Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Resolution, Smezolution.

Continuing the Escher theme, don't be like me, and let your resolutions be your stairway to nowhere.

There comes a certain point when you do the New Years Resolution thing, whatever they may be, that your continued failure will become comical, so comical that continuing to even do them is pointless outside of the potential comedy of your own failures. We have reached that point here at Plastic Legions my friends. Without further adieu here my recap of my 2010 resolutions and how I made out. I always list them from the supposed 'easiest" to accomplish to the most difficult so lets review in the same order.

2010 resolutions

#10 No more new games!!!...and I mean it Games Workshop..I'm not counting Board Games this year.

Not counting board games was a total cop out and I only bought one, but I failed none the less, I picked several skirmish type rule sets and bought a ton of 15mm sci fi well other generic fantasy figures for skirmish games and a entire metal WAB army. While I didnt buy much GW in 2010...I certainly bought more than I should when it came to the meeting the goal of the resolution- (cutting down the game budget.) I did coincidentally sell alot of stuff this year..but financially it wasn't close to a for the purpose of the actual point this was a FAILURE. Starting out with a bang, as you can see.

#9. Get my next WFB Army, painted to a level where it is competitive for Best Appearance and at least to 2250 with some options. Choices are WoC, Lizards and VC..I need to settle on one and do it. my goal here is ready by next fall, for all the fall events.

Oh boy, I am shocked how far I missed the mark here, well I did settle of Lizardmen and the ones I did are some of my best work however..I have ONE flipping model 100% finished, the rest of a unit of 15 Spearmen sitting about 60% complete and a Stegadon about done, other than the base, and crew. Of course, yes, my mixed feelings on 8th edition have put the brakes on this for various reasons. but once again Total abject FAILURE, 0-2 next.

#8 Finish my freaking Daemons, they are close..and I might run them at Adepticon in the WFB championship, given the way comp works this year...It's all about the paint..I could finish them in a couple weeks..if I just sit down and do it.

ROFLMAO!!!.....I did actually play one game with them this year, it was just this month. What comes after total abject Failure?, Epic total Failure?, I'm doing the backstroke in a pool of it here.

#7 Finish up a bunch of loose models for my Empire army...I want to bring a bunch of new models to Adepticon for the Warbands tourney this stuff is always good.

Shockingly this is one of the few things that did happen, I also added around dozen models to my empire infantry including the new Bear model as a place holder. I also made a bunch of really great wizards for the flexibility of using different Lores in 8th ed..even painted a couple of them.
Those models I did for Adepticon, ended up getting me Best Appearance in Warbands, so this one is an actual SUCCESS!,

#6 Get my act to together to get out of town for an overnight to one of the many great regional events here in my area. Midwest Rampage is the likely candidate.

Yeah this happened, and we had a great time that weekend, despite the bumps in the road at the actual event. The other event I had planned to attend was a total washout...1/2 aint bad when so far we are at 60% Failure rate so far.- Call this a Mild Success.

#5 Run another day long campaign event for Legend of the High Seas, play some Legends of the Old West..and play some more skirmish games, including LotR in general

Never got around to running another event, didn't play any Old West, did play as much Lord of the Rings as I could and some High Seas and tried to get some other Skirmish games going, and did play a few other games, but not as much as I would have liked. This ones a WASH, didn't really accomplish the point, but there was enough other going on, that I cant call it a failure.

# 4 Run a day long 6000 point Legendary WFB battle and my place with fully painted armys and with full bat reps and photos for the blog
Talked about it, cool idea, never happened. We did have an 8th Edition gaming tourney that was pretty cool, but its wasn't this...maybe one day FAILURE

#3 When the new WAB rules get some of the horde of models I have together and play some games..even promise to paint some!

Ummmm....NO, I didnt get some of that Horde of models together...I went I bought a whole new metal army from Gripping Beast (see #10)...which I did base and prime and even painted one test model. As for the purpose of the resolution, No I didnt do squat with the tons of models I have using the built ones as proxys and unbuilt sitting on shelves...I did play a half dozen games and really like for the intent of this resolution, I'd have to say to I FAILED.

