Thursday, April 28, 2011

A better business model

These days it's passe for many of us jaded veterans of the miniature hobby to throw stones at the "too big to fail" Death Star that is Games Workshop. Who like a Death Star seem at times to be almost universally loathed by the knowing for their questionable business practices. Starting from the never ending prices increases, while you feel like you're getting less and less all the way down the line to its CIA style secrecy, everybody seems to have some reason to gripe. BUT everyone including this author loves the miniatures and the IP so in spite of our armchair CEO expectations we all just keep on buying the Soylent Green.

In the end it is not a big surprise that GW pays no deference to its hobby veterans, so when one cranky old codger moves on to historicals or other game or leaves the GW branch of the Hobby altogether..the folks in Nottingham pay no mind as there are always 3 young faces to take that exiting veterans place. Such is life when you are "too big to fail" in a niche market.

Then along comes these guys.

At Adepticon this year Privateer Press did an amazing thing..not amazing from a business perspective (this type of promotion is as pretty common these days) , but amazing in this particular niche. Having been in their second year of attendance at what has been a decade old Games Workshop celebratory event. Privateer Press decided they would put a $50 retail Warmachine starter box in the first 1000 swag bags, Ponying up 50K in retail product is no small feat, and any more conservative GW bean counter would call it crazy, and Let me tell you what...they made it all back already, and some. Here's how.

First of Privateer Press did something GW hasnt done at Adepticon in as long as I remember. Shown up in force...I saw Jervis Johnson at Adepticon in 2007 since then the token celebrity has gone down the chain until last year we were left with a lame ass slide show from the regional manager talking up stuff that had been in White Dwarf for 6 months on Saturday Night when people want to go party. This year, other than Forge World showing up and making fools of themselves with their bungling...There wasn't a GW "suit" to be found. I find this particularly odd, given this event is primarily and had been totally about their they never really took advantage of that see paragraph 1.

Back to Privateer Press, who as I said showed up in force this year with staff, their best tables, said free product and plenty of people to run their games. They treated Adepticon like Gen Con or any other trade show/convention should be treated as a premier opportunity to expand their fan base and customers.

Let me back track here a second and say, I have never been a fan of Warmachine/ Hordes, its been on my radar forever. even since before I got back into the hobby in 07'. The Iron Kindgoms IP, just always seemed like bad D&D setting gone arwy...(in fact there is a similar D&D setting in its 3rd edition, not sure that was before or after). Anway the D&D meets Steampunk meets Anime oversized weapons has never did it for me, I like my " fantasy" "low" and "old school" I do like some steam punk "Arcanum" but the Iron Kingdoms IP just never clicked.

Compile the above with, the consideration that my number one WFB 7th ed compadre, Felix moved on to become a local PP Press Ganger here and that still didnt motivate me, mainly because ,except for himself, there is literally zero hobby community based around the game in our local meta. People seem content playing with bare metal models on green felt with piece of notebook paper as terrain and whatever else is laying around. This lack of interest in the hobby was game ending buzz kill if I ever saw one. However all along, I was hearing and reading that this was a very good tactical game, and while not a diceless system , the randomness of dice /vs your acquired skill was stacked in favor of the latter. So the game has the ring of actually being a game of skill, and not a game of luck. So I never totally wrote it off, it just became a "maybe one day", but seriously it was the last game, I ever thought I would get around to.

Well its looks like that one day has arrived. Thanks to Privateer Press good sense, myself and who can guess how many people got a look at there free box said "hey this is cool", I am going to try this, "what has GW done for lately other raise the price of a Specials 10 unit box to $45 with tax!" I personally got the Protectorate of Menoth Box in my swag bag, but since I am about done with playing religious zealots, (thanks Sigmar) I was lucky enough to trade with someone for the Cryx box, I like the undead, and we've got undead Pirates, so whats not to like?...I dont have to like the other stuff I am killing, that's the point..In all seriousness, there is plenty I do like in the Cryx and Mercenary Ranges...So I am sold, not to mention the new edition was publicly playtested with fan input so ruleswise that can only be a good thing.

