Sunday, January 6, 2019

Mini-Review: Osprey's Last Days

My particular hard copy arrived after the USPS claimed it was probably lost en route... About a week and a half late, but hey! There wasn't any rush and I got it for maybe 15 bucks or something, so no harm done. A good looking book with great art, nice photos of well-painted minis (mostly Hasslefree, I think?). Simple, although maybe too many stats, is my first thought.

It's fun, and well made, some other people have done it better and more thoroughly. I like that there is some within-team tension, and I like that you don't have to use weird dice (this is my least favorite thing about the Walking Dead game, all the dumb weird dice)

Coulda used some more rules on varieties of zoms, maybe (note: easy enough to hack, on my own) and the effects that non-meshing builds have. For example, there is a rule that your leader  can "Have the Talk" with a member of the crew who doesn't share the same psychological tag as him or her. Well, that's great if you want to keep hiring on gangbangers or something if your leader is a Nice Guy. But! There's really no bad effects from having a team member on board who doesn't fit within the preliminary team-building guidelines. Say you pick up a couple of real bad hombres in the course of play, either through capture or rescue, or whatever... I get the impression this is an eventuality that might occur. Until you "Have The Talk" with them, some morale deficiencies owing to disharmony seems pretty reasonable, until at last they defect and hit the road, or else come around. So: team members who don't share tags with the leader don't follow orders, or maybe loot counters they get don't have full value, or something. It seems like this must have been included in there at one point. A great number of things occurred to me whilst reading that were like O THATS COOL, THEY MUST ADDRESS THAT LATER, but then i got to the end of the thing and that was it.

I guess I like the book as a physical object. The margins seem sort of wide... Like a Freshman English essay? Like, hey man, use a slightly larger font, make the margins smaller, the book slightly shorter, whatever. I felt like even the low price I paid via the sale was sort of paying for a great deal of empty layout. Too much white space in my game books makes me nervous. Frostgrave has that feeling, also, and it's my goto favorite wargame for a good long while, but Frostgrave is nice and tidy and a complete package.

Good Things: it hints that there is a really good game in there, somewhere. And it seems like it was probably much grander in scope than what we are given. The 'DLC model' of releases is fine, I guess. The impression I had is that some of the more fun stuff that was in there must have been advised or edited out. Like "THIS IS TOO COMPLICATED MAN CHOP IT OUT" and then they had to bump the margins larger to account for missing space.

As a comparison, Mantic's The Walking Dead : All Out War has made me feel tense and nervous and (dumb weird dice aside) there is a real feeling of dread that comes through in playing the game. I start that game up and I wish my little people were some other place instead of on that 2x2 or 3x3 board. A very interesting thing is that TWD:AOW presents a 'solo version' of the game within the first few pages of the quick start. I wish that a lot of other pubs put out a product that didn't always make the assumption that you and a couple of friends could get together to play it. TWD:AOW seems to me more limited in scope, justified in its DLC model (Days Gone Bye is kind of a game-changer in terms of dropping custom figure rules), and chock full of zombie-apocalypse horror. On the flipside, I don't like to manage a bunch of cards and tokens and bits and bobs. One bad thing about Last Days is that every action accumulates counters (I guess you can put them on the fig's card instead of on the board) to keep track of ammo use and other conditions.

All in all, a good dame, needs a little polish and some at-the-table hacking but it's nice and neat and great in that it doesn't need a proprietary fig set. You just dig out what you have and use it.

Friday, May 18, 2018

The Children of Gmork for RT/Inq28

I was looking at these Chaos Marines and Space Wolves bits, thinking about why I keep them, and I couldn't think of a good reason at that moment, and then the Internet showed me a very brief advertisement for a new GW skirmish game named Rogue Trader, I guess, but not the same one from 1986.

And I was going to use the SW bits for my Amber College Dungeonbowl kitbashery, just because, but it got me motivated some to sculpt some tabards and robes to put underneath all these leftover CSM  bits, and to use to make a Necromunda Chaos Cult with.

I think I will stat them up in RT1e and maybe convert to Necromunda 17 for a kick.

Interestingly, there is a work-up of Inq28 for Necromunda 2017, already! Which you can find on Yaktribe if you go looking!

Mostly, my ideas for the thing are based around:

Gmork, from the Neverending story. The big wolf that hunts Atreyu (Noah Hathaway, yo!). Servant of The Nothing, sent by The Manipulators to turn the people of Fantasia/Fantastica into Lies in the Real World. Starring: the GW Warg leader, or maybe just a Fenrisian wolf, a one of these barghests I have laying around.

