Category: Blog Page 16 of 18

Challenge of the Word

My good friend Graham, is organising a 30k event in North Tyneside on the 22nd January, and I have decided to challenge myself to have the Word Bearers read for it.

It’s 3500 points and this is the list I am building.:-

+ HQ +

········Legion Centurion [Artificer Armour, Burning Lore, Jump Pack, Melta Bombs, Plasma Pistol, Refractor Field]

············Consul [Chaplain]

········Legion Praetor [Cataphractii Terminator Armour with Combi-bolter and Power Weapon, Combi-Weapon, Digital Lasers, Iron Halo, Master of the Legion, Thunderhammer]

········Lorgar [Lorgar Transfigured, Master of the Legion, Primarch]
+ Elites +
········Contemptor-Cortus Class Dreadnought Talon
············Cortus Dreadnought [Twin-linked Volkite Culverin, Twin-linked Volkite Culverin]

············Cortus Dreadnought [Kheres Pattern Assault Cannon]

········Contemptor-Mortis Dreadnought [Havoc Launcher, Two Kheres Pattern Assault Cannons]

········Gal Vorbak Dark Brethren [4x Dark Brethren]

············Dark Martyr [Artificer Armour, Melta Bombs, Power Fist]

+ Troops +

········Legion Tactical Support Squad [Legion Rhino Armoured Carrier, Legion Sergeant, 9x Legion Space Marines, Plasma Guns, Support Squad]

········Legion Terminator Squad [Cataphractii Terminator Armour with Combi-bolter and Power Weapon, Chainfist, Legion Terminator Squad, 4x Legion Terminators, 3x Power Fist, Reaper Autocannon]

············Legion Spartan Assault Tank [Armoured Ceramite, Dozer Blade, Flare Shield, Frag Assault Launchers]

············Legion Terminator Sergeant [Grenade Harness]

········Legion Veteran Tactical Squad [9x Legion Veteran Space Marines, Legion Veteran Tactical Squad, Veteran Tactics: Marksmen]

············Additional Wargear [2x Heavy Bolter and Suspensor Web, Legion Vexilla, Melta Bombs]

············Legion Rhino Armoured Carrier [Dozer Blade]

············Legion Veteran Sergeant [Artificer Armour, Bolt Pistol, Bolter, Lightning Claw]

············Standard Wargear [Bolt Pistols, Bolters, Chainswords/Combat Blades, Frag and Krak Grenades, Power Armour]

········Legion Veteran Tactical Squad [9x Legion Veteran Space Marines, Legion Veteran Tactical Squad, Veteran Tactics: Machine Killers]

············Additional Wargear [Legion Vexilla, Melta Bombs, 2x Missile Launcher and Suspensor Web]

············Legion Rhino Armoured Carrier [Dozer Blade]

············Legion Veteran Sergeant [Artificer Armour, Bolt Pistol, Bolter, Power Fist]

············Standard Wargear [Bolt Pistols, Bolters, Chainswords/Combat Blades, Frag and Krak Grenades, Power Armour]

+ Fast Attack +

········The Ashen Circle [Iconoclast, 4x Incendiary]

+ Heavy Support +

········Legion Heavy Support Squad [Hardened Armour, Legion Heavy Support Squad, Legion Sergeant, 4x Legion Space Marines, Missile Launchers]

+ Legion +

········Legiones Astartes [ XVII: Word Bearers, Traitor]

········Rite of War [Primarch’s Chosen]

At the moment I have built and painted the Veteran Tactical Squad with the Missile Launchers and their Rhino along with the Chaplain, so I have a long way to go in a little over a month. On the table at the minute the Heavy Support Squad are all done bar their bases and I have just finished building the Terminator Squad and Praetor.

I will try and keep you guys updated with the progress of the project, and hopefully they will be ready in time to lose some games!

First Game of Dropfleet

On Tuesday, Hawks lovely Talon, Ken travelled all the way up from Hartlepool to show me and Madison the ropes of Dropfleet Commander.

We played the starter scenario straight from the two player box set with those fleets, the UCM and the Scourge. My UCM fleet consisted of three battlegroups one with two Toulons and a Berlin, one with two New Orleans and a Moscow and the last one with just a Seattle. Madisons Scourge fleet also had thee battlegroups, one with two Harpys and an Ifrit, one with two Gargoyles and a Shenlong, and a final one with a Wyvern.

My strategy was to try and take out his cruisers with mine from a distance allowing my strike cruisers to take the ground clusters, well they say a battle plan rarely survives first contact with the enemy and in this case that was 100% accurate.

On the left hand side, I sent in my Berlin and two Toulons to try and stop his Shenlong and Gargoyles, but Madison ran his Shenlong under silent running the whole way, so by the time I had closed in on the centre of the board, I was just out of scan range, which allowed him to open fire on me and send my Berlin hurtling into oblivion, before picking off my Toulons as they pursued his escaping Gargoyles.

On the other side of the table I threw both my other two battlegroups to try and take the clusters on the far right, but Madison threw in both of his two remaining battlegroups. I easily picked off his Harpys, but the devastating close combat attacks of his Wyvern crippled both my Seattle and Moscow, before his Ifrit dealt the final blow to my Moscow which set off a series of explosions which took out my Seattle and his Wyvern.

My New Orleans were able to take the far right clusters and then turned to the centre cluster where Madison was also sending his ships after taking the far left clusters. The game ended with us destroying each other’s ground forces in the centre leaving us in control of one set of clusters each, so the game was decided on kill points, and sadly my ships went down easily and fast to his

The UCM were fun to play, but the key with them against the Scourge is to keep distance, the Scourge are fast and are very lethal up close, despite their lacking in long ranges attacks.

Overall I am really pleased with the game, and I am looking forward to getting some more in. It’s very much like submarine warfare in space with much of the tactics of the game dictated towards keeping your ships from developing spikes and marking them easier to kill.

Like Dropzone Commander it’s a game about combined arms and you can’t simply min/max your lists, they really do have to be balanced in order to win.