On the hobby side. I know I am not alone in my previous opinion, but of course a quick visit to the PP forums or its No Quarter Magazine and you can find some great stuff on hobby side, not quite at GW levels as a player percentage. but its definitely getting there. The final kicker for me was I know a half dozen + guys up here who are kick ass hobbyists all expressing interest in the game. If you start seeing these guys playing in Chicago land then all of sudden the hobby meta for Warmachine/ Hordes in this area has seriously changed. Because when no one paints, then no one paints..when one guy shows up really painted well, it inspires a couple others to paint, when a half dozen guys are slugging out for best painted, well - its contagious like that. Same goes for terrain and tables.

Anyway..I was motivated enough to try to purchase some additional models (because I am a miniature drug addict) thru my partnership at Cipher Games and quickly was told tons of Warmachine stuff is now sold out?, go figure. My GW collection is probably 5 figures in value on the retail side .IF of those 1000 boxes PP gave away at Adepticon yields a 1% return in the player base on a level such as paid for all those 1000 boxes retail. The business lesson here is obvious. You need to invest in your customers, if you want them to invest in you. Are you listening Games Workshop?

While I'm in no more than planning/modeling stage right now DO expect to see painted Warmachine here on this blog in the near future whether I ever get past the handful of models and some cool terrain for a game or two who knows? (It not lost on me that WM/H is a "type A" game") The tournament organization and scenarios have also impressed me, so maybe even an event of two. I just wanted to add as I have said many times here before, You have a choice who you do business with "Too big to fail" doesnt mean "only game in town" Anyway I just wanted to give Privateer Press a shout out for doing the smart thing, probably getting themselves a whole bunch of eager new players, and changing one occasionally grumpy venerable gamers mind (that'd be me) ..about a game I thought I'd made up my mind about.

Hey, maybe I get to play Felix again? cool.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

High Seas Alert!

So we kicked off the new Campaign last night, 6 players, 9 games, a debaucherous time had by all. If you're interested in the details please see my Legends of the High Seas Campaign Blog
Also consider joining our Forums if you want details on its mechanics. On the hobby goodness side please check out the Legends of the High Seas Gallery also linked on the left side bar...over 125 photos of Campaign, Terrain projects, Crews and unreleased pics from Adepticon. I have more coming...Good time round here to be a Pirate.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Blood and Glory

Viggo as the lead in while I talk about WFB?, Heresy you say?, no way..he is still the King in my book.

The post Adepticon hangover is gone and find myself back toiling away late night in basement, while I'm working on stuff for our upcoming Legends of the High Seas campaign, I am finding myself still preoccupied with my most fickle of muses. Warhammer Fantasy Battles.

You've read my gripes about the book scenarios before, and I spent the other night going the rules a bit. I am admittedly nowhere near where I need to be mentally for playing in competitive events if I actually have an intent of winning any games. In fact I have been getting a big kick of my friend James "rule of the day" over at his blog The Big House. because he keeps posting stuff that seems so obvious I should know, but I don't -so I keep kicking myself in ass trying to my head in game so to speak, so I spent some time digging into the rule book.

The book scenarios themselves are ok, for the big dumb fun of the "more, more, more" approach of 8th edition . (I tend to be a "less is more" kind of guy hence the conflict) The amount of work put into the narrative battles section of book clearly shows the designers arent particularly worried about us choosing to run tournaments with their game, as the "battle" scenarios we are using for events look like an after thought in comparison.

Beating the old drum again, let me rehash that from my perspective the problems with tournament scene and 8th edition is that we're still using 7th edition scoring for what is clearly a different game. The book scenarios are not meant for tournament play that is going to sort out a winner by straight up battle points. That's clear to me, but I guess not so much to the people I know that run events around these parts. Its way too easy for these scenarios incidentally give one player an advantage, that and the silly randomness of events from terrain on down to the games overall reliance on dice rolls..seriously just makes the whole thing a skill- less crap shoot. Now, Of course you can bone up on the rules, study up on every contingency of every army and put yourself in a place to minimize that dice crap shoot and that is what the best players do. However one scenario in the book is perfect for fixing the whole damn scoring issue and putting things back on track and its coincidentally the most controversial of the scenarios used at Adepticon this year: Blood and Glory.

Blood and Glory isnt just a scenario, (as people not preparing for it "going in" to the event led to the problems at Adepticon this year) its a tournament "model" -the perfect measure of how games should be scored and played in 8th. It bears direct similarity to WAB's Army break point system, which I've previously mentioned as a favored scoring solution of mine.However we did some demoing with it and it worked ok, except both games ended before either of us broke, so the WAB rules just revert back to victory good in theory but not so much in practice.