#2 Finish my Osgilath table..too long in the making...the Hirst tiles are painfully slow due to my lack of making time to cast..the table itself is seeing alot of abuse and may need to be redone,This is my primary terrain project for 2010..and I am going to try very hard to limit myself to getting this done this year.

When I wrote this I must have drinking, and drinking heavily, probably Tequila- because I always do crazy shit when I drink Tequila. This entire project was scrapped- not finished to its imagined glory, it died on the operating table. The table itself with the beach got the resin water section damaged thru years putting this that weren't supposed to be on it, on it. the city tile idea wasn't working out, it also took some flood damage. Then GW goes and releases a bunch of specific awesome terrain, that doesn't really match that stuff I had finished. The table was broken down and its being re-purposed...alot of the terrain is in the "what to do with it" pile. I'd like to do a 2 x 2 battleboard of Osgilath like my Pirate Dungeon for some LotR skirmish..but when or "if" that happens who knows..I can say with a 100% certainty this project is KIA. so I'll stop talking about it. an unmitigated FAILURE, hey that's the word I was looking for earlier!.

# 1 OK, I have a Flames of War army sitting around in boxes (Brit Paratroopers) and all the rules books. Find the time to get this together and play a few games!

Lo and behold, the most difficult thing on the list, and the one I never really thought would not happen, happened., I did get a whole 1500 point army built, based and primed. I painted 3 tanks and am working on the 4th and painted another 4 stands to completion. I even played three games! and am starting to work on a small table...I did buy terrain and the new rulebooks (again see #10), have to say it is the biggest success on the list, that probably required the most work. a Total SUCCESS!

So how did I do?, a couple good successes, a kind of success and a wash...if I scored it like a tournament I be 3-6-1 where one of my wins was one those games where you won thru no fault of your own. On the actual Success meter however, I am at a whopping 20%!!!! an Epic Fail i'd say. The biggest lesson I've taken out of all this is that trying to guess, predict, or schedule what you're going to do in your hobby 12 months out just takes the fun out of it, or even can suck the life out of it, so don't even try. In fact the most fun I had and coolest thing i did last year came to me on a total whim one afternoon, It was also the most challenging terrain project for me to date.

Needless to say no formal resolutions for 2011 from me. believe me, its not lost on me that the majority of my failure has to do with the game I have the most time and money invested in. All I can say for 2011 is that I will strive to paint more of the stuff I already have, play more of the stuff I already have, and stop buying stuff I never end up playing, -lets see if I can even stick to that.


Monday, December 27, 2010

2010- Looking back

As 2010 comes to a close its time for my own annual "looking back" and resolution posts. As for looking back to 2010 it was again a good year for gaming. I had less "hobby time" than the past several years but gaming was in full swing with our weekly club going strong with 22 meetings 2010, with good attendance (4-5 regulars and another 2-3 semi regulars) close to our scheduled goal of 25 meetings. On top that there was Adepticon plus the handful of other events I played in, and a good amount of "one off" game days on Saturdays with a couple trips out to the Chicago Battle Bunker for scheduled pick up games with people I dont see too much. On the hobby front, (see my upcoming Resolutions post) things were not as optimistic...more and more time with my kids as they are getting older, plus work and a huge basement flood, some general hobbying malaise cut my overall hobby input down, I did pull off one rather big project (The Pirate Dungeon) but outside a couple dozen models and some minor terrain work, my painting output was very low compared to years past.

For whatever reasons, either the natural evolution as a wargamer or my ambivalence about WFB's 8th Edition, I found myself moving away from Games Workshops products into the world of smaller miniature manufactures, which are just great for the smaller skirmish games I found myself getting more and more interested in. I've also come to the realization that I just flat out prefer metal/pewter models over plastic. I grew up with lead models, and when I got back into the hobby I was of course impress with GW's plastics, but over time and hundreds and models later, unless its specific customization or a vehicle kit, etc. I dont have, or want to take time for all those fiddly plastics bits when its comes to large wargame armies. I realize its still specifically an important presentation feature of WFB but outside of that I resigned myself that I am done with plastics, with the variety and detail of all the new metals I see these days I just don't see the need.