Update for the Last Few Weeks

It’s been a whiles since I last posted, in that time I have been to Warhammer World, been to a wedding and done very little else really, oh but we did put up the Christmas tree, a bit early, personally I prefer to wait until after my mums birthday partway through the month.

So here is a general update on what I am up to.

What I am Modelling

Gotten through a bit of the to do pile the past few weeks so let’s look at them project by project.

– Ultramarines 

Got painted up three squads, a squad of Cataphractii Terminators with Lightning Claws, a squad of 10 Legion Breachers including a Vexilia, Nuncio Vox and two Graviton Guns, and finally a Legion Heavy Support Squad all armed with Ryza Pattern Lascannons. I am a really big fan of these Lascannons, the MKIII arms needed a little shaving before they fit, but they look really good and look like a nice step from the shoulder mounted Lascannons of the Great Crusade to the 40k Lascannon.

– Word Bearers

I painted up the rest of the Legion Veteran Tactical Squad for the Word Bearers and their Rhino. The two special weapons guys from the squad were armed with Proteus-II Missile Launchers. Now originally when Forgeworld first revealed these I thought they looked a tad daft, I just didn’t think they looked right and swore I would never use them.

That was up until I decided to do a MKIII Veteran Tactical Squad with Missile Launchers, and well the MKIII pack doesn’t come with its own Missile Launchers like the MKIV kit. In my mind I headcannon this as the ordinary MKIII armour isn’t suitable to carry shoulder mounted heavy weapons. Now I could have gotten a pack of MKIII Heavy Support Marines and a pack of Missile Launchers, but that would have been rather expensive, and a bit wasteful. So I went to eBay and bought two of the Proteus-IIs and when I actually have them in my hands, they aren’t too bad. They remind me of the Space Crusade Missile Launchers, and when given to a Veteran Squad, it seems like yeah, this could be the variant of the Missile Launcher that a Suspensor Web is easily fitted to.

The Rhino had been long in the making, when Dark Vengeance came out, I was all for doing Word Bearer Chaos Space Marines, and I bought three sets of Word Bearer Rhino upgrade kits from Forgeworld , anyway, bar two squads and a Dark Apostle, my Word Bearers then never amounted to much because life got in the way. But I am glad I ordered the doors as Forgeworld no longer make them, and I think for my Calth themed Word Bearers they look so much more appropriate than the Legion upgrades do.

– Dropfleet Commander

Now I have my Commodore Pledge for Dropfleet Commander I have been slowly building up some of the starter fleets for it. I have built and painted three out of the four starter fleets, those for the UCM, PHR and Scourge. I am actually going to be playing my first game of this at club this week, where Ken, our regional Hawk Talon will be showing me and Madison the ropes.

I am currently thinking that UCM and PHR will become my main fleets, I just found them so much nicer to paint, but even then, my paint jobs were really basic and terrible.

What I am Reading

For some reason I couldn’t actually get myself to pick up my Kobo for a few weeks, but a few nights ago I did so and finally at long last finished the Ahirman series, and I have to say I found it a little anticlimactic. Which is a shame as I enjoyed the rest of the series, but that said the ending was actually rather hopeful and uplifting in a universe of Grim Darkness.

It just feels like there is more story to tell, in a way because this was more of an ensemble book and you spent a lot mor time amongst the supporting cast than you did with Ahriman himself, and that’s no bad thing, I enjoy Ignis and Cetsias, they are very interesting characters, especially Ignis who is very unusual for a Thousand Son, and to me seems to be more like a member of the Iron Xth than the XVth. I do hope we get to hear more about Asteroes though, I hope his story is not at an end.

I have however had better progress with audio books and have smashed through Scars, Know No Fear, and Mark of Calth plus various shorts set around these books, this evening I just started on Garro – Oath of Moment, which features the awesome Garro and Rubio and I am enjoying that so far.

What I am Playing

Not much as seems to be the usual these days, every time I arrange a game at Club it falls through, which is kinda getting me down, but I am looking forward to playing Dropfleet this week.

I have started a game of Dark Heresy 2nd Edition of Heaton Games Society, I have had l the books for some time and have been meaning to start up a game for a long while.

We have just done character creation, and will be meeting every two weeks, my character is a Seeker from a Garden World who previously served in a Rouge Trader Fleet. I don’t know what the GM has in store for us, but we have been told that initially we are being sent in by the Inquisitor to investigate irregularities with the worlds Imperial Tithe and taxation records.

What I am Backing

Nothing, I was backing Ogre Minitures and Ominoes, but alas money is tight and I have had to abandon this pledges.

The Teenage Mutant Nina Turtle board game is apparently going to be shipping to me in the next couple of weeks, I backed that back in February, it was meant to be delivered in the summer, but there was a perfectly reasonable delay, the only negative is that the Yanks have had the game for over a month at this point, and I am a bit annoyed they couldn’t have gotten the boat for the States and the EU on the water at the same time.

What I am Spending

Mostly just buying Christmas presents, but I did but Blood Bowl, Death Zone Season One, the Skavenblight Scramblers and the Skaven Dice. I also ordered a UCM Battleship to add to my fleet.

Although I had to think long and hard about that purchase. After sharing a photo of my unopened projects (there are a few), I got a bit of a backlash from friends, many of whom were annoyed that I appear to spend more on the hobby than them.

I, as many of you will know, don’t work, due to disabilities I am paid the benefits ESA and PIP to support me while I am physically unable to work, and it was said that I shouldn’t be able to afford these things whilst on those benefits.

Well I don’t really drink, I don’t gamble, I don’t smoke or do drugs, I live in a three adult household with rent that is quite cheap, even for the north east, and I have no debt payments bar the mortgage on the flat me and Lindsay own in Newcastle. I have no children to support, just four cats and a rabbit, and on occasion I get paid to demonstrate board games and stores and conventions. My wife also earns a decent wage for the region and takes on the lions share of bills for us. I have a disabled persons bus pass so I don’t pay bus fare to get anywhere.