For those unfamiliar, Blood and Glory is based on every army having a fortitude score based on your Armies General (2 points) plus 1 point for each banner of the field including the battle standard. Your army breaks, and the game ends when you armies fortitude drops to "x". "X" depending on the size of the game. In WFB tourney play..I'd suggest keeping the break point a "2" (the level for 2000 point games) instead of the "3" used at Adepticon this year. Because at 2200-2400 "2" still seems very fair..over 2500 points, It would go to a break point of "3" and it works up per 1000 points of game size from there.

Your average player in today's game should be showing up on the field with an average fortitude of "6", a General, a BSB and 3 Unit Standards..a couple more if you have the points. If neither opponent breaks the others army in six turns, the game is a draw with no other tie breaker.

These "Blood and Glory" rules would have the following postive effects on the meta game for 8th edition. No incentive to build "death stars" or massive horde units.A Death Stars maxium fortitude will be "4" (General, BSB, 1 unit Standard) Yes it might be nigh unbreakable, but you can't just sit in the back corner of the table and say "come get me"...because you're setting yourself up for a draw and if you just sit there let yourself get warmachined to risk losing the game on bad panic check. Massive units which are currently used to keep wads of points on the table become an unnecessary points sink because once the unit breaks, its done as its lost is standard and its a scoring unit, unless it rallies and captures it back. No more lone Chaos Warrior or Temple Guardsmen keeping 800 points on the table alone, while fleeing at the end of the game. Fodder units become exactly that..with no standard they aren't scoring so a different tactical measure becomes apparent. With Objectives on the table for additional Battle Points for "Best General" I see two games going the field at one time, the battle for the win between scoring units and the battle for objectives between everything you cross-use you units to get both becomes something a hell of alot more tactical than the gimmicky quirks of current play. Finally with a fortitude of only "2" your General can't "Herohammer" the game by himself without at least on other unit standard on the field..this is a very good thing.
(And No, I dont think the Slaan should get the extra point for being a BSB...he can be the BSB but you don't get the extra Fortitude point, you need a another model for that)

So, Pitched Battles with Objectives, "Blood and Glory" rules...that's how you roll with good 8th ed tournament in my book, your scoring is Battle Points 15/5/10 win/lose/draw + objective points + Sports (or Favorite opponent in my world) + Paint.

Some will inevitably ask "But John, What about bonus battle points?"

Bonus battle points are crap,normally contingent on whatever quirky fluke gets dictated by the parameters of the half-assed scenario the TO probably hasn't play tested more than once. Objective points are tactical capture..meaning you need to go out win them if you want them. Bonus Battle points are usually a freebie given to the winner by default or based on luck/ 8th edition is already way to based on luck to begin with, cutting it down and giving away less free points makes for a better tournament.

But John, Wont "Blood and Glory" rules produce alot of Draws?

They will, however considering Draws have gone from 1 out of 5 games (roughly 20%)in 7th edition to 1 out of 25 games in 8th edition (roughly >1%) with the change from 300 victory point margin to a 100 victory point margin, I think a happy medium of 10% or so is fine, people generally play to win, and a draw will become the self policing result or either a very good game, or someone just playing point denial under Blood and Glory, playing for draw might put you high in the standings if you have the soft scores to back it up but you still need to win games to win the tournament. A personal example: at this point I've played maybe 36 or so games of 8th edition I've had only two in the Team Tournament, which was literally to the point and the result of good luck turn 6 otherwise we had lost. The other was in the Blood and Glory scenario.

While I think its going to take the rest of season, having players "bum out" or just leave the game over lousy tournament experiences before mass self correction starts taking place, I already see positive signs of hope, One of our new local tourneys Blood in the Sun has publicly stated that "Blood and Glory" rules will be used for at least several of the scenarios this year and people best design there armies around it. While not the "full on" approach I lay out above..its a strong start and I am some of my Tuesday night regulars are attending this event in July, I'll let you know how it goes!.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Fail World

Oh Forge World, how did I love thee?, Let me count the ways!

