So I am in the middle of a doctor imposed period of rest and relaxation, not that I can do that much more, and I don’t think I have achieved any of what I was expected to do.
Its been four weeks of the six I was told to take, and I am struggling to center myself and sort out the things I am meant to do, and I think I need to sit and sort that out in the next two weeks.
So I am setting myself some targets over the next couple of weeks, lets say three weeks.
Get my studio into a constant state of tidiness
Sort out my desk (Its a huge mess)
Film a Battle Report
Finish a book
Sort out my 3D Printer
Paint that Lascannon Squad for the Death Guard you forgot you needed
So here is what I need to do
Just sit and play on my Steam Deck for at least 30 minutes a day
Get My Studio into a Constant State of Tidiness
The big things are to get some stuff into the eaves, clean up the bookcase and take some old Codexes and rulebooks to a charity shop.
I also need to put this unexpected terrain into a box, so a trip to ASDA or Ikea is needed (so I need to ask Lindsay for help, or perhaps Paul) and put the new PLEX server in its permanent home, which may also involve setting up a KDM using a Pi.
Sort Out My Desk
Linked to the above but its a bit of an issue with the left side being a huge issue
Film a Battle Report
I think I have a workflow figured out, so I am gonna try and do this next week, and perhaps do an overview of one or two of my armies.
I have been struggling so much with the electric hobs, so on Sunday, I am going to cook a meal for the otters.
Finish a Book
The brain damage is an issue here, causing concentration to really suck, but I just need to sit down and read, force myself if I have to.
Sort Out My 3D Printer
I have yet to use it since I moved here, and its been over a year!
Paint that Lascannon Squad for the Death Guard You Forgot You Needed
I forgot I didn’t have a Lascannon squad for my Death Guard and I put it in a list, so yeah, I need to build one, I have the marines, just need to buy the weapons on pay day!
I know I will need the assistance of Lindsay and Megan, but I am gonna really try to sort this out
What I Am Modelling
I started out with the Praetor for the Death Guard I got a few months ago
Then it was a pair of Azyrite Fountains I got from Stormbringer
Then I painted the Azrakh the Annihilator model I got from Warhammer+
Then I painted a T’au Strike Team
Along with an Ethereal
And a Cadre Fireblade
Plus six Shield Drones and a pair of Marker Drones!
After that it was some Mandrakes for my Drukhari
So what’s up next?
Imperial Fists Lascannon Squad x 10 & Evander Garrius
Its consistently hot, I am spending most of my time sweating hard!
In my studio its really hard due to being in an attic with a ton of tech and the weather keeps raining hard, so I can’t even have the window open to relive myself with some fresh air and have to have two fans on all the time!
I can’t wait for the coolness of autumn!
What I Am Modelling
I started off with a Big Mek with Shokk Attack Gun for my Ork, really lovely model to stand beside my resin one.
And I also painted up a Deffkilla Wartrike for the Orks as well, a really really fun model!
Followed by a trip of Canoptek Wraiths for the Necrons
And a Hexmark Destroyer for them too
After that I moved onto a T’au Stealth Team for my Tau Sept army
After that I finished off some Firestrike Servo Turrets for the Ultramarines which have been sitting on my desk for a while.
And finally I finished some more Gutrippas for the Oruuks!
So whats coming up next?
Tzaangors x 6
Ultramarines Sternguard Veterans x 5 & Victrix Honour Guard x 4
On the planet of Grendasha Tertius, a war has been raging for the past few months as a force of the Ultramarines IVth company lead by Captain Uriel Ventris have invaded the once prosperous world to take it back from the T’au Empire for the Imperium of Man.
Leading a patrol into a devastated forge complex just outside the capital, Captain Ventris comes across a small task force of Tau lead by Sub-Commander El’Myamoto, the infamous Darkstrider.
Facing off across the ruins of the forge, the two sides open fire and begin a battle for dominance!
It might have escaped your attention, but I really love the plethora of mini consoles released in recent years.
Well the consoles themselves are cool, and offer a great way to transport some awesome games to play very easily.
I much prefer emulation via RetroArch, but the mini consoles usually bring something with them, as close to original controllers as possible.
I mean you try and get a PC Engine controller outside of the box containing the CoreGrafx Mini!
There is just something so much nicer about playing with controllers that are basically like what we had as kids, and often the knock offs just aren’t as good.
But that leads into another obsession, controllers and that’s a subject for another time!
But the consoles themselves are pretty cool so let’s take a look at what’s in my collection!
