble chukkas, because the new rules for them look hilarious.

For those without the relevant index, for a bubble chukka you roll 4D6. Then you and your opponent take it in turns, starting with you, to assign each result rolled to shots, str, Damage and AP. So if I was shooting regular marines, the 1 would be straight on Damage. Shooting some daemon thing with an inv save, chuck that 1 on the rather irrelevant AP. Looks like a lot of fun anyway...

Painted them in my Bad Moons colours, as they already have traktor kannons and plenty grots, so I can add these/swap these in to taste.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Goodbye to Seventh Edition

In the last eight days, I have seen seventh edition off in style, attending not one, but two tournaments. They were small doubles events, and it gave me a chance to do another nutty showcase force, project: dangerzone. Pictures of some cool models from the second event, Double Trouble, will be spread throughout the post.

My first force was a CAD with lots of flashgitz, and the second event I didn't need to take a troops choice, so the grots were dropped in favour of more flashgitz. The forces were broadly the same. Lot's of dakka, no combat, completely irrational and imbalanced force but it's a theme and let's hope for the best.

As you might expect, such excellent tactical forethought saw me win a grand total of one game from six...

The first event wasn't so bad, my lack of combat ability could be made up by my Genestealer Cult partner, with the multitude of rending attacks he could take down pretty much anything. Admittedly we got off to a bad start... a space wolves blood angel mix, the blood angel part being 4 dreads in drop pods with those S6 rending template 2 things... ouch. Cooked my orks, damaged my ships, and annihilated the genestealers on overwatch. We got buggered there.

The second game went much better. Against a combined Eldar force, normally wraithguard are to be feared but when they are walking into the path of 30 str 5 apD6 shots (not to mention str 7 large blast ap3 cannon fire from the frigates) they aren't so tough any more. We also had the GSC coming and going and grabbing objectives at will, and eventually tabled our opponents.

Third game we got unlucky in not getting either the warlord trait we wanted, any useful psychic powers, or the right roll on the cult ambush table. The guys with autoguns, sure they can arrive and assault. The genestealer primarch and brood of genestealers? They can turn up and shoot. Great. Ta. Much obliged...

Overall we finished 7th out of 10, not unreasonable given Ken had never used GSC and I had never used Flashgitz...

So the second event was Double Trouble... a strange doubles event where you turn up and get partnered up on the day... and it changes each round. Now at this I didn't win a single game, but technically you didn't have to... the scores for each team (both VP and Bloodpoints) are totalled up from each game. So if for instance you lost (VP) 25-24, 23-22, 32-30... but the other winning teams then won their other games 1-0... well your VPs for the event would be 76, theirs may only be twenty something... So basically, you don't have to win the game, just score as much as possible before you die.

This made the games feel quicker, more gung ho. I guess the best comparison would be the 20/20 cricket, where they don't have days to tactically play, they only have 20 overs so they'd better wallop the thing and hope for the best. I don't care if running and grabbing that objective results in me getting tabled, if it scores me another three points in the final turn then I'll take it thank you very much.

I'll admit I was a sceptic about going to a small scale event without a buddy (normally I prefer big armies of my own, but will do these occasional little things just to have a chance to hang out with my buddy for the day) but overall it worked quite well and the format of the event, where the best prizes are in the raffle rather than for actually winning, I think helps encourage people to not be arseholes and or everyone to have fun.

As for my games, well the first game I was paired with custodies against Dark Angels and Necrons. Now with hindsight, the event special rule that we all count as Battle Brotehrs, we should have taken advantage of... we should have got my open topped battlewagon to give the custodies a ride while my guys laid down fire support. But as it is, we struggled with two small forces to deal with the several targets our opponents put in front of us, and we lost this one by a solid margin.

The second game saw me teamed up with Cawl and a host of servitors (6 grav 3 haywire) facing Heresey Dark Angels and Dark Eldar... This was a much closer game but the withering hail of bolter fire from the dark angls, using legion specific rules to stand still and fire twice, basically cut me down. Also a venom that never seemed to miss took the servitors out, and while Cawl was left to hold the day, they overtook us on VP.