Summer 2008- @ Games Day Chicago, I ask the gentleman behind the rapidly growing line if they have the Empire Cannon emplacements? he says."sure do" we a have bunch. After waiting in line 90 mins...I find out, they are sold out..I ask"you sold them all in last 90 mins, while I was in line? it looked like 40K central to me?, No. he responds..we sold them all yesterday to the Fantasy players when we opened the store for the GT (this year the GT started the day before gamesday and was a 2 day event) OOOF.....buuut the guy told me you had them..I griped..."we did yesterday" also I should mention all the convention exclusives sold out too, its was 11:30 am at Games Day. I never got that 90 mins of my life back...but they offered me free shipping!

November 2008- Mail Order - I order a bunch of Space Marine bitz and vehicle parts. The package never arrives after about 5-6 weeks of waiting they reship. When the order finally arrives. Items are missing from the order, they say "no worries" we'll ship you the missing bitz for free! when I finally get the reship, in late Febuary 2009..I've lost interest in 40K.

Spring 2009 Mail Order-I order the Great Unclean One to compliment my rapidly growing Daemon Army, on sale at the time for 80 pounds with a great US/UK conversion rate. I bite the apple again, although stupidly I decided to use my debit card instead of a credit card. Forge World somehows enters an extra "Zero" and charges my bank account $800 Pounds not 80 which almost causes me to bounce my mortgage but I thankfully caught it in time. the overcharge is summarily corrected, they were very apologetic and offered me Free Shipping on the model. (credited me back shipping costs with my extra money ) Warning: never use a debit card to buy anything online..dont know what I was thinking there

Summer 2009- Games Day Chicago- somehow new pieces people are salivating for dont make it to Games Day in time, all those new Daemon Sculpts and whatever else people were waiting for doesnt make it to the show but are available in limited quantities..massive line..tons of unhappy people. Thankfully I had nothing to with this other than witness it and feel sorry for people that waited two hours for new Khorne Daemon Prince and Herald only to find out they didnt have it.

Spring 2011- Adepticon. Warhammer Forge. Knowing my own relationship with Forge World.I write in to order the Theo Bruckman on Demi Gryph model. I get a confirmation # and reserve order number from Forge World. I bring this print out with me to Adepticon.The day starts out with a bang when I get downstairs to lobby at 8am the line for the Forge World store is easily 150 people long. the line builds to over 200 but the time the open the doors. when they do..they also open the partition between the main ballroom and the store so people rush to Forge World from the other side...thereby screwing everyone who waited in line for 2 hours. Convention exclusives sold out quick many of those folks who thought they were covered getting out at 8am, got hosed..if you've been to a Forge World booth before you know what they do. They hand you and order sheet, and say "well give you Free Shipping".

Seeing this debacle I decide to wait until Saturday to go pick up my model, after round 1 of the WFB championships..I rush over to the Forge World booth and find only a dozen people in line..I jump in and it still takes me 20 mins to move up to where they can see me. Once I am only two or three people back. the Forge World guy sees me with a piece of paper in my hand and says quote " He knows what he wants and how to do it, this gentleman here has wisely pre-ordered his model!" he takes my paper and goes back to get..but cant seem to find it...(I think to myself this cant really happen, can it?) he keeps looking comes back to me red faced and says dont worry it has to be here..I'll find it...10 mins later...he still cant find it. Now its 5 mins before round 2, I'm like I have to go..I'll come back later..he's like " I'm sure I'll find it". I come back right before they close for the evening...I find the same guy..he remembers me and says "sorry guy, its not here..I dont know what happened" he shoves an order sheet at me and says. "Fill this out pay the guy over there and you'll get Free Shipping" I just walk away in disgust.

Monday morning after Adepticon I write a letter to Forge World explaining what happened and also detailing my history with the company. I ask them what they'd like to do about it..and dont ask for anything specific. Today, a week later, I get a response. "well I talked to all involved and we think the best course of action is to give you Free Shipping" "But you'll have to call in because if you order it thru the webcart we can't remove the call us and we will take care of you". That's it. No apology, No, what can we do for you to make this right?, no grand overture of perhaps a discount is warranted?? Considering the time of mine they've wasted is worth far more than all FW stuff I own combined-any of these seem like small gestures..but nope, nada.

