Monday, December 31, 2018

December Games

December got off to a slow start... Then slowed down a bit more... and then picked up again over the holidaze... but not so much as in previous years (we watched a lot of movies this month...).

Monday, 3 December 2018 - Wrath & Glory

I was getting excited about the "imminent" release of Wrath & Glory (STILL WAITING!), and so decided to run Blessings Unheralded (the Free PRG Day quick-start rules and introductory adventure) again - for a different group of players.

I ran it for a bunch of guys from the local 40K league. While the last group approached he'd things from a completely different way than the authors intended... These guys when in a completely different direction - also apparently not envisioned by the authors. Ultimately they saved the day... sort of... and were much quicker about it. Being regular 40K players - who have read a lot of the fluff - they picked up on stuff that the other group would have had no idea about. Fun bunch of guys - kept me on my toes...

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Not a game I play in, but on the 4th Finnegan played in the final adventure of a D&D campaign he's been playing in for three years now. They started playing at King Me Boardgamery, but somewhere in the second year it was just getting too busy and noisy there and so we offered up our place to play at. The character he started the campaign actually died a couple months in, and since then he's been playing a draconian cleric/paladin of Tyr... We always know when he was about to hit something as he would shout out "TYR'S JUSTICE!". I am curious to know what his new character's battle cry will be? I was trying to convince him it should be "NOT THE FACE!"

Saturday, 8 December 2018 - O Zoo Le Mio

Fun little game of managing and expanding a zoo. There and bidding/drafting and tile-laying elements to it. We haven't played in a while.

My zoo at the end of the game. I totally crushed it. Like, I had more points than both kids combined. You really have to get as many tiles early on in the game - I feel like if you end the first turn with money, you're probably doing something wrong.

Saturday, 22 December 2018 
Colonial Twilight: The French-Algerian War, 1954-62

Didn't get in another game for two weeks...

My friend Kurtis came over and brought his copy of Colonial Twilight: The French-Algerian War! I LOVE these COIN games from GMT, but I am apparently utterly clueless at how to prosecute either a guerrilla war or a counter-insurgency campaign!?

I played the Front de Liberation Nationale and Kurtis played the French Government. This one was interesting as it's a little different than the others in that it's only a two-player game - all the others I've played are four-player games, so you always have a supposed ally - whose one victory conditions are often at odds with your own!

Tuesday 25 December 2018 - Race for the Galaxy

Another family favourite that we haven't played in a while: Race for the Galaxy! My initial start cards didn't really point to any sort of theme (I love having a solid theme to my tableau - it's probably more important to me than, y'know, actually winning...), but I had a little bit of an Alien theme going on by the end of the game - and I think I even won...? Probably all the prestige - and the bonus victory points for being the only one with prestige for most of the game. It's my least favourite element of the game. I don't really feel like it adds anything to the game...

Wednesday, 26 December 2018

Well, first we went out to the annual Boxing Day Sale at Dragon's Den Games...

Always busy at the Den on Boxing Day... Line up went all the way to the back of the store - and for a bit wrapped around and back towards the front!

I mostly picked up 40K stuff: a Valkyrie, a few metal minis (Cadian Snipers, Kal Jericho and Scabs, Castellan Crowe, and a eldar Warlock), two Kill Team Commander boxes (Astra Militarum and Drukhari), and a bunch of Black Library books - including the fluffy book to go along with Blackstone Fortress (which I'm about half way through, now).

Finnegan bought a D&D book, a Read Dragon Inn expansion, A Star Wars: Edge of Empire adventure, a D&D mini for his character in the NEW campaign his group will be starting in the new year, and some Kroot (because I pointed out the January White Dwarf preview where there will apparently be rules for Kroot Mercenaries in Kill Team).

The Girl grabbed Codenames: Harry Potter, The Shadowrun Crossfire Prime Runner Edition refit kit (to make the edition she has playable with the new stuff they're coming out with?), Kids on Bikes the Role-playing Game, a harlequin Solitaire miniature and a great big Owlbear miniature!

Later we tried out her new Codenames: Harry Potter game

Like, FOUR TIMES. (It plays pretty quick).

This is a more co-op variant of the regular Codenames games - both sides are giving clues to the other side (and have different maps). You are both trying to locate members of the Order of the Phoenix. Unlike other versions of codenames that have only one assassin, there are three Deatheater/assasins on each map (that if the other team guesses, you automatically lose!). Interestingly, some of the positions that are death eaters one YOUR map are . We lost three of the four games. The maps are two sided and each side has nine locations for Order of Phoenix members, some are the same as the one on the other side that the other team is looking at - between the two maps there are 14 spaces that will eventually be covered (if you complete it and win!).

