So 2019….

Posted: December 31, 2019 in Uncategorized

Three posts…. that’s an all time record low!

It’s obvious enough, but I’ll come clean and say I didn’t make hobby 300. I stopped tracking mid Feb if memory serves. If I look back across the year in terms of mini related hobby I’d say I got in a good 100+ days across the year, but leaned heavily towards playing rather than painting. Playing Eve online on the other hand I definitely got over 300+ days of that!

Game wise the dominance of Hordes continued in the early part of the year, but has slowly been waning. I still enjoy the game a lot, but the continued preference of the standard two list, seventy five point steamroller games has begun to grind. So much that I’ve decided not to run any events in 2020. This may change as the year goes on, but the desire amongst local gamer’s to do something other than standard steamroller isn’t there. My local club has started an Oblivion campaign, which I’m enjoying as it’s at different points levels and using new scenarios, which may or may not be as finely balanced as steamroller is. I’ll still be playing Hordes a lot in 2020, but not at the levels of 2018 or 2019. I plan on going to both the Welsh Masters and UK Nationals again, and maybe one or two more local events as the year rolls on.

The semi void that Hordes created was filled in the summer by Burrows and Badgers. This is a cracking game played between anthropomorphic animals in a fantasy northern UK setting. The game play is fast and fun, and there is a good campaign system built into the game. Mordheim with Badgers, Hares and Rabbits if you will. The models produced by Oathsworn minis are wonderful, and as some extra reinforcements arrived under the Xmas tree this game will see more play in 2020. May even try and run a campaign day at Battlefield Hobbies at some point.

Epic A continued steadily. I managed to attend my normal three Epic-UK events, finishing mid to low as is usual. The high point was attend the World Championships in Glasgow. I’d agreed to join one of the UK teams early in the year. As the event was using NetEA list the Nids I have painted don’t work so I went using Marines, a list I don’t have a good record with. TL/DR the team I was on managed to take down the strong Scottish team in the finals and took the trophy. Definitely the high point of my mini gaming year, decade or even century!

With some epic cat herding the online D&D campaign I’ve been running is still going. We have been getting in roughly one session a month, but we managed two sessions in two weeks at one point! The players seem to be enjoying it, even with my semi inept DM’ing. The group have made there way to through many challenges and are nearing the end of the Lost Mine of Phandelver campaign. Been fun to run, and Fantasy Grounds is a great app for running this online.

Also managed to get in a handful of WWII games using my favourite Battlefield rules set. The Plastic Soldier Company also put up a pre-order system for Battlefied: Northag, and I couldn’t resist so that will land in 2020 and the cold war can get hot once more.

I’ve also managed to pick Aeronautic Imperialis, the air war game set it the 40K universe. It will be a dual use game as I plan to use the aircraft in my EpicA Vanaheim army that I want to have up and running this year. This is something I’ve been saying for at least five years (could be longer!) but it is time to have an option other than Nid’s for Britcon this year.

The final new game is a late arrival, and a surprise one too. Marvel Crisis Protocol was also under the tree. This is a new game from a company called Atomic Mass Games. They are mainly ex PP staffers, so it’s not surprise that the game rules are clear and clean. I’ve already got three games played since boxing day, and I have to say I’m enjoying it quite a lot. I have to say the mini’s aren’t the easiest to put together. There are instructions in the box, but they didn’t have sprue numbers on the pictures, so some bits were hard to work out. They have fixed this with an updated pdf on their webstite. Some of the pieces are really, really small. One model doesn’t have an elbow patch on it as both of the part supplied are now somewhere on floor near under my painting table. That said the mini’s look good once together. I think this could well be the second most game played in 2020.

Paint wise it’s been a pretty barren year. I did paint new Hordes models so I had fully painted lists for both the Welsh Masters and UK nationals, but I haven’t made much progress into the queue. With the addition of many new games the queue is growing even longer! The aim for 2020 is to keep painting more Hordes, the EpicA Vanaheim and then get both Marvel and Burrows and Badgers models done… that’s a big ask!

So 2019 was a good year for gaming overall, lets hope for more in 2020.

….and maybe blogging a bit more!

#Hobby300… 10 days in…

Posted: January 10, 2019 in Uncategorized

..and I’m still kinda on track!

Now I’m using the rule that states “Hobby means what it means to you” to play a little fast and loose for some I’m sure, but hey it’s my hobby.