Well dear can take your "free shipping" and stuff it straight up your arse. Despite your litany of epic screw ups in my short history with you, I have always made positive note (both privately and publicly) of your strong customer service in liu of these shortcomings. NO MORE, Free Shipping is not a customer service panacea for your inability to have even the most basic skills in running a retail company. If you were selling anything else other than boutique models with a fanatical high demand. you would have been out of business ages ago. So it is with much disgust I bid farewell to your company and hope that others whom currently support you have the common sense to come to the same conclusion as quickly as possible.

Storm of Magic

The Winds of Magic are tumultuous. Drawn by Morrslieb, they are prone to rise from a strong gale into a howling tempest.And when they do, no kingdom or realm is safe. Monsters awaken from their slumber and are summoned from their lairs at the bidding of sorcerous masters. Armies assemble, ready to defend their borders or seize the opportunity to gain limitless power. It is in these desperate times tenuous pacts between wizards and creatures of darkness are sealed to create alliances never thought possible...

Prepare for battles ravaged with powerful magic and a host of fearsome monsters: Storm of Magic is the brand-new world-shattering Expansion for Warhammer. Launched in July 2011, Storm of Magic, along with a new range of Warhammer scenery and Wizards, will enable you to wage immense and spectacular battles. Head on over to the Astronomican on for more information, as well as a sneak peek of what's to come...

Can't say I am looking forward to this...More Magic?, More Monsters?, can we just get rid of troops altogether and fight with wizards and monsters?, That seems to be the ridiculous path GW is on with 8th Edition Warhammer. Now, have no idea what the details are but considering Magic and Monsters are the most broken, stupid elements of the new edition, this cant be a good thing. The only bright side is there will probably be some cool models to collect. Good luck to TO's out there who know have to take grief over banning "Storm of magic" rules and lists, from events another repeat of the "Storm of chaos" crap pile, I think...SIGH. how about updating the other army books first guys??

Friday, April 8, 2011

Adepticon 2011 WFB Team Tourney

After a big night out in the hotel bar with a great group of Warhammer players Saturday night, my Teammate Jeff and I got up really early Sunday for the WFB Team Tournament. Team Tourneys are the staple of Adepticon, and its traditionally been the building block of the whole convention. Now personally, outside the rabid popularity of the 40K TT, I think the Fantasy TT, in its spirit and intent. (a fun team event in which people build there teams, in design and look and fluff) has apexed recently and with the advent of 8th edition, tradition has left the building. I saw very few "built for the event armies" and it seemed to have boiled down to two guys putting the hardest stuff they could on table from two different armies, with the caveat of no Lords. Knowing how the 8th edition meta game was, we followed suit throwing the most bang for the buck we could into Two 1000 points armies of Empire and Bretonnians. We ran the same thing last year, I think 7th edition was definitely more our element we lost the first game on a fluke, and won the next two readily. This year, we both had a black cloud over our heads from both our personal let downs in the Championship.

First round we played Dark Elves and Orcs and Goblins, a tough match. after taking a big lead. Things went sideways on us when Jeff's BSB failed his save from a killing blow, he lost a rank and a big unit of goblins became steadfast. This put us on a crash course for numerous stuff to go wrong, and we ended up losing. This was a great game no doubt.

Round 2 m we took on Empire and Warriors of Chaos, in a desperate alliance, very difficult to run a desperate alliance because of the way the magic works. Again we started out big but again, one of those combats you take for granted, is were things went horribly wrong and we ended up upside down. By turn 4 the Empire side of our army was totally wiped out, except for my wizard., Jeff had just his General and some Peg Knights remaining. a strong turn 6 got us back in it by finish off a unit of Chaos Warriors MoZ, that were plaguing us all game. In the end its was Draw almost to the point.

Our third match was against Lizardmen and High Elves..a fun game, I kept waiting for something to go wrong but it didn't. we had control of the whole game, and our opponents had some pretty bad luck and made a couple decisions, they probably shouldnt have, they were pretty tabled, and we didnt even take our last turn.
So there you go, it took me 7 games of Warhammer to finally win one this year. pretty brutal. I need to say once again we had awesome opponents in all three of team games and I'd go as far to say as my group of combined opponents this year, was the best I've had ever!. So while I might whine about my bad luck, its not really that bad, because I did get to play and meet some great people so cheers to them and at 1 win, 1 loss, and 1 draw we wrapped the 2011 Team tourney.