We also played Unstable Unicorns. One of the main things The Girl had been looking forward to getting at the Den was a couple expansions for this... but they were all sold out of them!

My stable at the end of the game. I won.

Later we played a game of Castles of Burgundy. Fun game. Still takes us a while to play - so we were up quite late playing it. I felt like I was doing good... Wasn't too far behind Amanda and thought I'd be getting a fair few points at the end of the game.... but then Amanda got MORE and just crushed us.

Thursday, 27 December 2018 - Terraforming Mars

I actually got this from my folks for Xmas LAST year... and still hadn't played it!! I had signed up to play it at ToonCon this year, but was utterly exhausted by Saturday evening and went home to sleep instead of staying to play.

I decided over the holidaze I would sit down and figure out the rules and set up a game for the family. As it turns out the game rules are pretty simple and straightforward (somehow I imagined they would be very complex...?)

I really like the game - some resource management... Not a lot of luck or chance - other than the random cards drawn... so many different approaches to victory. Amanda totally hammered us this game. We were pretty close in Terraforming Rating at the end of the game, but then she got a pile of points for tiles on the board...

Lessons were learned.

Friday, 28 December 2018 - Terraforming Mars, Again.

We played a second game of Terraforming Mars on Friday and my friend Robyn joined us. Having learned a bit from the last game - I was determined not to be left behind on the placing of tiles..

All my stuff at the end of the the game.

A lot more greenery and cities out there this game.

A lot of them were mine (I was red)... I kind of left everyone in the dust. Looking forward to playing this again - and having my ass handed to me now that they've all cottoned on to the necessity of getting tiles out there!

Saturday, 29 December 2018 - Star Wars: Edge of Empire

Finnegan offered to run a game of Edge of Empire for us. He's been playing in a campaign since September - they play almost weekly.

In the afternoon we made characters. Amanda made a Rodian (like Greedo) Bounty Hunter named Lakshmi Gumong. The Girl made a Wookie medical doctor named Chirubnifer.

I decided I'd play an IG-series assassin droid (IG-37) that some smart ass reprogrammed to be a protocol droid. Captain Gumong purchased me at a bargain basement price from a pair of Jawas thinking I'd add some muscle for her bounty-hunting operation. The Jawas swore all I needed was a new power pack - the old one had died and wouldn't recharge any more... and they didn't happen to have any they could sell her. By the time she found some and fired me up they were long gone. She first discovered my "inability to harm" programming in a armed stand off where she ordered me to shoot some thugs defending her quarry and I told her "But I can't do that, it's against my programming!" she says something like "and you waited until NOW to inform me of this!?"

Oh, and I convinced both Amanda and The Girl that Amanda's character didn't understand Wookie, and for some reason, out of the 3 million forms of communication I've been programmed with, my Wookie language program is a bit faulty - so any time The Girl's character wanted to say something She would growl and howl like a Wookie and I would "translate" - basically just totally making something up that generally had nothing to do with the matter at hand...

Hijinks ensued.

There were a lot of laughs..

We ended up doing a job for a Hutt - going to check out a mini facility he'd recently acquired as part of some winnings at in a game of chance. We were to ascertain the profitability of the enterprise and bring back 100,000 credits - the profit he was expecting to receive for the last cycle. We arrived to find the place seemingly abandoned - and then discovered some rogue droids that seemed to have taken over the place. We need up staying up pretty late  and have to leave it on a bit of a cliffhanger... hopefully we'll be able to continue the campaign in the new year.

Sunday, 30 December 2018

We'd originally planned to play Scot Pilgrim's Precious Little Card game - one of the games on the Tower of Shame - a pile of games I've acquired in the last year (or so...) but have yet to play. I ended up spending the entire day assembling this crazy new bed that Amanda ordered for The Girl. At the end of the day I was feeling a little ill and crazy tired and just not in the mood for reading rules and learning new games so instead we ended up playing... well... some other games.

We played one round of Codenames: Harry Potter - and won!

I like this better than Codenames: Pictures (the other Codenames game we have). There are actually pictures on the other sides of the Harry Potter cards - but they're pictures from the movies (usually of the word on the other side) and so they're of a specific thing - unlike the illustrations in Codenames: Pictures which are often like; WTF is that?!