The one part of hobby that does feel a bit of a stretch to me is that I’m counting some of the time I spend playing Eve Online… yes a MMO spaceship game. I like Eve, despite it’s spreadsheet in space looks and mind blowing complexity. I really don’t scratch the surface in terms of either time or knowledge. But its fun. I’m in a middle sized corp, who has plenty of fleets and only really wants you to play at least once a week. I’ll post more about Eve another time.

Warmahordes has accounted for hobby three days this week.

One day my time was spent sorting out tiebreak for the first tournament at Wargames Workshop MK on 2nd March (https://www.tiebreak.co.uk/mk-champions-march-2019/feed). It will be a 50 point Champion event, so ADR casters and themes only. Six signed up so far so looking like a nice healthy field of locals this time around.

Monday evening was spent sorting out tokens. Last year I bought the legion tokens from Frozen Forge, and jolly nice they are too (https://frozenforge.com/collections/faction-token-sets-mk3/products/draconic-legion-faction-set-mk3) so my old muse on mini’s tokens will be appearing for sale pretty soon.

Tuesday is games night at Northampton Wargamers club, with eight players turning up to play some WMH. I got a game v a returning Cryx player, who left Denny 1 just a touch too far forward, letting Typhon gun her down. Think that’s the first time I’ve ever won v Denny 1 🙂

Last night saw me back behind the screen running D&D 5e. It’s on online game using the Fantasy Grounds software. It was a lot of fun, with two new players, one player who hasn’t played in decades, and an RPG vet all battling their way through the opening scenes of the Lost Mines of Phandelver module. Plenty of laughs, some epic rolls, good and bad. A most enjoyable evening to kick the game off.

Think that’s about it for now, blogging is hobby right? #hobby300

Side note…. I must try harder to take pics of games and hobby activities!!

To get day one of #Hobby300 underway was a good one.

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I broke out my copy of Battle of Britain from the Plastic Soldier Company. I’d picked this up on Kick-starter a while ago and was keen to finally get it to the table.

The game is played at the strategic level, with German waves of bombers undertaking missions to bomb radar sites, airfields and cities while the brave RAF try to keep them at bay.

The game plays out over four turns, with seven phases in each turn.

The RAF first get to repair damaged airfields and radar stations, or return damaged planes to the game. The amount they get to do so is based on a dice pool generated by each sectors cities that aren’t damaged.

The next phase see’s both sides bring all their groups that are landed on home bases back up to full strength, three cards for the RAF and six cards for the Luftwaffe.

Next the Germans get to make their approach moves. The can be intercepted if they enter a working radar square, or when they move into a space with and RAF group. If a group arrives over it’s target it sets up to bomb. If the Luftwaffe can find a gap in radar coverage due to damage they arrive over the UK undetected, and can’t be attacked.

Now the RAF moves. First any Luftwaffe groups that are undetected can be spotted by local observer corps, another dice roll is needed here. Then any RAF groups can move three squares. If they land on a square with a German group they can then dogfight.

Now combat begins, Interceptions go first and are pretty brutal. Dice pools are generated and planes on both sides are removed. This is the quickest way for both sides to lose planes.
Next up are dog fights, these play one card at a time from each group involved, and planes can be shot down but more simply fight and return to each player.
Once all air combats are over the RAF groups must chose to either head home to rearm or stay on the board.

Now the Luftwaffe groups get to bomb. Again a pool of dice are generated and rolled to see if the target is destroyed or damaged. A single hit destroys airfields and radar, with three hits needed to destroy cities. Cities hold onto their damage so can be destroyed later. Depending on the dice results there is an Ack-Ack mechanic that my destroy more bombers.

Finally all Luftwaffe groups that reached their target have to return to base, and there is a chance that some planes will run out of fuel and be destroyed.

After 4 turns victory points are assessed by both sides, based on missions achieved and planes destroyed.

The game has three scenarios, that simulate early, middle and late phases of the battle. The second and third only differ by having a number of targets all ready destroyed and some Luftwaffe planes shot down.

We played all three scenarios and the Luftwaffe took it two to one overall.

Have to say I really enjoyed the game. Lot’s of decisions to make each turn for both sides. It plays at on OK pace, with a game taking about two hours start to finish.

The components are pretty good, and yes I do have the both the original ‘bendy’ planes and the new hard plastic ones. Being honest I didn’t think the planes were as bad as many said, but the new hard plastic ones are really nice.

Definitely I game that will make it to the table more in the future.