Monday, September 21, 2015

Step 42: Spread thinly and unevenly for mixed results

It's only been a month!  That's not so bad.  Right?  Time goes by so quickly for me that it doesn't feel long at all, at least.

So accurate.
That said, I've mired myself deep in new projects (because the incomplete projects I was already mired in weren't enough), both in an effort to complete some things I should have wrapped up a long ass time ago and because buying new toys is fun.  I'm also in somewhat of a mad dash to finish a handful of the bigger, terrain-based projects so that I can store them appropriately during the impending construction in our basement at home coming up all-too-swiftly.

So... where to start?

GORKAMORKA


Nope, I haven't forgotten or abandoned my Diggas, I've just been focused on other projects.  GorkaMorka is a game that I play with people who have a passion for it that isn't "flavor of the week", so I know that I can easily play with any member the dedicated handful of players so long as we plan on it a few days ahead.  That said, my only model painted so far is my Digganob, but I've made a couple of acquisitions to accompany my mob.  I'll also be switching out the ork driving Cassandra to a digga; I intend to focus on them completely.

My diggas will have a van-themed fleet (as much as I can maintain, anyway... van models aren't common, surprisingly).  I managed to snag this sweet model made sometime back in the late 70's for my main trukk, and may just have to search for more of this exact one because it's a good size:

Stickers are optional... but I'm leaning towards keeping them.
I also picked up some cool cardstock terrain on the cheap in order to get working on a more custom fort for the diggas.  I'm not sure what the final shape of it will be, as I tend to incorporate ideas as I build rather than make a strict plan and stick to it, but I'm excited to get working on it.






ARENA REX



Arena Rex is a 32mm gladiator combat game.  Literally 1 to 5 models, maximum, per side.  And it has probably the most intriguing hand-to-hand combat system I've ever seen in a game... This game has the potential to be my favorite tabletop game, ever, if it pans out like it appears it will.

Now, that said, go look at this shit:  http://arenarex.com/

Did you go look?  No?  Well, you're crazy.

Arena Rex has the best resin models I've ever seen produced for a game (so discounting strictly display-quality statues).  And by that I mean both the best sculpts AND the best quality of miniatures.

More traditional style gladiators of the Ludus Magnus, with my favorite model in the game Micon the brawler on the right.


The Legio XIII, a military sponsored group of combatants.

Essentially Arena Rex is an alternate history type of setting, where Rome never lost.  Like, ever.  At anything.  Also, mythical creatures are a thing.  This allows for multiple "factions" of models, like those shown above as well as the Morituri (Egyptians, more or less) and the Zephyri (Native/Viking-esque), plus monsters like a wendigo or the gorgons.  There are no points when building forces, simply number of models.  

I've made a bit more progress since these pictures, but you'll see these again along with more when I do a whole post about this, but... without further ado, I present Ludus Bellicosorum Pugnax.

Yup, those are Playmobile toys.  Wait for it...
It has begun!
Look forward to much more about this; it's going to be my best piece of terrain to date, I'm confident.  The board is 4' on the long side, so it's a very usable piece.



INFINITY


Our local club, the 423rd OverMountain Guard. 


Man oh man, prepare for some pictures. 

Infinity has taken a hold on the local group, and it's been interesting to be a part of overall.  Infinity is one of those games I eyeballed  and picked up a few things on the cheap for years, and then when I first met up with Hoss in the local group sometime over a year ago, I actually got to start playing it.  It's one of those games that can be obscenely complicated, yet is built around a simple framework, and works best if played out with each player having objectives and scenarios they need to complete that are different than "kill moar dudes".  We managed to bring in a few others (though I'll give all the credit to Hoss, being the local fanboy for the game, as I often am whoring myself out to a different game system week to week if I'm able), and learned that some folks like Da Masta Cheef had already had forces in the past and might be convinced to dust them off and play.  Fast forward to present and we're currently in the middle of a "grow league", which is a league designed around bringing in new people and having them build up to a typical-sized 300 point army over the course of 5 rounds.  In theory (and mostly in practice) this is a great idea.  It's gotten a lot of people playing, and it will hopefully mean that a game of Infinity will be easy to schedule for the immediate future.

That said, there are elements that wear on me.

I'm not an overtly competitive guy.  My wife would contend otherwise, and she honestly wouldn't be wrong when it comes to real-life applications, but when I'm gaming I'm playing to have a good time and create cool stories.  I'm playing toys.  I mean sure, it's fun to win, but it's only fun to win if both players had a good time.  Building a ridiculous army list and stomping someone who doesn't have a chance to win isn't fun, for instance.