The C64 Mini
The C64 Mini (note not the Commodore 64 Mini) comes with 64 classic games for the Commodore 64 and VIC 20.
The design of this one is just so adorable, yeah the keyboard doesn’t work, but it doesn’t need to, and they even got the discolouration right.
The joystick however, is to be honest, rubbish, I hear that the standalone one is better, and I think I may invest in one.
I never had a Commodore 64 as a kid, but plenty of friends did, and I remember wasting plenty of time playing Speedball and Impossible Mission.
The most irritating thing about it was to have it load up, only for it to fail at the last second meaning you had to rewind the tape and load it up again!
This particular console is great, but I wish I had grabbed the Maxi or the VIC20 for the working keyboard, but that would have taken up so much more space.
Now living in the UK, the NES wasn’t that popular or common. We mostly had the ZX Spectrum and the Amstrad CPC, and when a console did get big, it was the Master System.
I never saw a NES in person until I went to university, but the GameBoy was very common.
I got this when it first came out on release day, and it’s kinda cool, but I guess, the games in it, don’t have the same nostalgia kick for me as they would for others.
I mean I have played a fair few of these games, either in the arcade or in later rereleases down the years.
The big issue with this controller is the puddly length of the controller cables, you can’t use it in the average living room without extension cables.
And the connector itself is a Wii Nunchuck port, so the controllers themselves whilst being very very well built and almost perfect replicas of the originals, they require an adaptor to use them with PC.
Mega Drive Mini
This is my main nostalgia kick, my first console that wasn’t borrowed from a friend, the 16 Bit masterpiece that was the Mega Drive.
My parents got me and my brother one with Sonic the Hedgehog, Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle, and a three pack with World Cup Italia 90, Columns and Super Hang-On.
It also came with the Master System Convertor so we could swap games with our friends who owned the earlier system, as well as buy our own games for that system.
It was far and away the best system of the era, the software was great and there were so many fun games on it, I even saved up the money from my paper round for 6 months to buy Virtua Racing for it, cause it cost an eye watering £100 back in 1994!
The mini version is grand, comes with a lot of the big hitters, but sadly missing Sonic 3, the controllers are just *chefs kiss* but a part of me kind of wishes that they bundled the six button controllers simply because games like Eternal Champions and Street Fighter II work better with them.
PC Engine CoreGrafx Mini
The PC Engine was a weird console, it was technically an 8 Bit console, but it’s 16 Bit GPU, and the lateness of its release meant most people considered it part of the 16 Bit era.
The PC Engine was super rare in Europe, but I did know one kid who owned one, that he imported from Japan, and we did have a lot of fun playing bullet hell shooters!
The mini version is a bit of an oddity, carrying both Japanese and English language games, and there are times in here that I am rather upset didn’t get an English version, Snatcher being the biggest disappointment.
Always wanted to play that game, but the lack of a modern release, and the only English version is for the Mega CD, and that was massively censored.
But there are plenty of other games on there, and even Japanese ones which require little, if any reading.
This is a great little console and the only way to get CD Engine controllers in USB, I know 8 Bit Do have released some similar controllers, but they lack the turbo switches and instead only have a turbo button.
I had an Amiga A500, our best friends had one as well or in some lucky cases, an A1200, I even had a friend with a CD32!
The Amiga was the dominant platform that wasn’t a console for a very long time, and the versatility of what it offered was wonderful.
We used to have just as much fun with Deluxe Paint, as we did with Lemmings, Sensible World of Soccer, Alien Breed and Zool!
This platform was fantastic and the death of Commodore after the failure of the CD32 was devastating to me, but it did essentially allow to IBM PC platform to become the dominant force it is today.
The A500 Mini is the most recent addition to my collection and thanks to the developers awesome system, I have a 32GB USB stick, with every game ever published for the platform on it, including all of the CD32 games.
My only criticism is that the game pad, whilst clearly taking inspiration from the CD32 controller, is quite a bit different, but I guess I can live with that.
Being British, the SNES, well it wasn’t as big a deal as it’s Sega rival was to us.
I did have a friend with one and there were some absolutely killer games released in the platform. The Mario games are up there as classics, for a long time it was the only way to play Street Fighter II at home, and Mario Cart made its debut here.
The SNES Classic is one of the best mini console offerings, the controller cables are a bit longer than those offered by the NES Classic, but are still rather short.
This is the dud of the collection, Sony looked to jump on the bandwagon and put together this offering which in all honesty, just missed the mark, by a long shot.