So yes I do have a reasonable amount of disposable income each month, and I spend that mostly on things for my hobby or books, and I am told I should feel guilty for that. 

I don’t feel guilty, why should I, just because I am disabled doesn’t mean I should live a life like a monk. I don’t get a huge amount of money a year, just £9,807.20. Okay so I also get a car which if I took the cash instead would be another £2,987.40 a year, so as you can see I don’t get the full time equivalent of someone working full time on the National Living Wage would get, and that’s quite right, why should I get what someone who works gets.

But I am good with my money, I manage to make the £65 a month I spend on my hobby stretch quite far, sometime I add some money from my weekly budget and not go out that week, but generally that’s all I spend. 

I get that’s more than some others, but then again it’s less than others, but just because some of my friends who work feel like I get to spend more on the hobby than they, should not affect me. It’s gets to me emotionally when I am told that I should not be so shameless about claiming disability benefits and buying what are luxuries, it’s like I am being told that I don’t deserve the money I am given. 

I have been told before that the disabled should only be given food vouchers and bare minimum to pay utilities before, because we are scroungers, and that hurts. I worked all my life, ever since I was 13 and got my first paper round, and bar 7 weeks of unemployment I worked continually right up until I got ill, I paid my taxes and national insurance. So why should I not be able to claim now when I need it? And why should I be punished and penalised because I can’t work?

I got kind of lost with this rant, but this is the kind of thing those of us who are disabled have to put up with all the time, we are judged and abused constantly because of general assumption by some people, encouraged by the shit-stirring ultra right wing gutter press, that disabled people like me sit around all day drinking, watching Jeremy Kyle and raking in the money for it.

For the record, Jeremy Kyle is rubbish.

Open Day Report and Project Tingler

Last Saturday me and Lindsay headed off to Nottingham for the Warhammer 40,000 Open Day, and it was an awesome day.

We arrived a little late so we missed the lines to get in, we also missed being able to park in the car park. But once we arrived we were able to get our passes and move straight into the building very smoothly. Lindsay wasn’t quite amazed it was her third visit in less than a year, but I am still awed every time I go.

Anyway, it was first time since they removed the Special Exhibition area and expanded the Warhammer store into that, moved the Black Library store and expanded the Forgeworld store, the changes were nice to see and it has given a lot more area to display product and give a better shopping experience.

I was able to take Lindsay into the Exhibition Centre for the first time and she was pretty blown away. She found herself once again tempted to look into taking up Age of Sigmar as the models of the Ironjawz and Sylvaneth tempted her, especially Alarielle the Everqueen.

The exhibitions themselves had changed quite a bit from my last visit a year ago which was nice to see, I was especially impressed by the Ironwarp Citadel.

In the main hall they had the Kill Team tournament going on, I would have entered but that would have been unfair on Lindsay as it would have meant me leaving her alone for such a long time, so the Millitarium Tempestus did not get to storm up in their Taurox sadly. They also had the special sales area, but by the time we got there, they had sold out of Custodes Grav Tanks, not that I was interested in one!

In Bugmans it was heaving and at lunchtime, me and Lindsay were very lucky to get a table. Whilst I was in the line to order food the chap in front of me didn’t have a table and couldn’t order food without one, so I let him join us. Turned out to be a lovely young man named Michael who was a student at Sheffield. Now shock horror the menu at Bugmans has changed, they have massively reduced the options to mostly burgers and pizzas which is a shame, no more Fat Bloke which is just sad. 

That said I did enjoy the Bugmans Burger and Lindsay enjoyed her Custodes Special Burger.

In the studio area (the GW staff canteen) they had some really cool stuff on display, including the painted up mini of the Magnus daemon primarch model, and an unpainted version, and I gotta say it’s a really really nice model. Might have to get one just to build and paint. The sprues for it were also on display, showing that it has the option of another weapon and three different heads.

There was also a diorama in progress of the burning of Prospero which looks simply amazing, it has some great stuff on there including Feki and Geri, Russ’s wolf companions and their models are brilliant. They also had on display the new shield and gladius upgrade packs for the Ultramarines which I am desperately waiting for, a Custodes Grav Speeder, a Custodes Contemptor and the phenomenally large Imperial Knight Porphyrion.

I also got to have abbot of a chat with Alan Bligh about the rules for the Thousand Sons and Space Wolves that are coming up in Book 7, he didn’t give away a lot, but what he did gives me a lot of hope that these two legions will get the treatment they deserve.

It was a thoroughly wonderful day, wish I had won the £500 trolley dash in the raffle but alas I did not, but I loved my day and am seriously considering going to the New Year Open Day as well.

What I am Modelling

Quite a bit actually, I finished off the three Stormcast Eternal Liberators from Storm of Sigmar, I painted up a scout squad from Lost Patrol, I completed my Word Bearers Chaplain with a jump pack and got the Scourge starter fleet for Dropfleet Commander painted up.

So that took quite a bit off my to do list, I also based the Word Bearers Contemptor Dreadnought that I painted up a while ago.

I have built a squad of MKIII veterans for the Word Bearers and painted up the Sht for that squad as a test model for the line troops who will be mostly drybrushed and I am quite happy with that. And tonight I got some MKIII breachers out of the WIP box and am looking to get them finished ASAP.

What I am Reading

A lot of news and analysis, it’s almost like something important has been going on in the world!

I literally just put down issues 0 and 1 of Warhammer 40,000 Will of Iron a comic written by my friend George Mann, and I have really enjoyed that. It always nice to see the Dark Angels and the Inquisitor seems like an interesting character.

What I am Playing

Not a sausage sadly, I have only really been able to play on the iPad, and I have mostly confined myself to Ticket to Ride using the Nordic map, a map I really love and enjoy, and well it’s wintery and it matches the weather.

What I am Backing

Something a little unconventional, I am backing Project Tingler a FMV game by Zöe Quinn (I don’t care what you think of her politics, I actually rather liked Depression Quest and think the campaign of harassment against her was childish and ridiculous) and Chuck Tingle.