Where the Team Tourney falls behind for me is in the scoring, at a whopping 71 teams, there were more bodies than already mention Championships that were the largest to date I'm not quite sure how to properly sort out 71 teams with only 3 games and find a fair winner given the context of the what event is "supposed to be" and what it really "is". Scoring wise- points were awarded to the whole package, so despite no comp scoring you got big points for your fluff and display, so really need to win all three games, and have the big soft scores to win. However I didnt really see people meeting the challenge, Even we didnt bother to present any fluff and got tagged 15 points on our soft score (putting us at 23rd overall despite a respectable battlepoint score and max sports and 24 out of 25 for paint).

I had a really hard time finding that one team or display that put the stand alone work into their army and display and make this event their focus this year. The army one that won, "Players Choice", was the one, I and I am sure many others voted for and they did a great job, however it would not have even made the radar if you go back a couple years.

My point being is I see confusion here in what this event is supposed to be and whats it become. Events need to change along with game, and just like Adepticon has grown and changed so do these events. is the team tourney going to be a beer and pretzels sunday good time based on the hobby with tons of folk working on unique displays for the glory of Warhamer? or is going to be a standard competitive event?..I don't think you can it both ways...or at least it didnt play out that way. I'm not sure there is that even huge an audience there any more for the former.
Overall thou had a good time this day, hanging out with a friend and throwing some dice with some fun people, but as I look back on it I just kind of find myself ambivalent about the whole thing, "lackluster" is the word that keeps coming to mind as I try to describe the WFB TT. Me thinks Its time for a reboot.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Adepticon 2011- WFB Championships

Adepticon -2011 Warhammer Fantasy Championships

Well, no huge write up this year. Unfortunately this is just never my event for a variety of reasons, This year my crappy play it is 100% directed me being woefully unprepared for 8th edition at a competitive level such as this. While my army looked good on paper it wasn't so good in practice. That and some seriously comical luck brought me a whopping 0-3-1 finish playing my 4th game on the last table..that's a first for me.

all these pics are just things I liked. some amazing, some solid, just a fun random army sample.

On the good side, all 4 my opponents Derek, Lance, Brad and Mike were righteous dudes and using my usual personal scoring of Fun, Sports, and Comp all these guys were 5/5/5 (5 being Max). Sometimes the black cloud just follows you, after the ridiculous end of my second game..I just gave up started drinking and went along for ride and had a good time. I did find out later I was tied with 5 other guys for best sportsman and my soft scores were maxed so despite my miserable record..I still finished pretty good considering my record,

My Games broke down like this:

Game 1 Vs Lizards- Slann w/ huge temple guard Bunker, Scar Vet, huge Saurus Bunker, 4 Sallies in 2 units and a bunch of Skinks filling out the rest. I had the Flaggies in the front and Stank in the Flank of the Slann/ Tguard and couldn't bust them, if you cant do that, thats all Empires got, not being able to break either bunker left all the points on the table and I lost on points..fair enough. 0-1

Game 2 vs O&G - Well rounded list, 6 warmachines was only hard first turn, after that three were done, I was up most of this game until "boxcars" on an overrun after taking down a big unit of savage orcs put my General and Wizard's unit exposed flank to a horde unit of biguns with double choppers and a killy BSB. IF I had rolled a even an "11" I would have been ok, I had set up for a Front and Flank Charge with my Flaggies. the worst dice roll possible at the worst time started a chain reaction that caused my whole army to fold. bummer 0-2

Game 3 Vs High Elves- I started hitting the jack and cokes with my opponent and new buddy Brad, I killed his General and one of his Wizards early and thought it was an easy victory, however even shot up Swordmasters in 8th are filthy and hot dice streak had them and his White Lions rip me a proverbial new one..a big Searing Doom took the stank out. and I was basically tabled with only my Wizard on the table at the end of the game and he still had the Lions and Swordmasters. Pretty good for losing your General turn 2.

Game 4 Vs High Elves- A bit better prepared for 8th ed High Elves, The Empire came out angry, I took mike to the proverbial woodshed early on except this game I grossly under estimated the power of the Phoenix Guard..I thought the Steam Tank could take them down solo, but no way. I put it into them on my turn one, and by turn 5 its was dead and I had only killed about about half of them. This was the Banner/ Fortitude scenario. After I got two banners early, I only needed one and that left the Swordmasters or the Phoenix Guard, I brought my Knights back to give the PG another crack but they didnt budge there either after a ferocious charge. Mike wisely put his Swordmasters into the building on his last turn knowing on my last licks..I would have them in Front/Rear/ Flank sandwich if he stayed outside still no guarantee but a good chance. Knights had another chance at PG..couldn't do ends.