Ok you have some classics, like Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid and Final Fantasy VII, but so many games that should have been on here aren’t.
No Gran Turismo, Wipeout, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater, Crash Bandicoot or Tomb Raider to name a few.
The controllers are great, but it really feels like Sony just couldn’t be arsed with this one.
The modding scene around it is great, and it’s something I should probably consider, but this is technically Lindsay’s as I bought it as a birthday present for her, so she would need to approve any modding!
Well there are other options out there, the main one I really want is the SNK Neo Geo Arcade Stick Pro, which will combine my desire for an arcade fighting stick, and a Neo Geo games machine.
But beyond that, that would be it, unless a Master System Mini or a Dreamcast Mini hits the market. I really cannot see a PlayStation 2 Classic, due to the poor response to the PlayStation Classic and the technical issues would probably prevent development of a Saturn or N64 Mini.
I already have a PlayStation 3 and a Wii, which can play GameCube games, so realistically the only think I want that’s not a mini console, is a PlayStation 2.
What I Am Modelling
I painted up a unit of Sicaran Infiltrators to add to my Adeptus Mechanicum army.
And begun the painting of a T’au Fire Warriors Strike Team, which I finished up last Saturday night.
I am then finished a Necron Chronomancer.
And I am currently working on a pair of Necron Tomb Blades.
On Saturday, myself, Lindsay and Megan played a game of Ticket to Ride London, and I lost, really badly, Megan blocked a route which ruined my whole strategy, but that’s the game!
On the Tuesday I enjoyed a couple of game of Just Oney with Lindsay, Megan and Jane, we only scored 5 on one game and a perfect 13 on another.
What I Am Spending
I grabbed the new rulebook for Dropfleet Commander so I can sort out running some battle reports and demos of this amazing game!
I also bought the Leagues of Votann dice, I am not sure if I want an army of these guys, but I grabbed the dice in case I do.
I got a four pack of USB Sticks, I only wanted a single 16GB stick, but turned out the 4 pack was the cheapest option for that, weirdly.
I needed a 32GB stick as well for the Amiga games, so picked up the same type, just bigger.
And I replaced the little drawer I keep my USB sticks etc with a new one.
My beloved fridge, that I have had since I started university in 2001, has died, it was a fair few years old when I got it, and it’s lasted for 21 years with me, at times having to serve as the houses main fridge.
The last 10 years it’s been exclusively for the storage of pop, snacks and medicine, and since we moved was kept in my studio.
But last week it ceased functioning all together, and we had a look on eBay and Facebook Marketplace and found this London themed Husky fridge for £50, and we picked it up on Wednesday night.
I managed to score a cheap copy of Marvel’s Avengers for PS5, I know it’s had mixed reviews, but you can’t go wrong for £8.
I wanted the PS5 version because it has Spider-Man in it!
We also grabbed a 4TB Hard Drive to add to the PLEX server, adding Paul’s library has taken up a considerable amount of space on the existing drives.
Adding this drive we found sealed and unopened on Facebook marketplace, for a killer price, had allowed us to expand the server space to 13TB in total.
For Dropfleet Commander, I grabbed some Nickar Class Hunter-Killers for my Scourge fleet.
Also some fleet condition tokens, but they have all been put away now!
What I Am Winning
A little prize came, a cast photo from Star Trek: Picard Season 1, and that made me very very happy!
I have mostly had a couple of weeks of being down, to start with, we had a tragic and untimely death in the family and that and its circumstances which if I may be so dramatic, could very well be the worst thing to have ever happens on the maternal side of my family.
To further make me down we have beenhaving issues at the flat we own in Newcastle, we already had to replace the boiler this winter, something we could have gotten done for free had someone followed up on something they were supposed to have done for us, and now the washing machine broke down!
And of course when they first tried to deliver it, they refused to install it because the old washing machine had a leak, so we had to pay £75 to a plumber to go out and stop the leak, which would have stopped anyway once the old machine had been removed.
I was also a bit ill earlier in the week, including one day where I threw up my medication, which resulted in me being all over the place for a day as my meds really do keep me stable and out of pain, so I was going from manic to depressive all day.
We have also had to have some repair work done in our flat as on of the stairs slipped out of its fixings and part of it went through the ceiling below it, the landlord was absolutely shocked at how badly it had been installed, but he had joiners out to inspect and check the whole staircase and thankfully it was just the one which was bad.
We have a temporary step fitted whilst the new one is cut, it’s been approved by an inspector from the council but it still doesn’t feel safe, but that’s probably just me feeling insecure about it know the old one was dodgy.