The final game was disastrous. We were facing an Iron Hands player running a Land Raider Spearhead. That's basically three land raiders that ignore all damage table results except explodes, and have IWND so can regenerate lost hull points. Right. I asked my teammate if he had anything that could deal with that... In his deathwatch force. He had a sergeant with a meltabomb, and 4 frag cannons if they got close (they would, they were in a pod. Other than that I could ram the thing with my battlewagon, but that would probably hurt me more than him anyway. We could certainly hurt the Blood Angel player... except he deployed his troops in the Land Raiders. Ah. So we dropped the pod with frag cannons down, they were rerolling 1s to hit, they got 8 hits, needed 5 to glance... One glance. Ah. They were duly Redeemed by the Land Raider they targeted. Meanwhile my Battlewagon got shot and was immobilised (there goes plan B) and my truk got accidentally clipped by a scattering plasma cannon shot, and immobilised (there goes plan kamikaze) Strangely, we were winning this game on VP most of the way through, they only overtook us on VP when they tabled us in turn 5, but it was nowehere near being a close game. Oh, if only the deathwatch had been by my side against the filthy Dark Eldar and those delicious Grav servitors had been with me for the final game. Ah well, luck of the draw I guess. Oh, the meltabomb sergeant, swung and missed... but he got a 1 and could reroll those. Nope, another 1. Really not our day.

I stuck around for the prizegiving but was in a bit of a hurry to get home so don't know my final placing till Alex puts the full results on his blog, but I didn't leave the event empty handed... my Project: Dangerzone got the award for Best Conversions. It got 19 votes (28 competitors) so I'm quite pleased with that. It's what makes all the hours faffing around on ebay and with lego worth it!

Overall, a good week off work with some fun at the weekends, but a rather bruising encounter that shows the Orks have a long way to go, which they hopefully soon will. I did play about 15 minutes of an intro game while I was there and it seems fairly straightforward, and I'm looking forward to getting my teeth into it and learning the armies. The Index books are thicker than I anticipated, so given I ordered the full collection, it's going to be giving me quite a bit to read in the next couple weeks. Think I shall have to focus on one army at a time... definitely starting with Orks though. They've got their good old mob rule back at last!

Friday, 2 June 2017

One Eyelid Flickers...

Played a bloodbowl friendly on Tuesday, and after my opponents Rat Ogre "Bonesnapper" had pushed into the midst of my Black Orcs, one of my Boyz didn't like that and blitzed him... perhaps a tad too aggressively for a friendly. Rolled a 10 for the armour, so didn't need the Mighty Blow. Rolled an 11 for the injury, so didn't need the MB rule then either. It doesn't carry over to the actual injury roll, but as I rolled a 68 on that it wouldn't have mattered even if it did! An emphatic string of dice rolls.

A result in the 60s basically means "Dead" so my opponent was slightly miffed. The person watching our game joked that I should make the player a commemorative fur coat or something. Well, you know me when challenged...

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

So, Bubble Chukka Rules got leaked...

I have always liked the idea of the bubble chukka, I feel it went great with the random nature of orks, but the old rules were never satisfying. You rolled a D6 and it gave you the strength and AP of the weapon. So you wanted a low roll if you wanted to crack armour... but then you'd struggle to wound. But if you got high strength, they'd make their saves. If only the two rolls were separate. Sure, sometimes you'd get str 1 AP 6, but other times you'd get str 6 AP1...

Now from the rules leaked, you roll 4 dice and assign one each to shots, str, AP and damage... the added randomness being you and your opponent take turns to assign the dice to the different options. A roll of four 6s could be devastating! Of course a roll of four 1s would be atrocious. But hey, that's Orks!

So, with that in mind, I have been scratch building something this evening...

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Project: Dangerzone - Complete

I feel the need... the need... for, well, sleep actually. Damn thunderstorms waking me up at 5 in the morning...

But before I go to bed, I shall show off what I have accomplished over the past couple evenings. The last few flash gitz and kaptin badruk are now complete, and join the compatriots.