The biggest change up for me was of course the release of GW's new 8th edition Warhammer Fantasy Ruleset. If you're bothering to read this at all you know I am a Fantasy guy and love Warhammer but the new edition hasn't really impressed me like I thought it would. Its great for a fun, casual game, but I feel its fallen short when its comes to tournament play, and tournament formats have just not adjusted to 8th Ed changes. GW's always stated they dont write rules for competitive gaming and true to their word, Competitively, its got alot to be desired. Those of us who love the social gathering of big tournament but loved the strong tactical focus I saw from the top players in 7th ed, are feeling a little short changed by the "horde philosophy" of the 8th ed. I say "Hordes" meaning, "Hordes of Dice", "Hordes of models being swept off the table" in addition to the new mandatory "Horde formations". Hordes aside, WFB 8th is still a plenty fun distraction and the social aspects of tournaments will still keep me playing in them thru 2011 no doubt, whether I actually double down and actually finish another WFB army to the quality of my Empire, who knows? Earlier in the year I wrote a piece called "The Chess analogy" where WFB 8th Ed was the antithesis of chess, but when its comes to Wargaming there is plenty out there to chew your teeth on in that middle ground between WFB and Chess, and that's where I find myself. Whether it be the new WAB rules very appealing to me, and just this month finally getting my feet wet with Flames of War. While both lack the pageantry of WFB I am finding both games very appealing on the tactical gaming level. Skirmish gaming be it Lord of the Rings, Legends of the High Seas or various smaller games out there be it my 15mm home brew or Ganesha games "Songs of" rules continued to keep my interested in 2010, with most of the new models I painted falling into that category.

While ones attention may wane, from this or that then on something else one thing that never falters is the fun and camaraderie of the hobby despite "where" or in "what" actual game your interests lie, so no regrets! here is to a great 2011 in gaming!!, I'll still be playing in championships for WFB at Adepticon as well as running the High Seas event on Friday and doing as much gaming on various systems as much as I can. Expect a few surprises out of me in the upcoming year, where I aim to shake things up in basement as much as possible. With hundreds of single miniatures, at least 4 unfinished armies and a bunch languishing incomplete terrain, I find each being its own roadway to parts unknown, and I'm just going to enjoy the ride.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Plastic Legions in Flames!!!

Game 1 vs Aaron Panzer Grenadiers, forgive the crude map, but its all I had time to whip up to illustrate how the Red Devils pulled this one off basically collapsing the defending flank and digging in so the tanks could capture the objective.

Flames of War, that is. So at the prodding of both my pals Aaron and Jason, and my new fascination with 15mm. I finally got my act together to put my FoW British Para Troopers together. Coinciding with the release of Battlefronts, new Late War D-Day books it was perfect timing. while I've got close to 1500 point assembled, I've played my 1st -two non-tutorial games, at 1000 points. Here is my current list at 1000 points right out the new Turning Tide Book.

1000 Pts - British Parachute Company
1 Company HQ
2 SMG team (command, 2iC)
2 PIAT team
1 Sniper

3 Parachute Platoons
1 HQ Section
1 Rifle/MG team
1 PIAT team
2 Rifle Squad
2 Rifle/MG team

1 Parachute Weapons Platoon
1 HQ Section
1 Rifle/MG team
1 Vickers HMG Squad
2 Vickers HMG
1 Parachute Mortar Platoon
1 HQ Section
1 Rifle team
1 Observer Rifle team
1 Mortar Section
2 ML 3" Mk II mortar (Smoke Bombardment)

1 DD Armoured Platoon
3 DD Sherman (Tow Hooks)
1 M3 75mm gun (Stabilizers; Smoke)
1 Co-ax MG
1 Hull MG (Hull Mounted)
1 Firefly VC (Tow Hooks)
1 OQF 17 pdr gun (No HE; Semi-indirect Fire)
1 Co-ax MG

Game 1 vs Panzer Grenadier company 1000 points
(not too well versed on the specifics of the German lists but its was something akin too)
4 Panzer IV's
2 Platoons of Grenadiers (3 Squad)
1 Weapons Platoon MG 42 (1 section)

Scenario was "Encounter."