And to top it all this week, when buying some Xbox Live credit on eBay, I managed to get someone’s house raided by the Anti-Terror Squad!
No I didn’t SWAT them, basically he asked for a scan of my driving licence and passport, now I am a paranoid git (it’s true I take tablets for it) so I think that isn’t quite right, so I say no, he says he won’t send the code. So I call eBay up, who then make me call ActionFraud, who go nuts and put me though to the Anti-Terrir Squad who themselves think that they have stumbled onto a way that terrorists have been obtaining details for fake IDs!!!
So I get a call the next day and they have conducted a dawn raid against the guy, and yeah he does have loads of driving licence and passport details, but simply because he was trying to protect himself from scammers on eBay!
But regardless what he was doing is pretty naughty and he is being charged with crimes relating to the Data Protection Act and possession of a stun gun, and I am possibly going to be called as a witness for his trial if he has one!!!
So yeah that’s all contributing to be feeling quite low.
If I am honest the stuff that has been going on has in a way been a distraction form the family death, it’s hit me hard because me and this person were extremely close growing up.
What I am Modelling
Yeah I have built the first 1000 points of my Tau, well 1009 points if you want to get technical! In addition to the Devilfish I built a couple of weeks ago, I have built a Start Collecting Box and Burning Dawn. Combined that gives me 2 Ethereal, 10 Fire Warriors, 3 XV8 Crisis Suits, 10 Pathfinders, a TX4 Piranha and 3 XV25 Stealth Suits, oh and not forgetting all those Drones too!
I have also almost finished building the Word Bearers for the 22nd as well, I also finished painting the Ashen Circle and a unite of Legion Veteran Tactical Marines, who are armed with 2 Mars-Pattern Heavy Bolters and a Sgt with a Lightning Claw. The Mars-Pattern Bolters are really quite cool and I am glad I went with them, but have fitted them, I can say with certainty that they would not have fitted a MKIII Marine without some serious cutting down of his vambrace. The ammo belts are also a little difficult to get into place, but mind you a lot of that could be bacause I mount my models on the base, and putting the basing material on before I start painting.
I didn’t get finished the Gal Vorbak, Mhara Gal, Legion Tactical Support Squad or 2 Rhinos. I feel a bit crappy going to play with unpainted models, but you know, some personal stuff can up and I kinda needed to stop painting because I had to paint, and paint because I wanted to paint for a bit.
So I did start painting the 3 Crisis Suits and I have gotten as at as getting their armour done, going to try and finish them next week.
What I am Reading
I actually haven’t read anything this week barring news and magazines. I have read through the Fall of Cadia tonight, and well talk about advancing the story!!! But I won’t spoil it for anyone.
I finished listening to Betrayer this week, and have just started on Fear to Tread, a book which I really enjoy and love even more so since a few years ago I got to spend an being with the author James Swallow as he told me about how he approached writing this book.
What I am Playing
We finalised the list of games to form our 10×10 Challenge, the final list consists of:-
King of Tokyo
Lords of Waterdeep
Sentinels of the Multiverse
Last week we had Paul around so we began Pandemic Legacy, and January got off to a bad start. We had early success in curing the blue disease, but got hit with a few outbreaks early on. We managed to then cure the yellow and black diseases and were making progress to curing the red one, but we had neglected South America, and a chain reaction of outbreaks saw us lose the game and have one city hit Panic Level 2!!!
We will tackle January again in a few weeks, it felt weird changing the game, but this is going to be an interesting experience, I just hope we have a fun campaign and we make it to December without destroying the world!
This past fortnight we have also played King of Tokyo, Tsuro and Bohnanza.
What I am Backing
Currently backing Light and Dark which is an expansion for a game which I backed last year, Ember. The creator was responsible for Lindsays best moment of the whole weekend, his enthusiasm really made her rather happy, so I was happy to back his first expansion for Ember and I am looking forward to getting this one as well which looks like it adds some different elements to an already enjoyable game, plus the dude only lives in Scarborough so is almost local!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Shadows of the Past finally arrived and I will post a bit more about this next time.
I did get through my copy of Steal This Game, plus one extra, need to get to give this a game and see how good it is. Either way I am happy to give to the campaign.
What I am Spending
I sold a couple of bits and bobs, so I had a bit of money this fornight, and feeling down I went on a mini spending spree and bought a KV128 Stormsurge for my Tau and a copy of Doom for the Xbox One plus a Season Pass for it.