I have looked at putting them all on my display board, but as that lead to the whole thing looking rather cluttered, what I shall probably do is place a few of each squad and the kaptin on strategic vessels, then keep the rest in the case. I'm not exactly planning to wow people with an astounding paint scheme anyway, it's more the ludicrous conversions and the awesome theme that I am aiming for.

So once again, here we are.


Thursday, 25 May 2017

Project: Dangerzone - Nearing Completion

I am extremely pleased to say that I have almost finished project: dangerzone, just 5 flash gitz and kaptin badruk to paint... I reckon I can do those in the one week I have left :)

Here's a quick video showing my vehicles on their display board... keep the sound on ;)


Yes, that music IS coming from the Karrier... got an MP3 player hidden away in there.

I have several pilots scattered through the fleet, and have done helmets that kinda resemble Maverick, Goose, Iceman, Slider, Hollywood, Wolfman, Merlin, Cougar, Sundwon and Jester. That just leaves Viper, so I might have to paint up a loose deffkopta on a stand at some point just to round the collection off.

I have also made use of the forgeworld grots to make it look like a ship at work, from adding ordnance to a fighter about to launch, to keeping lookout, guiding aircraft to repairing the radar.

I have also thrown in a few little comedic references, such as a sneak peak of Red Orktober (don't plan to make one but you know me I probably will at some point)

and of course, the place where they keep the kaptins log...


Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Board Game Corner: Star Wars Empire vs Rebellion strategy card game

One of my club members picked this up with a Waterstones voucher or something, so I thought I'd give it a try and see if it's any good.

This is a tactical card game where one side plays the rebels and the other (well duh) the Empire. You get a deck of cards each which include some standard cards, and a selection of 4 of 8 characters. You play rounds in a strange sort of blackjack where you try to get close to but not surpass a target score, as determined by the randomly drawn event. Whoever wins gets the event, and the first to 7 points worth of events is the winner.

Now it has to be said, you play first to 7 points, and there are 42 points worth of events in the deck, so there's a fair amount of replay value to this straight away. It's pot luck if you get lots of minor skirmishes or just a few big ones... someone could theoretically win 3 games and the whole title, whilst their opponent could win six and be still needing one more win. So it's a game that can be played many times.

Each side secretly chooses a strategy that will affect the outcome at the end (as long as you haven't gone bust) The event card has all relevant information... the score in the bottom left is the target, and the icons next to it the max amount of cards in play at one time. The numbers on the top right are the value of the card (towards that 7) and how many influence you earn for winning (influence let's you reset exhausted cards, which can be quite handy) The stuff in the bottom right is a reward/penalty for whoever wins/loses.

Each turn a player can do one of four things.

Play a card from the deck into their play area (as long as they aren't already at the maximum card level)
Exhaust a card to use the power written on it (basically tap the card similar to most card games, it then becomes it's side on value, which for most cards is identical but for character cards is a significant reduction)
Spend influence to reset an exhausted card

If both players pass, you cease and count score.

So for example the two sides have dealt a few cards out, they'll use a few powers to maybe upset their opponents score or refine their own, hell sometimes you may use a character power just so it is worth 1 point instead of the 6 that might make you go bust.

Having played through this, sometimes the cards go against you, and you find yourself in the situation where you're going bust, can't deal any more cards, and the only powers you could potentially tap are to mess with your opponents score or to prep your deck... neither of which matters if your opponent can take a 1 point for a win because you've gone bust.

Anyway, in the example above both players are at max cards and they're all tapped out, so unless someone has influence to spend to refresh a card, they both have to pass, and the round ends.

Looking at the scores, we can see it is currently a 17-17 tie. No one wins! But that's where the strategy cards come in.

Now what the imperial player doesn't know, is the rebels had this ace in the hole... an extra 2 points, putting them bang on the target of 19! A victory surely?

Except Palpatine still has a trick up his volumous sleeve... the winner is in fact the loser, and the Empire win the day!

