Friday, July 31, 2015

Ashes to Ashes....

Ok, since I'm officially on the editorial bandwagon, I've got a doozy this week. Let's talk about this Dust debacle.

If you haven't heard about this debacle, you could quickly get up to speed reading through a few search results (remember to be critical of both Battlefront and Dust Studios sources).

Operation Babylon Kickstarter Campaign ...

However, you don't need to know anything about the past troubles to understand my sudden and total rage. All you need to know is that there was a kickstarter campaign launched jointly be Dust Studios and Battlefront called Operation Babylon. It succeeded. Shortly thereafter the wheels came off following a disagreement between DS and BF over the funds. It got ugly. It still is. The backers waited for their promised goods. They still do.

But this is not about that story.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Closing Time ...

This Age of Sigmar thing is really, really interesting to follow. I can't think of another time where a AAA game system has plunged itself into it's own End Times and then reinvented itself (for better or worse). Like it or hate it, you have to recognize this as major event in our collective wargaming hobby.

Now, I'm the least qualified person to actually speak with any authority on the world of Warhammer. I know exactly jack shit about the history and fluff, other than enough to name the various factions. I had a Vampire Counts army back in '03, but gave it up shortly thereafter for a more rewarding experience playing Confrontation 3.0 and it's brilliant Dogs of War narrative/semi-RPG campaign system (to this day, I believe it remains the best in the genre).

But something about the boldness of this shift was intriguing. When the internets exploded with rage and love (but mostly rage) over the new Age of Sigmar release, there were a few sore points with veteran players, chief among them that this new set of rules replaces Warhammer 8th Edition (something I still don't think is exactly true). There were also some 'interesting' rules like one about dancing while rolling a die to get re-rolls on misses or some such madness. Basically, the noise I was getting (and there was s shit ton of noise) was basically that this new game was too simple, it's stupid, and how could they replace the time-honored WHFB with this tripe?

Well, not all the noise is negative. There's a ground swell of support for the system among the 40k crowd. Interestingly AoS after-action reports looks more like a 40k game than an old-school WHFB game with loose formations as opposed to rank-and-file. The rules have been streamlined into something vaguely more familiar to a 40k player (and dare I say, a FoW player such as myself). So it's a big change for traditional Warhammer players to swallow.

Or is it?

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

How to Hate a Game, Properly

"Hate" is a strong word. It's got a lot of polarizing connotations associated with it, but the truth is that you are (sometimes) allowed to just not like something so much that no other word would suffice, like with raisins and grocer's apostrophes. But I don't believe for a second that there's ever a legitimate reason to use that word in the context of wargaming due to the nature of being a totally voluntary activity. If you're driven to hate, then you should probably stop wargaming.

This week in the wargaming world, there's certainly been a lot of "hate" being thrown around due to the release of the Age of Sigmar (AoS) ruleset for Warhammer (Fantasy) from Games Workshop. Now, if you're looking for my opinion on this ruleset, you're going to be sorely disappointed no matter what AoS camp you're in because I don't have one. So where is this going? Well I thought this as good a time as any to actually talk about why it's OK to not like a game and how I go about trying to be respectful when expressing it to others.

Monday, April 27, 2015

April Shenanigans

Theo wanted a poppy to "Remember the soldiers"
on this special centennial ANZAC Day.
April is nearly over and I've been remiss about posting things to the blog. This is mostly due to the fact that I'm still sorting out a new hobby schedule around the new job and a slightly more active 3yr old...

At any rate, I thought I didn't have much to report, but when I flicked through my phone's pictures for hobby-related stuff, I was surprised there was actually quite a lot. Over the past few weeks I've had some FoW games, several Saga matches, tried out Netrunner, bought a new Warmachine army, expanded my X-Wing collection, and even got a neato Lego set for my birthday.