Now, like I said, the Infinity league has 5 rounds.  The first 4 of those rounds, however, are the mission type "Annihilation", where the only goals are to kill as much of the enemy as possible while keeping as much of your force alive as you can.  Sure, starting in round 3 you get to start using Classified Objective cards (basically 2 randomly selected side objectives your specialist troops can complete), but the main point of the game is still the same.  And frankly I'm bored of it.  Infinity is setting up crazy terrain and making interesting objectives involving hackers and engineers and dropships and d-charge explosives and... well it's a lot more than just setting up in a fortified position and rolling dice, hoping your rolls are better than the other player's.  And because of that, I'm not feeling excited to go play as much because it's lacking in unexpected elements. 

I'm also not as excited because the league is somewhat competitive.  What I mean by that is there are points allotted to each player based on the events of a game, and those points are tallied in a spreadsheet, and certain players in the league like to bring it up constantly.  "I scored this many, and now I'm in contention for the lead, and I got these achievements, blah blah blah."  And no, to stop your train of thought, I'm not losing and thus don't like it because I'm whining.  I'm actually very close to the top and could really have a chance to win if I gamed for it... but ugh.  That's exactly my problem with it.  Instead of everyone building cool armies around a theme or aesthetic that they like, some people are trying hard to game the system in order to get points.  I know most people don't care, but to me that shit is annoying.  We're not playing in a tournament, we're playing in a league designed to get interested gamers more invested in the game and to get the interest of completely new players.

ANYWAY!  Minor rant aside, I've been playing a lot of Infinity lately.  Lol.

Typical game table set up at the group.
Fear the Fiday!  Perspective shot from the enemy Nomads' POV, where the Fiday had been laying down some shotgun blasts.  The Nomads got him back, though, giving him probably the most glorious death of any of the league games so far!

The majority of my Haqqislam stuff... I need to get painting.

I think this is all of the rest of it, minus a couple of Nomad Alguaciles that I can use in one of my sectorial forces.

Work-in-progress on my Janissary Fireteam, based on a pretty obvious theme.  ;)  The green one is actually a Nomad Mobile Brigada that can be included in the sectorial, so it made sense that he be the green "outsider" to the main team, but is still basically equivalent in capability.

My first finish Haqqislam model... the sneaky hassassin Fiday.
  


Infinity is a game that requires a veritable shitload of terrain, as well, so I've been trying to get pieces together to make the game boards a little more interesting.  Primarily, though, I've been working on a set of corridors to allow for the interiors of spaceships or bases that will work well for more interesting games.

The corridors I picked up from a company named Fantasy Arc originally through their kickstarter, though they now have everything for sale on their website here: Fantasy Arc - Bug Hunt Corridors

When you put the different pieces together, you can make a pretty good variety of shapes depending on what you're trying to achieve.  This is a stock photo from the website.
Here is one of the regular corridor sections I just painted this past weekend.
A more up-close view of some work in progress.

These should also work nicely in my next topic...

GRUNTZ





So after great effort and much convincing (or, you know, like passively mentioning its existence in conversation) Da Masta Cheef has gotten me into 15mm gaming.  15mm has always been something I've looked at and found interesting because of just how many cool vehicles there are for it (being so small, the little dudes need vehicles to get around the table), and now that I have a friend to play it with it seemed as good a time as any to jump in.

Also, dropships.

Because they're the coolest.

My centerpiece.

My main troopers, decked out with exo-armor very similar to that cool Tom Cruise movie from last year "Live. Die. Repeat."

OKAY!

With all of that, I guess I'll call it closed, even though I actually have a few more pictures of various things I've been working on.  Enjoy!



A cool archway that was really fun to paint.  A typical 28mm model is about as tall as the brick course running around the bottoms of the columns.

My character in an ongoing Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay campaign, Karyle the Pit Fighter (now Veteran).

Some scatter terrain.

This SICK temple from Antimatter Games that I picked up on clearance a few years ago (seriously this thing is normally like $200, I snagged it for around $40).  Those Dark Age models are on 50mm bases, for reference.

A Dark Age Outcasts (Salt Nomads, specifically) army!  I'm a crazy person!

My OCD spreadsheet that I designed in order to track my painted models as well as schedule deadlines for myself to finish them so I can keep all of my projects balanced and get things completed.

Yup.