I got myself a USB 3.0 hub to replace one that broke, and a friend was selling a 2016 Imperial Space Marine so I bought that one with the idea of turning it in to a Knight Errant.
Oh and I went on eBay and bought another Primus Medicae, this way I can have one for my Word Bearers and my Ultramarines.
I am hurting right now, I had a pretty rotten week, but on Saturday I got some news which has completely shaken my world.
I can’t and won’t go into it here at this time, but it’s left me utterly in shock, today to try and cope with it I found myself drinking bourbon to try and numb the pain, I know that makes me a bad Bahá’í, but I fell back on an old and very destructive coping mechanism.
This afternoon to try and distract myself from the pain, I got myself off the bed, where I had spent most of the day staring at the ceiling and went to my man cave to start something.
The Word Bearers project was going to be 15 days of intensive painting, so I have put that aside and will be playing with an unpainted army, which is something I usually never do, but I don’t think I have the heart for 15 days of hardcore painting.
So I decided to pull out my Tau and build the Formation out of one of the three Start Collecting boxes I bought to start the army with. I tonight got built the Ethereal on a Hover Drone and three XV8 Crisis Suits, all with two Burst Cannons (I had to crack open another kit to get cannons five and six), and equipped two of them with target locks, the Shas’Vre is getting a Drone Controller.
Tomorrow I am going to spend the day up in the cave and build the Drones for the Crisis Suits, they are all going to be Marker Drones, and build the Fire Warriors, using the set up as described in the Kill Team booklet. If there is time I will then start on the Burning Dawn boxset because with those two boxset Formations combined I will have a little 1000pt army built with a few different units on to start testing out how the Tau actually work in combat.
It’s all just a distraction but right now that’s exactly what I need.
What I am Modelling
Other than the Tau, I am almost there with the Ashen Circle, but there is so much detail on them, and I built the Mahara Gal.
What I am Reading
Last night I finished reading Weregeld, which was a fitting way to end Corax’s story prior to Terra, was also nice to see an appearance by the Wolf King too.
It feels like the series is coming to its close, which is good in a way as it’s has been going on for a long time, but it’s sad in other ways because I have really been enjoying reading them for the past few years. But all things must end.
I also fitted in the Grey Raven, one of the shorts from the Advent Calendar, and that was alright, but it once again showed that Malcador is Just as big a dick as the Emperor himself.
What I am Playing
To get my brain working tonight we played Thunderbirds, we played it with the Tracy Island expansion, which has become a preferred way to play the game recently, and I pulled Parker as my character, Lindsay got Lady Penelope and Megan had Scott Tracy.
We got off to an okay start, what with two of us starting away I Europe and all, and we solved the first couple of disasters with ease. But that luck didn’t hold, for mission attempt after mission attempt we kept on rolling Hoods, and pulled so many Hood Advances cards out of the disaster deck it wasn’t funny.
We ended up one Hood advancement away from him completing his second scheme for quite a while, until we attempted our last rescue attempt and we got another Hood.
We only got 30 minutes of play in, but it was tense, it was quite late otherwise I think we would have given it another go.
Thunderbirds is still currently my favourite game, I just can’t get enough of it.
I have also been playing a lot of Fallout New Vegas, this is my third attempt at the game, hopefully I can complete it this time without getting distracted by something else.
What I am Backing
Nowt, although I am getting continually annoyed with IDW over the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shadows of the Past game. It shipped to the Yanks at the end of October, but it didn’t even make it to the EU until a month later, and then spent a month in Customs, and yet still it doesn’t appear to be shipping.
Now I know we can expect Kickstarter’s to have delays, but the delays here seem oddly much longer than other projects I have backed, and it doesn’t help that IDW have kept us in the dark over the situation, but it’s annoying when friends who did my back the game have already bought it at retail. I know I am getting a bunch of exclusive stuff with my Works Edition, but I really wish I knew what was going on right now.
What I am Spending
Absolutely nothing this week apart from an audiobook, which was the Leman Russ instalment of the Primarchs series, and I don’t get to download that until the 14th, Tau stuff that I ordered around Christmas continues to arrive, I am currently waiting on a last Riptide and a Devilfish, and I sold a couple of bits the other night so now have enough to afford the second Stormsurge which will be the last addition to my project pile for quite some time I think.
Oh actually one thing I did but is paint, Megan and Lindsay went to the cinema today and were already going to Games Workshop to pick up my delivery of the Tau Sept transfer sheet for me, so I asked them to pick up two Layer paints, a Dry paint and a bottle of Shade for me.