It was just one of those games for Aaron, you can on the starting positions on the map I had more infantry and mortars on the board while just had a large platoon dug in around his command post, and the HMG platoon bunker up in the ruins. I slowly advanced my first platoon up to top of the forested hill. while 2nd Platoon brave MG42 fire to assault the ruins. I got lucky with Mortars and was inflicting serious pain, plus I put my Sniper out..I got lucky and killed one of the MG 42 squads early so I had face way less dice. my first reserve in was my HMG platoon, they came in the middle, and didnt do much but advance. The german first reserve was a smaller platoon, but Aaron forgot about my observer and they got mortared bad and pinned down. my second reserve was another platoon, that came on where I wanted them and double timed it toward the ruins as well. The German second Reserve were the 4 Panzer IV's who went straight for my mortars who were just pounding the German infantry. Aaron has some bad dice and came up empty, The infantry units continued to slug it out the entire MG 42 platoon getting wiped, the pinned down platoon getting shot up and breaking. Last reserves where my Firefly and Shermans..who came in right where the Panzers where..I was able to easily move my Firefly and one the Sherman to flanking positions plus I had 3 PIAT teams right there.. PIAT's bailed out one P-IV, and my Tanks destroyed the other 3, the last crew running off. Aaron brought on his last reserve platoon to surround my Objective and started moving the 1st platoon over..but it was too late. My next turn I rolled my tanks up on my Objective..and his third platoon, and shot him up bad,while hitting the moving platoon with HMG fire, Mortars, etc. Not a good day for the Germans, I must say thou -Aaron dice were hating him.

Game 2 Vs Panzer Company 1000 points
8 Panzer IV (HQ , 2iC)
1 Support Platoon with Flamethrower.

Scenario was "Breakthough

Next up I played another Panzer Company this time, 8 Panzer IV's and 1 Platoon with a Flame thrower unit. ".a similar map with two hills in the same location as the first game with the ruins in the opposite quarter and tree's where the ruins where first game. I had all my troop on the board in two opposite quarters...while Jason had 5 Tanks and his infantry platoon on the table..with 3 Panzer IV's in reserve. The 5 Panzer's IV rolled up on two of my Platoons surrounding the one of the hills.and I had one wiped to the last stand right there, my other fell back into the ruins, with my weapon teams falling back to the hill. My Mortars where totally ineffective this game. but my Third Platoon moved and dug into the forest in the German table quarter where the objective was and waited for his reserves to come in. The flamer thrower team, missed the mark (I got real lucky there) and I had my guys assault the Germans which went pretty well, it was back and forth type thing, where even HMG fire and my Sniper I just couldn't out the last two stands out of the ruins...but I kept that platoon alive in there as well. The 5 Panzer IV's came around behind the hill with the Weapons teams were killing a command and PIAT team. but I got lucky and popped one Panzer with my Firefly from max range soon after and brought my other tanks out of cover. German Reserve Panzers then came in and Assaulted my guys in the forest..he killed two teams but I had two PIAT teams in there and with Tank assault 3, my Counter assault attack destroyed all three Panzers. Then it was a straight out long range tank battle...4 vs 4..I got lucky and Jason missed his shot or or I saved them...Jason not so lucky I popped two more Panzers on my turn, and Jason failed his motivation test to stick around and the last tanks left the field. it beginners luck and I am sure these guys were taking it easy on me the FoW noob but I really am digging this game and will continue to keep playing it, I am already working on my own Terrain look for more Flames of War here at Plastic Legions.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Adepticon High Seas Rules Posted

The Tavern show here is one of the many great boards where you can vicariously get your "Pirate on" at Adepticon this coming spring.

The rules for the Adepticon 2011, Legend of the High Seas event have been posted over at The Spanish Main campaign blog. While not on the Adepticon site yet, they've been submitted and should be up in short order. If you are registered for the event and wish to comment please comment there or email me directly. These Rules are subject to change barring some unforeseen event. One notable change from the event description, and due to time constraints Friday event, the event is now four rounds instead of five. We've still got 3 tickets left so if you are interested
go on and register today!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

WFB -Daemons vs Empire Battle Recap

An older photo from my DoC in 2009, they haven't changed all that much remaining somewhat in a state of being unfinished.