Like I said thou, all these games where great fun, outside comical dice rolling and my opponents were all fantastic.

On the downside, I seriously hate all the book scenarios. The only one I like is the Banner/Fortitude one and that is the one you will inevitably hear the most griping about. For me, Pitched Battles with objectives is the only way to go for a tournament.

There weresome organizational /scoring issues this year, No slight on the man running things this year- Alex G, as he does and awesome job and I think this was the biggest Warhammer single day tourney to date with 140 players, so a huge challenge. There we some bad apples in extra staff department that caused some problems with the paint judging. I did paint scoring on Friday for the big brawl, so I know the system, it requires you examining a persons army set up on its display and closely looking at the models to in order to correctly go thru the checklist. There were two judges during round 1 trying to score peoples armies while their game was going on, which was complete idiocy. As a result the guy who won Player Appearance- Tourney Choice got a whopping "14" out 25 for his paint score..and my own army..which has never had gotten less than a max score here, got a "zero" for display base base was under the table when they judged my army, go figure right? anyway this garbage got called out and these paint scores were corrected..and if this was the worst thing that went on a tourney this big...I'd call it a a success. I'm going to bone up on 8th ed with Empire and give it one more go at the local "Blood in the Sun" here in July and see if I can un-embarrass myself. In the end however, I'm not sure I'll back for the Championships next year because after 5 years...this is never a great day for me and there is just too much to do at Adepticon now and I'd rather do other stuff and its not like they need the players. My Empire needs a rest, "if" I have another army that can compete..I may change my mind. No commitments.

Next up, the Team Tourney.

Edit: In a bit of self congratulatory back slapping, in order to put a counterweight against my absolutely terrible game performance. I wanted to point out, was the only player out of 134 who had max sports and max paint..that's at least 4 events in the last 3 years I have maxed out as the "soft score whore"., If I could actually win some games, look out!

Adepticon 2011- Legends of the High Seas

Picking things up here from the last round of pictures, this Friday night at Adepticon 2011, my Legends of the High Seas event. I could not have asked for 8 better players to sign up, this thing was blast on numerous levels, from the Pirate hats, to the ton of different quality rums, to great variety of miniatures and fantastic paint jobs on all of them. I think this was definitely the highlight of weekend for most of us and It makes me look forward to the club campaign we are starting later this month and future LotHS events. I'll leave it there with some pictures from the event. Next Post, I'll pick things up Adepticon Saturday with my WFB coverage.

The Pirate Castle, for my "Raise the flag" scenario

Jungle Run- Interesting how others decided to play this, different from our test group
guys were literally battling it out, inside the Jolly boat on the beach!...LOL

This Mordheim table has made the rounds for various games at Adepticon for years now. I added The Dock cast the from Hirst molds and the tower and of course the Ship. and it became table Five, so we had a scenario we could swap in and out...Everyone want to play it thou. I'm going to build something similar with traditional buildings...sooner than later.

my use of a blind group mechanic or "space hulk" style blip system on the dungeon board has
gotten overwhelmingly positive reviews.

Tavern Fight, this crew of all pirate wenches, demanded the fight take place outside the bar.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Adepticon- Day One- Live Pics

lets start out with some Crystal Brush entries. this piece on a motorized rotating base pretty much says it all, if you cant hang with big shouldn't bother. the best miniature painters in the world are here looking for 10K..

Cool Mini or Not booth..its pretty over the top in quality stuff, not cheap either.

My man Rich doing his Hirst Art Seminar

Some guys set up the mini painting service in the hall, really great stuff
I'll make sure to catch their name later

I played the ringer in the LotR Championships rounds 1 and 2, just a couple pics

Some of my WFB TT tourney partners Jeff's epic Daemons, I love them
almost makes me want to play my DoC, almost.

WFB Ballroom- Two tourneys going Simultaneously, I did some paint judging for the big brawl

Tons going on, too much to go into here, so I will try to update later. Aparently Forge World is giving themselves a bad rap again..sigh..going to try to pick up the new Empire model in abit, my event starts in about an hour.


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