Now Chuck Tingle is an amazing man, he is a high functioning autistic savant who suffers from schizophrenia, and he writes the most absurd gay erotica. Now generally speaking gay erotica is not my thing, but there is a certain something about a Tingler that just makes me laugh.

He first came to my attention in an Observer interview in 2015, but he was really propelled into my thoughts when he was nominated for a Hugo Award for “Space Raptor Butt Invasion”. His nomination was a result of a joke inclusion on the slate of the awful alt-right groups who have spent the past few years trying to hijack the Hugo’s, known as the Sad Puppies and Rabid Puppies. Now I absolutely deplore these groups, they make a business of telling us Sci-Fi fans that all we want is shoot-em-up action adventures with male white protagonists, and absolutely zero diversity or social commentary.

Now I admit I like my bolter porn, but I also love a nice hard hitting bit of Sci-Fi that challenges things in society or makes me think about social change, I mean most of us Sci-Fi fans love Star Trek and that’s as political and progressive as it comes!

Anyway the slate that the puppies put forward is filled with straight white guys and prank candidates, the aim to eliminate nominations for minorities, women and anyone not straight and where they can’t fill a category to see that they aren’t awarded in a good way at all.

And sadly the puppies do succeed in getting their skates largely nominated, including some nominations for their leader, the vile and repulsive Vox Day. Some of the candidates they nominated withdrew to allow other more worthy candidates to fill their spot, but not Chuck Tingle, he said screw you and trolled back in the greatest way possible.

Now Chucks books are simply astounding and they range from “Glazed by the Gay Living Doughnuts” to “Bigfoot Pirates Haunt my Balls” and my favourite “Pounded by the Pound: Turned Gay by the Socioeconomic Implications of Britain Leaving the European Union”!!!

Anyway Chuck registered the website and put out the following statement:- 

“Hello my name is Chuck Tingle (worlds greatest author). Sometimes devilmen are so busy planning scoundrel attacks they forget to REGISTER important website names. this is… good because it makes it easy for BUDS WHO KNOW LOVE IS REAL to prove love (all). please understand this is website [sic] to take DARK MAGIC and replace with REAL LOVE for all who kiss the sky.”

The site collected donations for the Crash Override Network, an organisation that works with victims of online trolls like the Puppies, and also included an awesome plug for Chucks local library.

Anyway in the long run, Chuck did not win his Hugo, but there is a small and growing campaign to get him nominated for best related work for his masterpiece “Pounded in the Butt by my Hugo Award Loss”, but he handled the situation so well, he was able to stand up to the nasty alt-right bullies and beat them at their own game. And since then, you could say I have become a True Buckaroo!

I know that Project Tingler will not be in everyone’s taste, but I think it’s worth a look, and given how the world finds itself today with a Donald Trump presidency, perhaps we ought to show that love will always trump hate, so go on, throw a couple of Dollars into a worthy project and help bring the Tingleverse to the computer.

What I am Spending

Spent a little bit too much at the open day, bought myself the Warhammer World exclusive Imperial Knight head, I like its Cylon look, got a Landraider Proteus for my Breachers, a Blood Angels transfer sheet, a Blood Angels t-shirt, the Warhammer World exclusive Errant-Questor for my Stormcast Eternals, some Ultramarine MKIV shoulder pads, praetorian torsos and head and a pot of Dorn Yellow Edge paint.

Brain Damage and Games Exercise 

2 1/2 years ago I suffered some brain damage, and since then my games have taken on much more meaning. They are one of the few things I can still do with friends. Im a fan of the bigger chunky games that take time to play and I’m just getting into playing solo games. All these mean I have to concentrate and act as a kind of exercise for my damaged brain.Games provide me with a chance to socialise, & provide health benefits. The theraputic value of this also helps with my depression. 

Getting run over has really changed my life, and my whole aim of things now is to try and get me back into a position where I can work again. But having the issues I have currently, it’s not looking likely to happen anytime soon, which is shame, because for all I complained about work, I did enjoy feeling useful and doing something that contributed to society. 

So yeah, games help me, but for various reason, I am not getting to play many games lately, and I can tell because my mental abilities are slipping and I find my ability to concentrate less. So I am not getting the brain exercise I need, and thus I am going to have to make a bigger effort to get to things like Newcastle Gamers so that I can give my brain the workout it desperately needs.

I am, money depended, going to be entering the Kill Team tournament at the Warhammer 40,000 Open Day on Saturday, but it’s very money dependent!

What I am Modelling

This past week and a bit I have decided to clear up some of the models on my painting table that have been started and not finished. I started by finishing off the Blood Angels Tactical Squad to form a basic Kill Team, they are now done and dusted.

I then moved onto the Blood Angels Terminator Librarian, and he was actually a lot nicer to paint than I had expected him to be. And I finally based a Word Bearers Contemptor Dreadnought 

I am currently working on a Scout Squad that’s for Lost Patrol, a Word Bearers Jump Pack Chaplain and a Word Bearers Veteran. 

What I am Reading

I read White Dwarf, but other than that I haven’t been pick my Kobo for over a week now, which is simply down to how drained and tired I have been feeling.

I have been listening to audio books when I paint still, I recently finished the Damnation of Pythos, a book which in my first reading of it, was ok, not amazing but ok. But after listening to it as an audiobook, my opinion of it worsened, and I now have to agree, it just feels out of place in the series.

What I am Playing

I played in a long afternoon playing Horus Heresy on Sunday, however opposite me on the table was Christian and his Mechanicum, so I spent most of the afternoon removing models without doing any damage to him at all, really need to figure out a better way of dealing with the Mechanicum. 

I have a plan involving combining a Reconnaissance Squad with Sniper Rifles and a Heavy Support Squad with a Lascannons. I have bought some Lascannons when a friend did a Forgeworld order a while ago, but he keep forgetting to give them for me. But I have a promise from him to give me them at the Open Day on Saturday.

What I am Backing

I had backed Pretending to Grownup, a card game from Jason Anarchy of Drinking Quest fame, it’s an excellent looking game with some really cool looking art from Megan McKay.

