Friday, July 31, 2015

Some Updates and Apocalypse Game

So I've said in the past few posts that I haven't been slacking on my painting and I've finally gotten some pictures for you and a small report about an apocalypse game I got to participate in.

First up some of my finished Drop Zone Commander...
Lifthawk transport. I have two of these from the starter box.

Kraken transport with its three Jackson troop transports. I think it's cool that the models for the troop transports fit into their transport so well. The door also swings down but not that well. 

Gun Wagons (AA guns) and two Hannibal tanks. The Hannibal's are beasts but they basically have to sit still to fire. Which is probably going to be okay with their excellent armor and line of sight weaponry. 

I have the infantry done now although you can see the underway in the back ground of the pictures. I am not sure if I'll like DZC or not but a group of us are getting together to play it at the end of August so i'll know then. I like this scale, mostly because I think it's really easy to paint. The Resistance on their web site has a lot more color than mine but I wanted to go for something a little more muted. I will give Hawk Wargames one big thumbs up on their flying bases doohicky that you glue to the model and fits snugly into the stand for easy transport. Well done!

Last weekend I got to participate in an Apocalypse game of 40K. We only got through two turns but that was because we had too many players and it slowed the game too much, which was a shame, it was a good game.
The table before the set up. 

Do you see that old old Warhound Titan at the top of the picture?

It was and Imperial force (Dark Angels x3, Imperial Guard, and lots of super heavies) against aliens and chaos (Daemons, Eldar, Necrons). The Imperial side had a lot of super heavies but the necron side had a lot of things to strip those hull points away. Also we had a Wraith Knight was a D strength melee weapon that was to be feared. Of course the Imperials had all these huge templates they dropped and a ton of terminators to deep strike in. Over all it was shaping up to be an epic conflict.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Warhammer Fantasy Battles is Dead, Long Live Warhammer Fantasy Battles!!!

You've read all the stuff about Age of Sigmar I am sure. I'm not going to rehash it or give you my opinion on it. Instead I'm going to post about love of something wonderful, and that is rank and file blocks of fantasy infantry marching to war. Obviously this has been removed from Games Workshop fantasy gaming completely. I think this is bad even though I understand the financial reasoning behind it I would have rather that the support for the game was reduced rather than the game be thrown away in exchange for another skirmish game.

Fantasy war gaming, in general, is based off from historical reality. Even the earliest records of war indicates the use of ranks and files on the battle field. Some will point out that there is also record of skirmishing units of troops, which is true, or they will point out that the ranks and files did not truly hold once battle was engaged I would heartily agree with. I would in return point out to them that they don't understand what war gaming conventions are or why we play the way we do and then move on.

Warhammer Fantasy Battles was truly the last rank and file fantasy war game. All other have been lost. I know people will wag their finer at me and point that finger over to Mantic's Kings of War but this is not so. Kings of War is a fine game, not one I play, but a fine game. It lends itself beautifully to easy game play, fields of fantastic troops, and epic conflict. It is not a rank and file game though. The many miniatures placed onto the movement tray or in some cases directly modeled onto the movement tray are not individually removed. The entire unit is treated as a single entity and remains or leaves as a single entity. You could just as well place 15 models to represent a unit of 20 or even a single card board tent with a picture on it. This would facilitate the game just fine and in no way affect play so long as the movement base/tray was the appropriate size.

This is fine, it is a good game, I do not mean this as a criticism I simple mean this as an observation and clarification.

The essence of rank and file war gaming is the pace it sets and the ebb of the armies on the table. Added to this essence is the complexity that the fantastic would bring to the game. It is a sad loss that our gaming community clamors for the simpler and quicker rather than engaging in an enjoyable duel of generals over the course of an evening. Historical war gaming fathered this structure and through the years it has proven to be a good structure. Warhammer was the by word for fantasy war gaming because it intelligently based itself off from the historical predecessors and engaged the players on a greater level than many games do today.

We have lost our espirt de corps you might say. As a community we look towards games that complete quicker and give us gimmicks we can utilize to find victory rather than out think and out flank our opponent. We want to play our two or three model/card combo and immediately have the advantage.

Rank and file war gaming does not have this aspect truly. It relies on good maneuver, good planning, and a good measure of fortune. Even the best laid plans can be lain low by a bout of 1's on the dice and even the most outnumbered regiment can hold their own with a good run of 6's. Before anyone deducts the value of the dice I would point out historical battles such as Thermopylae and Agincourt  as examples where their may not have been dice but there was certainly a good measure of fortune. We can't recreate humanity and reality on the table, the dice do this for  us.

I don't plan to give up this style of war gaming. In fact just the opposite I plan to more actively engage it. Try to build a community for it within my community of gamers. I plan to fight the mental decay of simpler war gaming every way I can. Join me in this! Raise your regiments of models (carefully so they don't fall) and bring them to war with you.

On the model painting front I've been very busy but not been able to take pictures, sorry for that. I've gotten several commissions done from imperial assassins to men-at-arms including some 6mm DZC and several of my own units that I had primed for way too long. If I get the chance I'll take some crappy pictures. No promises though :(