Not a full bat rep and no real photos, but just interesting recap of a game I played last night. As previously mentioned I've been a bit of a WFB hiatus since October, but definitely had the itch to dive back in lately. My friend Jeff was over with his Empire horde style army, and I didnt feel like another Empire vs Empire match up, and I saw my dusty Daemons over on the shelf. I had not tried of game of 8th with DoC and it was all the motivation I needed to give it go. Oh how the mighty DoC have fallen! Out of Habit..I went with a 7th ed style list based on what models I have around..certainly wasnt optimal, but I thought could get the job done. heres how it went

Daemons of Chaos

Herald of Nurgle, Level 1 Wizard, BSB w/ Sunderin Banner, Staff of Nurgle

15 Bloodletters, FC , Skull Totem
15 Bloodletters, FC , Endless War
15 Daemonettes, FC Siren Standard
19 Plaguebearers FC Seeping Decay

4 Nurgling Bases
5 Fleshhounds
2 Bloodcrushers
2 Beasts of Nurgle

The Empire

General of Empire
Wizard Lord - L4 Lore of Life
Warrior Priest
Captain - BSB
Battle Wizard- L1 -Lore of Beasts
Master Engineer

60 Spearman
Detachment 30 Swordsman
Detachment 30 Swordsman
30 Flagellants
5 Pistoliers, Champ w/ Repeater Pistol

Great Cannon
Helbaster Volley Gun

Jeff didnt start playing Empire until 8th ed, so while his list seems unconventional from my perspective, it works for him. We played the Meeting Engagement. which has the diagonal deployment and only a 12' neutral zone, I had my Nurgle herald, with the Plague Bearers right across from the big block of Spearman, with Skull taker and 15 Letters off one Detachment, the other unit of Bloodletters was off the left of the other detachment with Nurglings in the woods directly across. My Daemonettes where there to soften up the Flaggies, and my Fleshounds and Bloodcrushers on one flank heading straight for his artillery and my 2 Beasts on the other, going after loose wizards...small units etc..

I knew combat would arrive quickly so I wanted my Daemons to punch thru one detachment early and get around to rear change the big block..Everything else I had was on the Flanks. The battle really boiled down to dice and not rolls, (while Jeff did have quite the hot streak) but the sheer number of dice that jeff massive units allowed.

Game Highlights

My flankers with Leadership 7, kept failing there leadership and were getting marched blocked, I was a turn or 3 late getting to the backfield, the Helblaster inflicted serious pain., wasted most of unit of Letters, and killed one of the bloodcrushers.

The Level 4 Wizard died in turn 2 or three due to miscast. the level 1 and priest still keep me on my toes with magic due to Daemons are insulated against offensive magic to an extent, but for buff magic I was reliant just on what ever dice I got with just a level 1

Skulltaker and crew ..ripped up one detachment, but overran off the board costing me a key turn to help out the engaged plaguebearers

Plaguebearers with just a regen only (no addtional ward in 8th remember) didn't save them from instability with big combat res's. My shit dice didnt help for kills, not a single poison. also I miscast my second attempt with Staff of Nurgle and it crumbled..only one Racid Visitation

Jeff's General has the Speculm, which is big pain in the butt...not to mention he managed to make a couple parry saves against killing blows.

Empire failed no Fear checks..with BSB redunancy.

Daemonettes did a great job of handling the Flaggies, while I died, I easily ate over 20..making the remaining ones manageable.

Locked in a challenge once with the Empire General with the Speculum, Skulltaker could not close the deal with Jeff making his parry save against killing blow on more than on Occasion..I made plenty of Saves as well considering the general with my strength was Strength 7.

The Spearmen horde simply put of too many dice against the single attack Bloodletters with a +5 static res, the Daemons didnt last long again instability checks, I was making plenty of checks at negative (below 0) combat resolutions.

Daemons were Massacred.

I'm not used to the Empire massacring 7th I won very few games against DoC and ones I did simply weren't massacres..while I had some bad luck, somethings are clear about DoC in 8th

-You need Tzeentch, more magic and magic defense against buffs is key.
-Nurgle isnt so durable any more
-Hordes of 30 are almost a must.
-Fleshhounds still rule but you need more than 5.
-Daemon Prince Caster definitely an option (in lieu Greater Daemon still not being allowed
in alot of events in these parts..) There is alot more but that all I have time for.

I'm finding the now handicapped Daemons alot more interesting now that they arent so over the top- something to think about. hats off to Jeff on a great, and fun game with lots of ups and downs.


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