And in a nice surprise, Quatermaster General 1914 arrived with me on the 31st, meeting it’s October delivery date, only had a brief look at it, but everything seems quite cool and I look forward to playing it.

What I am Spending

It’s coming up to Christmas, so too much, I have bought a few gifts for Lindsay and Megan as most of my nephews and nieces presents will be coming from the John Lewis account we put money into every month and the £200 of High Street Vouchers we have saved towards. I also have my nephews Max’s birthday coming up and I have paid for his birthday present.

That’s not to say I haven’t spent money, I did but myself the Burning of Prospero and then traded with a dude on Facebook for an extra two squads of MKIII Space Marines to add to my Word Bearers.

In a spate of depression I also placed a Forgeworld order and am now the proud owner of a Mhara Gal Tainted Dreadnought, which has reduced my money for the rest of the month.

A Relaxing Trip

To help celebrate my birthday, myself, Lindsay and Megan booked up a nice weekend away at a lodge in Otterburn. My plan had been to chill out and play games all weekend, the girls proffered the idea of visiting some places.

So Friday morning we feed and watered the animals and set off to spend a few hours in Rothbury a picturesque little town to the north northwest of Newcastle, where we had a nice little walk along the old fashioned ships and finally having some lunch in a little cafe. After this we set off to Otterburn and our lovely little lodge for the weekend.

And it was a really nice lodge, nicely decorated with comfortable furniture and best of all a hot tub! We had pizza that night and played Joking Hazard a game I backed on Kickstarter from the team behind the Cyanide and Happiness comic and it was a pretty good little party game.

The next day we drove up to Alnwick where we wandered round the market and Megan bought some mead from the Lindisfarne Mead shop. We had a nice dinner at the Dirty Bottles smokehouse and then went home via Barter Books, who to my dismay did not have an RPG section! That evening we had hot dogs and played a game of Munchkin Gloom.

The Sunday was dedicated entirely to games, starting out with with a nice game of Firefly Fluxx, after a lovely fried breakfast lovely prepared by Lindsay and Megan. Then we cracked open our copy of Tokaido Collectors Edition, another game we Kickstarted, the first one that we as a household Kickstarted together. We got it back in June, but it was only completed recently when we got the missing parts we needed. That was a fun game, which I won, but only because I decided to play as the game designer Antoine who wins all ties!

Then we moved onto Munchkin: The Nightmare before Christmas, a game which we had to import from America because USAoploy don’t publish their games in the U.K., but we enjoyed this version of the classic, I would have won, but Lindsay and Megan ganged up on me, wasting all the cards they had to mess with other players which then allowed Megan to win because there was noting Lindsay could do to help me stop her.

After lunch, Megan wasn’t feeling too well so she sat and watched some David Attenborough whilst me and Lindsay played Thunderbirds with the Tracey Island expansion, which is one of my favourite games. We managed to win that one, but it was close, another couple of turns and we would have lost because of of the missions was going to be so difficult to achieve.

Finally before bed we played a few rounds of Love Letter, which is always a favourite, me and Lindsay did want to play Carcassonne Star Wars Edition, but Lindsay wasn’t taking in the rules so we ended up not playing, which was a shame, I would have liked to have played more games that day, but the girls had a pace they wanted to play at. But we did have plenty of dips in the hot tub though!

Megan was sadly quite sick through the night, so we ended up leaving a little earlier than planned on the Monday to get her home quicker so she could recover for her trip to her Nana’s down in Oxfordshire.

On Tuesday I was due to play a 2500 point game of 40k but annoyingly the car decided to break down on the way to club, we did manage to get the car moving again before the RAC dude came out, and he found a fault on the booster pressure sensor, but the garage aren’t too worried about it, but we are taking him in next week to get looked over anyway, hopefully it’s just a one off, one in a million fault that won’t reoccur. 

What I am Modelling

Got my Millitarium Tempestus Kill Team ready to go. I went with the Kapic Eagles colour scheme because I actually quite like it and it’s easy to do following Duncan’s painting guide. I am seriously thinking of entering it into the Warhammer 40,000 Open Day Kill Team Tournament. I figure it will keep my busy, and not spending money, for much of the day, and I might actually stand a chance as not many players use the Millitarium Tempestus and thus they have a little bit of an unknown factor to them.

My list consists of the following

+ Troops (95pts) +

Millitarium Tempestus Scions (95pts) [2x Tempestus Scion (24pts), Tempestus Scion w/ Hot-shot Volley Gun (22pts), Tempestus Scion w/ Plasma Gun (27pts)]····Tempestor (22pts) [Bolt Pistol, Close Combat Weapon]

+ Fast Attack (100pts) +

Taurox Prime (100pts) [Taurox Missile Launcher (20pts), Twin-linked Autocannon]

The Scion with the Hotshot Volley Gun gets Relentless as an Indomitable Specialist, the Scion with the Plasma Gun is a Guerrilla Specialist and takes Preferred Enemy and one Scion with a Hot Shot Lasgun gets Sniper as a Weapons Specialist.

Hopefully this small elite team in the comfort of a Taurox Prime will manage to do some damage.

I have also started to paint up a Blood Angels Kill Team as well, but I will talk more about them next time.

What I am Reading

I have finished Ahriman Sorcerer, which was quite good, I liked how the story built up to the battle, but I was disappointed with the deaths of the characters who has supported Ahriman in the first book, it felt like they got very little in terms of appearances before they were summarily gotten rid of.

I have also been listening to some of the short stories around the Drop Site Massacre as I have been Modelling, stories you forget about like Strike and Fade, Veritas Ferrum and The Phoenician, and I am currently listening to the Crimson Fist, which I enjoy as Alexis Pollux is one of my favourite characters.

What I am Playing

A lot more than I have been of late, other than my trip to the lodge this is what we played.

Last Saturday night, me, Lindsay and Megan played a game of Bohnanza, a really cool game by Uwe Rosenberg, which is an old favourite of ours. It’s all about planting, selling and trading beans to make money, trusts me it’s better than it sounds. As usual Megan dominated the game, winning with 40 coins to my 24 and Lindsays 22.