Then after a bunch of "I don't know what do you want to play... I don't know what do you want to play..." we eventually settled on Century: Golem.

I totally thought Amanda had this one in the bag. I ended the game with five cards, but the last one I picked was only eight points, and she'd picked up a twenty and a sixteen and I was sure I'd only picked up cards that were around 12...

Kind of forgot about the eighteen I picked up early in the game... edged her out by four points, the kids weren't far behind either.

Monday, 31 December 2018

Today we planned to have a day of playing games together and watching movies. We ended up sleeping in really late and not really getting around to starting with the games until mid afternoon. I still have a headache, but wasn't feeling as bad, so I sat down to figure out Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Card Game. I had talked to someone who had played and, I can't remember exactly what they said, but I got the impression that it was confusing and convoluted. When I finally read the rules, they seemed pretty straightforward...?

The first Evil Ex we decided to face was Lucas Lee. I played Stephen Stills (the Talent), Finnegan played Ramona Flowers, The Girl played Knives Chau, and Amanda played Scott Pilrgrim.

I thought it was actually a pretty fun little deck-builder with a totally entertaining theme. If you're not a Scott Pilgrim fan, you might not dig it quite so much... but maybe you might, if you really love deck-building games...?

I ended up winning - just barely - Finnegan had defeated Lucas Lee and had a nice little engine going in the acquisition phase - picking up PILES of extra cards every turn. If I hadn't acquired a Crappy Apartment, he certainly would have and totally won...

This evening we're planning to finish up the Star Wars: Edge of Empire game and then watch a movie (or two) - if there's time...

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

The next two posts will probably be a brief look back at 2018 and then some planning for 2019.

Thanks for stopping by and for all your kind comments this year and I hope you all have a fabulous New Year!

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Grey Knight Commanders (and other stuff)

Happy Holidaze to all, and, for those that celebrate it, a very merry Christmas to you all.

Over the weekend I managed to finish up three more Grey Knights - all command elements.

From left to right a Brotherhood Champion, a Brother Captain, and a Justicar.

Brother Champion Tyson - a Headquarters element for the Grey Knights (also a commander option for Kill Team). I put him on a slightly larger base to make him stand out from the others a bit. Unfortunately I two other metal Grey Knight Strike Squads off eBay and both include this figure as the squad's Justicar... Ah, well... They'll go on smaller bases...

Brother Captain Alan - in Terminator Armour. A second Headquarters element for the Grey Knights. Once I have the two other Strike Squads painted I'll be able to field these as an allied "Battalion" Detachment. I have no real desire to add any more to this force.

I don't know... I guess if some one GAVE me a couple of Land Raiders or I happened upon some of those old school metal Grey Knight Terminators...

Justicar Jeff - commander of the first Strike Squad.

The entire force - so far...

I don't have the Grey Knights codex... and... don't really even plan to get it... (Unless I start playing and using these in the league or tournaments... I'm really only planning to use them occasionally when facing chaos in fun games with friends - where we usually just use Power Levels to put together forces and I'll just use the stats I have in the Index: Imperium 1). Using the data sheets from Index: Imperium 1, this force looks like this:

Brother Captain in Terminator Armour - Power Level 9 - Storm Bolter, Nemesis Force Sword

Brotherhood Champion - Power Level 6 - Storm Bolter, Nemesis Force Sword

Strike Squad - Power Level 7
Justicar with Storm Bolter, Nemesis Force Sword
3x Grey Knights with Storm Bolter, Nemesis Force Halberd
1x Grey Knight with Incinerator

Purgation Squad - Power Level 9
Purgator Justicar with Storm Bolter, Nemesis Force Halberd
4x Grey Knight Purgators with Incinerators

A total of 31 Power Level so far. To this I'll be adding another two Strike Squads (Power Level 7) for a total of 45 Power Level - probably in the neighbourhood of 900 points -  and then I'm DONE!

In other news...

Look what arrived just in time to give to myself as a Sanguinalia gift! There's a plastic space marine there for scale.

I kind of lucked out with the other two, they were prepped and primed and ready to be painted. This one was fresh out of the box...

Seriously... in came with the original box... and there is going to be a LOT of work to get this prepped for painting - carving/sanding/filing off mould lines - filling air bubbles - repairing other flaws with green stuff... Ugh... It will look pretty rad when it's done though! And though it will take a bit longer that I'd expected (like a LOT longer than I expected) it's still jumped to (very near) the front of the painting queue.

My folks also gave me this for Xmas.... So, I'll be assembling and painting these over the holidaze as well...