This page of Tzeentch Chaos Renegades from the RT1 era. which I have seen painted all kinds of cool ways, and which I lusted after as a kid - let's face it, those RT Chaos SM were infintely weirder and cooler and more Xaos than the recent ones, which are still pretty cool.

This illustration of what must be CSM but which I took to be a very very weird regular space marines picture, because in my pre-teen mind I made no clear distinction between the good guys and bad guys and maybe even RT didn't make a good distinction, either?

And to use up all these Space Wolves bits and turn them to Evil Ends. I really sort of want to sculpt and cast a squad's worth of filthy, tattered tabards and weird biomechanical neck veins and horned skull helmets and weird insectile-robot arms.

anyways, a cult of Chaos Undivided/Malloc that is bent on dissolution and annhilitaion of everything, not just some dumb aggression.  Fill in the gaps with robots, adeptae mechanicae scumbags, and converted IG and gang-types

We'll see! Fingers crossed.  The Emperor is a Corpse! The Nothing is Coming!

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

My Toil Is Endless

It is in the dead of winter that morale flags and our spirits weaken.

This is my List of Shame, that being the mini wargaming projects I have undertaken within the past few years and not finished.

Previous to my discovery of the ease of eBay, this list was laughably short. I generally bought or acquired figs and worked on them at a comfortable pace, with a few squads or prize figs always awaiting completion.

I realized the other day that I am "stress purchasing" figs off of eBay. I dare say that I enjoy NOT winning auctions that I bid on almost as much as I enjoy winning them, and I usually try to keep single figs under 10 bucks U.S. and squads under 20$. That's a modest goal, and easy target to hit, so I am gradually taking on more models than I may ever finish in my brief life span!

Things to finish:

  1. I have a handful of marines that need power-sword fixing with my airbrush.
  2. There was this box of 20 3rd or 4th edition Catachans. Hideous. Assembled now for like 6 years, awaiting paint. Convert to Beastmen or maybe Orlocks.
  3. Original St. Celestine. Arm broken: needs pinning and painting.
  4. Repaint my 8 man Arbites squad(note, I made a mold of the easiest one and have been slowly venting/tweaking so I may one day have like a anti-riot squad but that's a different thing). Thinking Judge Dredd scheme, since it's neat.
  5. Repaint my 5 Seraphim(note: I stripped these down because my paint job was pretty awful and I wanted to make a mold of the twin-bolters sister, but we'll see if that ever happens)
  6. Finish Wayne's Inquisitorial Land Raider. been assembled and waiting for months and months, now.
  7. Finish the Genestealer Cult. Needs highlights and bases.
  8. The Cult Brood Lord conversion from a WFB ogre is stalled. Need green stuff. I have milliput but not sure if I like it.
  9. Finish the Space Hulk 'stealers and termies
  10. Finish the Sisters' Immolator
  11. Finish the Gangs of Commoragh
  12. Finish Necromunda - just need to assemble the Escher and paint everything
  13. Have some Fenryll skellies i just grabbed. Want to use them for solo Frostgrave stuff so they ought to be 0
  14. Paint the Crypt Ghouls for Frostgrave. Ought to be .5
  15. Convert a new level 5 wizard for my Frostgrave warband (Chaos-y, with tubes and wires n such. Ought to be .75)
  16. A metal Brood Guard or hive guard, in the pile somewheres.
  17. Some HDF terrain: a 3x3 medieval urban board with canals/sewers.
  18. Survivors for Walking Dead: All Out War
  19. Gaslands cars (8 or 9). Magnetize with some bits from 40k
  20. Gaslands terrain
  21. Convert a team of Dark Elfs for Blood Bowl from these 3rd edition Dark Eldar kabalites. Maybe.
  22. Dungeonbowl board. I have the chests primed and ready but they await.
  23. A squad of Tommy Gun wielding mob goons that ought to be good for survivors for WD:AOW, and a couple of other bits and bobs survivors.
  24. A jillion little jobs to finish.  I have this one WW2 era Phantom bomber that I squished a couple of IG pilots into, and it needs glue-ing and basing and a crummy rules set.

These are just the ones I can recall, in no order of import. I don't know that I'll be actually playing 40K any time soon, despite hearing great things about 8th edition... As you can probably tell, just going into my frozen hell of a basement makes me exquisitely anxious with idea debt. Interestingly, while NOT doing these things on the list, I have completed a table-ready job of a Frostgrave band and even some objective markers. Proud as I am of those, my head grows heavy and my heart shrinks at the thought of these undertakings. I need to print it out and staple it onto the wall next to my bed to give me a little motivation.