The next Sunday, whilst Megan was at her sisters with her parents, me and Lindsay took a trip to Consett Tabletop Gaming Society, which meets on every second Sunday of the month. There we played a game of Ticket to Ride on the United Kingdom map, and I got bested very convincingly by Lindsay.

Then we cracked out Secret Hitler and we had 8 cracking games of this incredible hidden roles game. In the first 4 games I had the same Liberal card for all of them which cracked me up so much at the beginning of game 4 we had to redeal the role envelopes.

As when playing with Drew’s print and play set, I had an amazing time, it really is a game that gets your pulse racing. In one game we had passed 5 Facist laws and 4 Liberal laws and failed to elect a government 3 times, so we had to pass the first law from the top of the deck, unbelievably and statistically unlikely, it was a Liberal law wining the game for the good guys, but that game really did have my heart pounding.

The game went down very well with the Consett guys and I can certainly see them buying a copy for their collection.

What I am Backing

At the moment I am backing another project by my old friend, Sliced Quarterly. The stories in t you can read online so you get to try before you buy and they really are some very interesting stories and ways of telling these stories.

What I am Spending 

A lot less this week, simply because I have put money into Christmas presents, like an awesome Lego train set for one of the bairns. I did pick up another set of Lascannons to go with my Blood Angels Devastator Squad that Lindsay bought me for my birthday, so I can equip the whole squad with Lascannons and have them sit back and fire off laser death shots!

I also picked up as a birthday treat to myself a box of Blood Angels Assault Terminators, these guys are going to be equipped with Thunderhammers and Storm Shields and form part of my Archangels Orbital Intervention Force, I have a squad of standard Terminators already, so I am going to add another squad of Assault Terminators but give the second squad Lightning Claws. 

An Obsession on my Birthday

Today is my 34th birthday, which isn’t cool, I can clearly remember my parents turning this age and I don’t want to be an age I can remember my parents being!
But that aside I am hoping it’s going to be a nice day, Lindsay, Megan and I will be this evening going to visit my nana before heading to either Coop Chicken House or Nando’s, where we will be joined by Paul.

And because it’s my birthday I wanted to share one of my obsessions with you, Carcassonne!

Carcassonne is my all time favourite board game, now I know it’s simple and unsophisticated, but I love it. It’s got very quick gameplay, it’s easy to learn and has a good amount of player interaction, it doesn’t give you too much analysis paralysis, but at the same time does require thought and strategy.

The base game has just over 70 tiles, which you place on the table to create a landscape of the ancient French walled city of Carcassonne and its surrounding countryside, which you then deploy Meeples onto which help score you points. I am not going to go into detail about the rules, why would I need to when you can see the excellent episode of Tabletop in which it featured below!

Now what makes it my obsession, well I own all of the expansions for the base game, that’s right every single tile official tile made for the game over 40 different expansions, though I don’t own the individual release of River II owning it inside Count, King and Robber, nor the Spielbox release of The Cults which I already own through again in Count, King and Robber and Cult, Siege and Creativity.

I even went so far as to pay extortionate sums of money to buy the Die Kornkeise and La Proxada, expansions which are very hard to get hold off, and in the case of La Proxada only 72 of them were ever made.

My Big Box of Carcassonne is rather full as you can see from the picture, Lindsay got me my first copy as Big Box 4 back in 2012, but since then I have replaced it with Big Box 5 in order to get the Wheel of Fortune expansion and the full set of Meeples for Pink and Purple as 7th and 8th player sets. I have a German version of Big Box 5 because unbelievable it cost £32 to buy it and ship it to the UK, whereas buying it here would have cost me £65, so naturally I went with the cheaper option, especially as the game is language independent.

Lindsay and Megan know of and tolerate my obsession with this game, and even allow me to have a few of the variants, those being the Winter Edition, My First Carcassonne (for when I have child guests of course), Hunters and Gathers and Star Wars. But their tolerance only goes so far, in 2014 Hans im Glück, the original publisher, decided to retire the original artwork and relaunch the game with a r refreshed look for a new edition. Now I own the base game in the new edition, but Lindsay and Megan have forbidden me from buying it’s expansions in the new artwork as well. I get where they are coming from, I don’t need the same expansion twice just because it has new artwork, but the obsessive in me is really torn by it, I feel like I “need” the expansions on the new art work, and that probably why it’s sensible I have Lindsay and Megan to look after me.

With the imminent release of Temples in Japan at Spiel next week, it will be the first new expansion in the new artwork, and that’s going to be the real test, am I willing to mix the new and the old together!!!

What I am Modelling

A slow week on this front, I bought a Furioso Dreadnought so I could begin to build an Angels Blade detachment for Blood Angels based around a Blood Angels Demi-Company, so I built that with a Frag Cannon and Power-Fist with built in Heavy Flamer and a Magna-Grapple.

What I am Reading

I just finished up the short stories in Ahriman: Exodus which lead into Ahriman: Sorcerer, and I must say, I am less impressed with those than I was with Ahriman: Exile, but I think it was the protagonist I had issues with. He seemed far too whiney for a sorcerer of the Thousand Sons, too much about how he hated Ahriman when in fact it was he who made many of the choices which put him in the positions he was in.

But the one story amongst them that did stand out was The First Prince which is also available as an audio book, and that’s mostly because it was the first appearance of Be’lakor in 40k literature and he is a very interesting character with motives all of his own, unrelated to those of the Chaos Gods.

What I am Playing

Noting really, most of my play has been restricted to iPad, and that has all bee Ticket to Ride using the India map which is fast becoming my favourite map in the game.

What I am Backing

Another one with only a little bit of time left on it, but it’s Quartermaster General 1914 by Ian Brody and published by PSG, a game set during World War I using the dynamic and quite innovate card mechanic found in the original Quartermaster General. I had a chance to play this at the UK Games Expo in June and it’s quite good, all the Strech Goals have been busted through and it’s already in production, shipping to backers this month! You can back it from £35 and if you are lucky enough to be going to Essen next week you can pick up your copy then for £40 (the extra fiver is because it’s being air freighted from China).