Finnegan also got Warhammer Quest: Shadow over Hammerhal, so we'll BOTH be assembling and painting up a storm in hopes of playing a lot of Warhammer Quest in the new year!

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I don't think any of these painting projects will be finished enough to be posting pictures any time soon... so the next posts will probably be looking back at 2018, the Game Plan for 2019, and a December Games Round-up.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

It Seemed Like a Good Idea At The Time...

The Reaver Titan hasn't even arrived (although, according to the tracking information, it is in Canada and left Mississauga yesterday and is scheduled for delivery next week some time), Ive gone and done it again...

In my defence, I'll point out these Armorcast beasties paint up rather quickly and it won't linger on the unpainted mountain very long... and these old Eldar Titans don't show up on eBay nearly so often as the Imperial ones. (I had also bit on a Phantom Titan that came up a month or so ago... still kicking myself that I didn't go a bit higher....)... AND I got it for about the same price as a knight - and much, much less than the current Forge World Revenant Titans!

I'm going to be able to have apocalypse games at home! Paired with The Girl's Wraith Knight we'll have some hard-hitting Aeldari that can take on my Imperial Armour!

In other news... 

the kids and I played a little Very Scary Solstice concert for some friends and family last night... (We played about 10 traditional Xmas carols - but had song books with alternative lyrics inspired by the writings of H.P. Lovecraft published by the HPL Historical Society). I've only just started learning to play the cello - like in September... and I've had six lessons... so I had a hard time keeping up with the kids, but there was so much loud singing and laughing, I'm sure no one noticed the garbled bits I was playing...

We're playing a second concert tomorrow with more traditional lyrics for other friends and family who... well... wouldn't understand the context of the other songs (or the sense of humour required) to really enjoy them...

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I'm not sure... probably the last of the Grey Knights - Justicar Jeff finally arrived, and an as-yet-unnamed Brotherhood Champion and Brother Camptain in Terminator Armour...

I guess I'm not getting Mice & Mystics or the Rogue Trader sets done BEFORE Xmas...

Thursday, December 20, 2018

MORE Grey Knights

I finished up a few more Grey Knights...

The lot of new ones. the dudes with incinerators are from that batch of ten or so that I got for $5. The extra guys with Nemesis Force Halberds I picked upon eBay to finish off two squads.

I have a Justicar and a Brotherhood champion that arrived this week still to paint as well (after I finish stripping the old paint off) as a Brother Captain in Terminator armour (who is just about finished - he required some converting, but is almost done). The Justicar will finish two squads and the Other two will give me some headquarters options so they can be fielded as a Patrol detachment.

I have to admit I actually just bought a SECOND Strike Squad or these older metal Grey Knights, and am on the lookout for a third so they could be fielded as "Battalion" detachment. I am a bit of an idiot - a month or so ago if you asked me if I would ever put together a force of Grey Knights, I probably would have laughed at you and asked "Why would I want to do that!?" All I can say is I'm a sucker for a good deal... Of course the good deals are never enough to field a complete force, so then I end up spending waaaaaaaaay more than I ever would have intended to get that good deal into a useable force... I should have stopped at the Kill Team...

I've done a little reorganizing of the original group, and repainting of a couple of shoulder pads and swapping one of the ones previously armed with an incinerator into the Purgation Squad. The Strike Squad now all have left shoulder pads that have a while background and the Purgation Squad all have left shoulder pads that are red. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with the second Strike Squad. I did this to make them more easily identifiable. Do I pick NEW colours for the second (and possibly third) Strike Squads? Or do I just make them white like the first Strike Squad. So far my palette for this force has been metal, gold, red, and white... do I really WANT to introduce more colours? I guess I could use black and metal...? Or If I did white I could conceivable reorganize some of them into a single larger squad of ten - because they CAN be fielded in squads of ten - should the need occur...

The Purgation Squad: Justicar Brian, Brother James, Brother Robin, Brother Scott, and Brother Kyle.

The Strike Squad/Kill Team - so far Brother Blake, Brother Trevor, Brother Curtis, Brother Steve, and Brother Gordon. (The second incinerator is allowed in Kill Team, if fielding these for regular 40K, on of the incinerators will be swapped out for Justicar Jeff... when being used in Kill Team, one of the guys with the Nemesis Force halberds will be swapped out for Justicar Jeff.... y'know.. when I finish painting him...).

The whole force along with their Ordo Malleus Inquisitor and part of his retinue. (I've also recently picked up a few old metal Necromunda figures that I'm going to use as Inquisitorial acolytes - stay tuned for those!)