Thus that event would score 1 for the imperials, the decks would be reset, and a new event dealt. You can't use the same strategum again so you will work through all the options, and as the game goes on, the rebel will know the Imperial player won't catch him out with that sneaky "the loser wins" trick again... at least, not till he's tried his other tricks first.

So, like I said, this game is quick, fairly easy, and has some good replay value to it. The sides are aso balanced, and that's where I start to have a bit of a grumble. The sides are perfectly balanced. As in, they have the same deck. You get different pictures on the cards, but the decks are the same. The Military card for the Empire and the rebels does exactly the same. They have different values, but we each have a 3, a 4, a 5 Recon somewhere in our deck. Even the characters each have an exact counterpart - Luke and Vader do the exact same thing.

After playing (and adoring) the assymetrical experience of Star Wars Rebellion, with it's overwhelming imperial military might against the sneaky guerrilla rebels, to have a perfectly balanced system now seems rather bland. For the bread and butter cards I could understand it but come on, at least make the characters and the strategies different! The strategies utilised by the Empire should not match the strategies utilised by the Rebels. They should have different strengths and weaknesses, which yes would make the game more complicated, but at least it would have some flavour. There is no point in there being Star Wars images on this... you could have Mr Men on it for all the in game effect it has! Which means the Star Wars is on there purely to add sales, and that I do not like. Machi Koro is a game of building a town, sounds boring but it plays well and is fun. Ticket to Ride is a game of trains, do we need them to be Imperial trains criss-crossing Coruscant? No, it's a good game, it still works and sells. This is a fun little card game that is a handy thing for the bottom of the bag how to kill half an hour at the end of a night or perhaps a "crap we're the first two here what can we do whilst we wait for the other gamers to arrive" sort of game. But I'd honestly rather they sold this with generic real world equivalents than try to pass this off as being even remotely connected to Star Wars.

Overall: Fun, simple, but absolutely nothing to do with Star Wars.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Project Dangerzone: More progress on the Karrier

I think this bad boy is now structurally complete... this is a dry fit, need to take it and paint it, then glue the superstructure and jet in place, along with various crew members and a few deffkoptas, but overall am pleased with my handiwork :)

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Friday Night Excitement

To be fair, I didn't get home from work till 11pm, so not like I'm missing much opportunity to socialise in favour of geekiness (got work tomorrow too) but managed to get a couple more hours put into the superstructure for my "karrier"

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Flash Gitz, Flash.

So I finished the first five flashgitz yesterday, of a planned 20 and kaptin I have to do before the beginning of June... these models took me a lot longer than I had expected, despite my usual quick rush "it'll do" arms length painting attitude. I'd best crack on with this lot, as while I should still have time to get them all done, at this rate I won't have time to finish the display board, which is half of what I'm looking forward to about this entire project anyway!

Now normally I photo my models in a light box but let the camera do the work, but as it has been said of late that the models are looking a bit dark (my current setup worked fine through my Bad Moons tribe, but suffice to say they were a little brighter than my typical orks) so this time I tried a few shots with the flash in the ready position.

I know the camera will bring the flash up automatically if it needs it, but I thought that may encourage things. Didn't seem to, but I'm guessing it's the white background, as when I zoomed in close I finally got it to take a few with the flash. I should probably learnt he camera better and find out how to make it use flash at my directive rather than it's own, but here's a few shots.

I'm not 100% convinced by this yet as it feels like a microscopic examination of a paintjob I have never expected to be looked at closer than arms length, the standard "If it looks good from the end of a GW measuring stick, it's good enough for me" approach I have used for my entire hobby career. For much the same reason I don't play skirmish sized games, I am a horde collector... I like grand spectacle. Details, kinda meh... One beautifully painted Leman Russ is nice, don't get me wrong, but show me a division of 16 painted to a tabletop standard and I'm far more intrigued.

Anyway, we'll see how it goes. I have another 15 that I will paint to this standard, I might take a little more care for the kaptin, but don't expect golden daemon 5 different shades of one colour painting (you know who you are) but I'll be honest I want to get them all done quickly so the pressure is off for the stuff I NEED for the tournament, and I can turn my attention to the conversions I WANT on the display board...