Also, before we get started, I just wanted to mark the passing of the 100-year anniversary of the landings at Gallipoli on 25 April 1915. Here in New Zealand and Australia we hold annual memorial services on that day commemorating ANZAC Day. Like Veteran's and Memorial Days in the US, it's meant to be a time to acknowledge the sacrifices of those who have gone before us. It has been very moving to see NZ remember, and I am honored to have witnessed it.

Lest we forget.  

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

So Long, and THANKS!

Well, this post has been a long time in coming, possibly because I didn't know what or how to say it, but here it goes! About four weeks ago I resigned my position as a writer at Battlefront to join an emerging computer game design studio here in Auckland. It's been a big move in my life and now that I have officially started at my new work. it's all sinking in and I'm ready to unpack this a bit more for those interested to read on.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

A Busy Weekend!

The weekend past was a busy one in terms of hobby fun. Between BattleCry, the Howick Military Tattoo, and a TCOW meeting, there were a lot of reenacters firing weapons either by using dice or black powder.

BattleCry 2015
The big hobby event of the weekend was BattleCry. The event has a lot of interesting games being played and this year it was in a new, smaller venue. This pushed all of the games together into a smaller space, which was difficult on the players, but made it easier for photo taking!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Liri Valley Counterattack: An AAR

After too long a break, Patrick and I threw down a game last weekend. Pat was keen to give a tournament list a try and I wanted to get my German medium tanks on the table.

I also wanted to have the excuse to put some new terrain on the table. I've been spending some time working on my terrain collection, fixing it up, etc. I've also made up a couple of more forest bases and based up some pine trees I had lying about. Finally, I wanted to make sure that my new railroad pieces made it on the table, including my new curves and switches pack and the switching tower. I love these little sets adn would highly recommend them if you haven't got them already!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Carried to Victory: DanCon II

Well, dice were rolled, tanks destroyed, infantry pinned down, and aircraft shot down at TCOW today as 22 players descended on the club house for DanCon II: Electric Boogaloo.

As I mentioned in the previous post the format was a bit unusual. 700 points, Late War, Doubles (pairs randomly picked each round). So we had different partners for each of the four rounds.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Jagged Panthers!

It's almost Auckland Anniversary Day, and that can only mean one thing...
Electric Boogaloo!

Last year DanCON was a standard tournament and I took some US Paras. Hosted at TCOW, the environment was super laid back with lots of fun had by all.

This year Dan's gone and had some fun with the format:

700 points
Late War
Doubles (pairs randomly picked each round)

This means that you will be playing with a different partner each round. What's more there's a distinct possibility that you might end up Allied and Axis forces fighting together! I'm all sorts of excited about this as now and again, you just need something different and this certainly fits the bill!

The question was, what to take? Jagged Panthers, duh.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2014: A Year In Review

Well, it's that time of the year again. Time to look back and reflect on highlights of the year, then realize the hopelessness of New Years Resolutions, and finally make hollow promises for the following year.

Well, what can I say about 2014? Well it was a quiet one on the blog, with my lowest post count for a full year. Why's that? Well, a combination of a much more active toddler, the reintroduction of a good computer in the household (finally able to finish Fallout New Vegas!), X-Wing, and some other life-things have come together to form a pretty epic hobby slump. So, without much being built on the hobby bench, there's not a lot for me to report here. I have, however, been building a lot of terrain, but more on that in the New Year!

So what did I get done this year? Let's have a look...

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Introducing: DEROS!

It's been a bit quiet on the hobby front as I've been feverishly organizing myself some Vietnam terrain. I've been building jungle, rivers, tree lines, palm trees, hooches, rice paddies and more. There is also the small issue of a brand-spanking new Local Forces Battalion sitting on my hobby bench...

I've got a few articles lined up covering those adventures, but I did end up wondering: what the hell am I going to do with all of this stuff? Answer: 'Nam event!

Introducing DEROS: 2015. This is something I've been working on for a few years now, but something has always gotten in the way, be it life, a toddler, or another hobby project. But this year I'm going to actually make good on my intentions and get this thing off the ground.