Anyway gontake a look it’s got 2 days left on it!

What I am Spending 

A little too much again!

I bought the Spiel 2015 card for Carcassonne, to keep my collection up to speed, it’s taken me almost a full year to get hold of this tile.

I also bought two dreadnoughts, a Furioso one which I have already built and a standard one which I have yet to build, both are destined for my Blood Angels Demi Company formations for the Angels Blade detachment.

Oh and I got the How to Paint Genestealer Cults book and the Datacards for Genestealer Cults, the Datacards as it turns out are another one of my little obsessions but that’s for another day.!

Feeling Broke 

I had a horrid time at a local tournament a week gone Sunday. The tournament itself was run amazingly by Harry of Mackem Productions and he did a great job putting it together, but my not having played much 40k this year whilst I concentrated on 30k has seen me fall out of step with the local meta.

I took my friendly fluffy Iyanden army, which I won’t lie, has two lots of Wraithguard, a Hemlock Wraithfighter and a Wraithknight. But one of those Wraithguard are footslogging, and the Wraithknight is armed with a Suncannon, so it’s not that scary.

But what I had, including D weapons was so far out of line with what I came up against. My first game, against another Eldar army, lasted three turns, my Wraithknight coming off in turn one as it got shot to death by a Heavy Wraithcannon Wraithknight, and I simply removed other units in single swoops as Fire Dragons and Scatter Laser Jetbikes killed off my units one by one systematically.

My second game was a lot more fun, I played against my friend James, the eventually wooden spoon “winner” and we had a very good evenly balanced game which saw us mostly wipe each other’s armies out evenhandly. We ended up drawing, but had the game gone on another turn, his Imperial Knight would have made mince meat of my Wraithknight.

My third game saw me take on Chaos Daemons, this game lasted a lot longer, but with a Daemonic Incursion detachment with a Warpflame Host of 7 Flamers it was a really tough list. I did alright against his Chaos Space Marine allies, but I couldn’t touch the Daemons, and a Daemon Prince charging into combat against Dire Avengers is just hard to watch.

My last game saw me take on Eldar again and at this point I just lost the will to play, another Wraithknight, more Fire Dragons in an Aspect Host and plenty of Windriders with Scatter Lasers. Put it this way, I was scooping up units away with a dustpan metaphorically and only managed to kill three Jet Bikes all game with my Hemlock.

After the tournament I feel like a broken man when it comes to 40k, I am just that far behind in the meta, I don’t know what to do to catch up. I like fluffy armies and taking the most powerful broken units, well it’s something you won’t really see me do. But I have to do something, i don’t mean it like as in I want an army that will curb-stomp all others, I just want one that can stand on its own and get me mid table finishes at tournaments.

People keep saying I should go back to my drop pod Space Wolves list and play it as Blackmanes for the free drop pods, or throw in some Wulfen or Thunderwolf Cavalry, but that would to me, feel like the first steps on the road to power gaming.

Anyway it’s something to think about I guess.  
What I am Modelling
Trying to get back my hobby mojo, I am going to be playing some Kill Team at the club, so I am building two 200pts kill teams, a Millitarium Tempestus one and a Blood Angels one. 

The Millitarium Tempestus one consists of five Tempestus Scions, with a Hot Shot Volley Gun, Plasma Gun and a Tempestor with a Bolt Pistol and Chainsword, and accompanied by a Taurox Prime with Missile Launcher and Autocannons.

The Blood Angels kill team is the example squad from the Kill Team booklet, I have added a Blood Angels upgrade sprue to give the Space Marine kit just enough Blood Angels stuff to make it cool. It’s my first time using the new Space Marine kit, I haven’t had to buy a Space Marine kit for some years and I have to say it’s pretty good as kits go.
I have also built a Blood Angels Terminator Librarian, well it came packaged as a Deathwatch Terminator Librarian, but they were the same price and this came with a Deathwatch Upgrade Sprue I can add to the bitz box.

What I am Reading

I finished Praetorian of Dorn, and I have to say wow, what an ending! It’s a brave book, changing something somprbipusly fundamental about the fluff, it kept me reading right until the end.

I also read Ahriman:Exile by John French and I also really enjoyed that book, it was quite interesting to see Ahriman on the back foot, not sure of himself or his direction, but I very much enjoyed the book and have no moved on to the short story collection Ahriman: Exodus which so far is a little slow going, but I expect it will pick up. 

What I am Playing

Got three games of Kill Team in the other night using the Millitarium Tempestus. The first game I played against Tyranids, with three Tyranid Warriors and six Genestealers, and that game went quite well, he deployed quite spread out which allowed me to keep my team together hopping in and out of the Taurox taking out the nids one by one.

The second game was a total whitewash, as five Ravenwing Black Knights shot me to death with Plasma.

The third game was against 15 Dark Angels scouts, who as well as infiltrating made a scout move and were able to bring down a heavy rain of fire on me, lasted three turns, but my Scions couldn’t cope with the fire, and the individual scouts charging the Taurox with Krak grenades made short work of that.
Overall I am enjoying Kill Team it’s a lot of fun and we are talking about having a Kill Team campaign at the club, which I am looking forward to a lot. 
What I am Backing
There is just 48 hours to get in on Dungeon Fantasy, a good old fashioned dungeon delivering RPG, powered by GURPs from Steve Jackson Games. They have a great team writing it and the game box which is rather large ships from the EU at a rather reasonable $20, which is much better than what was originally proposed.

At the $70 level, which I am in on, you get the box containing the 5 books which make up the set, cardboard figures, dice and a map plus a GM screen with pre-generated characters. It’s pretty decent value in my opinion, and I have also bolted on a copy of How to Gurps GM in print and a print copy of the Companion which will contain the three Dungeon Fantasy PDF extras unlocked as part of the campaign.