I've also done some taking stock of my 40K forces/projects I'm thinking about trying to finish up next year. In addition to Tallarn and Valhallan forces that need painting (and a few more Kill Teams... and a tonne of terrain...), I have an Aeldari craft world force - and I'm NINE miniatures away from being able to organize the force into a "Brigade" detachment for 40K (y'know, once they're all PAINTED!). Unfortunately they're not all of one type - I need 3 Howling Banshees, 1 Fire Dragon, 2 Warp Spiders, and 3 Swooping Hawks - ideally one of each of these being an exarch... So I've done some snooping on eBay - and the crazy thing is, in few cases, it would be cheaper for me to buy a full squad of FIVE than it would be to buy single figures!? But buying full squads would leave me in the same situation - with incomplete squads!? GAH!?

Other (not-so-40K) projects for the new year - finishing up French and English Seven Years War forces for Rebels and Patriots, a few forces for The Pikeman's Lament, and a couple Dwarf forces for Dragon Rampant.

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Probably the Brother Captain, Brotherhood Champion and Justicar Jeff. Not sure what I'm going to name the Captain and Champion yet...

After that...? Games!? More Minis!?

Maybe some background fluff for a Call of Cthulhu character I've been developing for a campaign I'll be playing in the new year....?

Of course once that Reaver Titan arrives, it will likely jump to the front of the queue!

Friday, December 14, 2018

Oops! I Did It Again!

So I kind of did this thing again...

Um... yeah...

So the Eritque Arcus Maniple now has a Reaver Titan - or it will, when it ever gets here!

This means I'll be able to field a full Super Heavy Detachment with an Adeptus Titanicus faction keyword... of course that detachment is going to be 270 Power Level - or 8000 points - about the size of FOUR tournament armies combined!?

Go Big or Go Home, right?

Now what colour and pattern to paint it with...? I was thinking a bright turquoise blue. But what pattern? I don't want to do Cheetah spots - If I was going to do cheetah spots, I should have done it on  one of the smaller Warhound Titans. Jaguar? How different is that from a Leopard? I was thinking "lion" at one point, but then there'd really be no patterning - unless I did something to make it look like it had a mane?

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog: 

Probably NOT the REaver Titan.. It'll probably be a week or two before it shows up.

I should get those Mice and Mystics minis done...

(hate that "S" word...)

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Tigris Viridi - Warhound Scout Titan

A second, old Armorcast Warhound Titan arrived in the mail for me a week and a half ago. It's really all I've been working on since. By this past weekend I thought I'd settled on colours and had most of the green and purple painted...

Then I decided the green was too dark after all...

Not nearly enough contrast -and looked positively dull next to Pardus Purpura...

And so I started again with MORE test bits and settled on a lighter colour

And started all over again... mostly...

I have to say I'm much happier with the lighter colour now.

So this is Tigris Viridi. Commanded by Princeps Mozzer. The crew is rounded out by two Moderati; Moderati Joyce (Steersman) and Moderati Marr (Sensors, Communications, Weapons) and two Tech Priests Ro-Urk350 and Pom-Fret681.

Tigris Viridi joins it's partner, Pardus Purpura in the Eritque Arcus Maniple of Legio Amare Feles.

Pardus Purpura is commanded by Princeps Smythe. The crew is rounded out by two Moderati; Moderati Cooper (Steersman) and Moderati Gallup (Sensors, Communications, Weapons) and two Tech Priests 0-Donnel and 6-Abrels.

Some pretty pictures for scale.

Working in tandem with Pardus Purpura and some armour from Tallarn.

Some infantry added in for scale.

Yeah... I'm not sure any sane infantry or tankers would want to operate THIS CLOSE to a Titan - even a smaller, nimbler one like a Warhound. I mean, beyond the possibility of getting trod upon by it, anything that's actually shooting at it is going to be laying down a world of hurt to anything that happens to be in the immediate vicinity!

Tiger Stripe pattern from above.


Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Wish I could say we'd get to see these in action, but I really have NO IDEA when I'll ever get them on the table. I mean, it's 150 Power Level between them. Last year's Chapter Approved increased the point cost to 2000 EACH!?

If not before then, in a little less than two weeks all our regular activities will be wrapped up and we'll have a week and a bit of nothing much to do - and I REALLY hope we get a LOT of gaming in then! Maybe I should get some painting done for some of the games we'd like to play! (Mice & Mystics and Rogue Trader!)