So if RPGs are your thing, give it a look, and don’t worry if you can’t back it, there is zero in terms of Kickstarter Exclusives as its all about getting it to retail, and thus what you can back for will be in your FLGS next year.

What I am Spending 

With the split between Games Workshop and Fantasy Flight Games happening, I went into panic mode and have bought a few things I was holding off buying until I had the space/money. The prices on them was skyrocketing and I couldn’t afford to hold back anymore.

I picked up a copy of Forbidden Stars, a game I have wanted for a long while but been reluctant to buy because I am not sure Megan or Lindsay would be interested in it as it’s quite a heavy game and set in the 40k universe.

I also got the expansions for Relic, Nemesis and The Halls of Terra, they haven’t arrived yet as they are having to come from the Republic of Ireland, but I am currently worrying about how they will fit on the shelves, I might have to put their components in the core game box.

While I was at it, I decided to pick up a copy of Lost Patrol that was going for a song On eBay, I remember the original game, but back the. It was Dark Angels in the jungle, not Blood Angels.

And it’s not technically money I spent, but I did swap a few rare Munchkin cards for a copy of Warhammer Quest Silver Tower from a dude who runs an FLGS in Glasgow, the cards were free for me from my time as an MIB, and obviously the guy running the store would have paid trade price for the game, so it’s not as big a value swap as it seems on the surface.
I also sold my Abaddon and Loken set, I had it from when I originally looked into Heresy and was planning a Sons of Horus army, well that is until the Ultramarines tempted me to the ways of the XIIIth. Anyway the money I made from that ended up getting spent to buy an Infiltration Cadre, so along with that Tau Strike Team from Kill Team, I guess a Tau army is on the distant horizon.

New Project Needed

I need a new project to try and get my hobby mojo back.

So which project should I pick up and run with???

Blood Angels – got bits and kits to make a 2000pts army of these with plenty of variety in HQ models, most of everything has a transport and it’s all about hitting hard and fast, have many of the units built up already, and a Death Company Dreadnought already finished. Megan would be helping me with this one and I have a good mix of Death Company, some Sanguinary Guard as well as standard Blood Angels.

Tyranids – for almost two years I have had this Tyranid army sitting on my shelf, I have the Start Collecting box built and primed, the Hive Tyrant is just about finished off, plan is to paint it up as Leviathan. Sitting on the shelf I have a Wrath of the Hive Mind box, a Tyranid Swarm box, two sets of the Tyranids from Deathstorm, Genestealers from Space Hulk and the Genestealer Cult from Overwatch.

Word Bearers – I have enough models and kits to build a 3500pts army, mostly based around a Pride of the Legion/Primarchs Chosen force from a Betrayal at Calth set. Plenty of Dreadnoughts and some Gal Vorback, Ashen Circle and Lorgar in there. For this one I would need to buy three Rhinos and a Dreadnought Drop Pod. I already have painted up a Company Champion and a Contemptor Dreadnought.

So what do you guys think I should do???

Not Enough Sleep

Struggled to get to sleep last night, ended up not sleeping at all. Not sure what it is that’s got me lacking the ability to sleep, but it’s been the same the past few nights, and it’s meaning I sleep in far too late in the mornings. I got a quick two hours in this morning and was up and about by 10am, not that I would say I was functional, but a sugar free caffeine drink saw me through.

Sometimes I think half the issues I have are because of all the medication I am taking, I mean here is a photo of my pills for the week, and it’s no wonder I rattle when I walk.

This week I did take delivery of Grifters and Coup G:54 Anarchy, two games I backed on Kickstarter from Indie Boards and Games. Now I am going to admit, I have an intense dislike of Travis, the man behind the company, he is rude, arrogant and treats his backers like they are an inconvenience, especially when they catch him out in a lie. That said, his last two cycles have been vastly improved and games have been delivered with minimal of fuss. Hoping to get both of these on the table as soon as I can, and hope they aren’t added to the list of perpetually unplayed games.

What I am Modelling

Got my Word Bearers Contemptor Dreadnought with Twin-Linked Volkite Culverins finished, and I must say I am rather proud of the model, this is that standard I hope to go forward with for the Word Bearers. Let’s just hope I can keep it up.

What I am Reading

Got a few more chapters of Praetorian of Dorn read and I am enjoying it so far. Still reading Facebook and Twitter too much instead of a book though.

What I am Playing

Stupidly still noting, it’s like I keep wanting to play, but then I don’t. It’s something I need to deal with because it’s really damaging my mental health, games really engage my brain and not having a job means that my brain does need challenges. It doesn’t help that Megan hasn’t been so good in the days, nor that we are currently running up to Newcastle every night to make my nana her tea, but I desperately need to play something, even if it’s only a small game of Fluxx. Perhaps I will try and convince Lindsay and Megan to go to Newcastle Gamers this Saturday after we see my nana.

What I am Backing

Right now I am backing, in addition to Cognition #1 and One Night Ultimate Alien, Luke Slotts Year of the Nightingale, a Bahá’í inspired album of music celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Bahá’u’lláh. Now I know many of my friends don’t put much stock in religion, and that’s perfectly cool, you won’t hear me trying to twist your arm into believing, besides as a Bahá’í I am forbidden from the practice of proselytism, but I find the music of Bahá’í artists tends to be very soothing and lovely. Besides Luke is a lovely chap, when he played a performance at the Newcastle Bahá’í centre a few years ago he spent the night at my house and he was a brilliant and kind guest.

At this time the project has fully funded so I am looking forward to getting my digital copy of the album next year.

Anyway here is a video of his performance in Newcastle for you to enjoy.

What I am Spending

It’s the run up to Christmas, so my spending has gone up, as I purchase a few presents here and there for Megan and Lindsay. I also treat myself to a Pop vinyl of Spyke from Munchkin, mostly for the card, but the character will look nice in my man cave. And I may have purchased the Kill Team box, but the Tau in it will not, I repeat not become the basis of a new Tau army!

Oh and I couldn’t resist a Squirtle Squad t-shirt from Qwertee.

See you on the flipside guys  

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