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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Final Post of 2013...

... end of the year anyways.



Well, 2013 is coming to an end, and it's the time of year many people make new year resolutions.  I am NOT one of those people.  Instead, around this time I like to look back on the year from a geek perspective, and try to predict/plan where I want to be (geek wise) in 2014.  Sort of a "what am into, what is on my radar" type of post.  If you're interested in where I may be heading in the next year, then keep reading...

Sunday, December 29, 2013

This Geek's Week..

The REAL reason I fly Imperial...


- Worked some more on my Flames of War Germans (LW).  I've got to add the decals and do a bit of weathering to the leader of my 1st Panzer IV platoon, then he should be all finished!

- Played some Skyrim with my Ka'Po'Tun proxy-dragonkinght character.  I really enjoy playing him thus far, and I think he'll carry over into ESO pretty well.

- Played some War Thunder.  They've done a "christmas challenge", with the prize being 1 of 2 planes.  So far I have managed to complete all the tasks thus far.  Some were a bit tough, taking quite a bit of time (the "kill 10 German planes, when no one was playing germans because of it), others were insanely easy, completing themselves in 1 or 2 games. (Like shoot down 10 planes while flying Italian planes, or bomb 10 ground targets.  Easy.)

- One of the priests at my church is also an avid gamer, and invited me over to the Rectory for some games.  We played a game of Summoner Wars, followed by me teaching him X-Wing.  We played a quick intro game, followed by a 75 pt game.  I played 3 of the 181st Interceptors vs an X-wing, Y-wing, and A-wing.  It started out rough for me, 2 of my interceptors got within a single damage from dying within the opening turns.  He nabbed one, but afterwards I started dodging heavily.  I took out the x-wing, then heavily damaged the Y-wing before the A-wing took out my 2nd interceptor.  Then it came down to an untouched Fel vs an untouched A-wing.  They danced around for a bit, lots of dodging before Fel swooped him and blew him out of the sky with a massive range 1 attack.  He really liked the game, and it sounded like afterwards he went out and bought 3 starter sets!  

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Stepping into Flames of War...




Hobby wise lately, I've been working almost entirely on my Flames of War stuff after having it sit on my shelf for a few years.  I've always been fascinated by history, but lately I've been bitten by the WWII bug much harder than ever before!  Seeing as I'm also not really playing any other gaming systems at the time of writing this, I've started to make FoW more of a priority.  Here are some of my initial plans for Flames of Wars...

Sunday, December 22, 2013

This Geek's Week...




- Been playing a bunch of world of tanks, and I really do not know why.  I'm starting to feel like I really just...do... not... like it.  Not entirely sure why either, just something with the overall gameplay doesn't sit well with me.  That, and all the prototype, blueprint only, experimental tanks that you are required to progress to something you actually WANT to drive.

- Ran Sajan through the final scenario from the 2nd adventure deck, "Angel in the Tower", and once again, it was super easy.  I started at the clock tower, cleared that.  Then, took a breather at the temple.  Finally, I went to the Shrine to Lamashtu (which must have secretly been beneath the temple) for the final confrontation.  With plenty of cards left in the blessing deck, I took my time.  At one point, I had my hand all full of junk that I had picked up at the temple, and used an early fight to clear my hand, letting me redraw into a bunch of blessings.  I took a few hits from encountering blessings, but was able shrug most of that off by gaining the encountered blessings.  Once I found the Villain, I had a hand with 3 blessing in it.  I used one blessing to get past the first check, and then used my last 2 to get past the second check.  Easy-peasy, and  I took her mask as a trophy!

- So War Thunder dropped patch 1.37, and in general, most players are raging.  They rearranged and simplified the tiers, bringing 20 tiers worth of planes down into 5, and now people feel they are constantly outclassed, or that the matchmaking is screwed up.  It doesn't bother me really, I've got my bf 109's, so I'm happy.  Yes, I'm going up against planes that I normally would not have, but I'm having no issues dealing with it thus far.  I did however have to give up HB and go back to playing AB.  They also changed how planes are modifications are researched.  Again, a lot of people are raging, but meh, I'm fine with that too.  That said, I did encounter a pretty bad graphics issue.  I managed to figure out that it was a Dx11 issue, so I was able to roll it back to Dx9, which solved the problem.  I've been having a pretty good run lately on both my Germans and my US planes.

- Picked up the Summoner Wars Master set, along with the Phoenix Elves/Tundra Orcs box.

- Worked on painting some of my FoW PZ IV H tanks...

- Rolled up a new character in Skyrim.  Essentially I made a Skyrim version of the character I want to play in ESO.  The Dragonknight class in ESO is based off the martial arts forms from Akavir, and on that continent exists a race called the Ka'Po'Tun, the Dragon-Tigers, cousins to the Khajiit.  While I may not be able to represent a true Dragonknight in Skyrim,  I can still toy around with playing a Ka'Po'Tun (Khajiit), and a Ka'Po'Tun can fit into the role of a dragonborn.  It should be fun...

... and with that, I just want to wish a Merry Christmas to all my readers!  (and a happy New Year too!)

Saturday, December 14, 2013

This Geek's Week...

This is my new mascot...



- Played a bunch of War Thunder, as usual.  Mostly I've been playing Historic Battles, but I've played a round or two of Arcade as well.  I much prefer the physics of HB, and the differences in planes that it creates.  Arcade lacks a lot the physics, making planes fly a bit oddly, and giving an advantage to turn fighters, and a bit of a disadvantage to BnZ/Energy fighters.  BUT, Arcade does let you repsawn, and games are much quicker.  While I do not feel that I'm  all that good at the game, I do routinely sit among the top 3 in HB, while I'm often mid or low in AB, which is odd, as HB is supposed to be harder.

- Ran Sajan through "The Cult Exposed" scenario, with the help of my 3 yr old daughter.  (She picked the locations to explore, flipped the blessing deck, and rolled all the dice)  It was extremely easy to play solo, and I encountered pretty much zero resistance.  I stick by my original opinion that Sajan may be TOO GOOD, especially solo.  I'll keep running him through the rest of the second adventure deck, and once complete, I'll probably start an "alt character".

- My daughter decided she wanted to play X-Wing, so who am I to say no?  She decided she wanted to play as Luke Skywalker, so I played as Fel since he was similar in points.  I chose all my maneuvers first, then I let her choose her own moves, with only the slightest bit of coaching, so that I made sure she was able to at least return fire.  It started out, I took off a shield, she put a damage onto me.  Then, we circled about, I rolled for damage in range band 1, getting all hits, while she rolled blanks.  Needless to say, that was unexpected!  I expected to be slugging it out, with Luke having the advantage due to shields.  She wanted to play again, but this time wanted to use Han solo in the Falcon, while I chose Boba Fett.  I figured this would work out better for her anyway, due to the 360 firing, she was free to move however she liked.  We traded a few shots, but she lost interest part way through, and we never finished.  Oh well, she is only 3 after all...

- Played a few rounds of World of Tanks.  As usual, dominating in my tier 2 Panzer II, but getting rolled in anything tier 3 due to matchmaking.

- Worked a bit on my flames of War Italian infantry platoons, Panzer IV H's, and a unit of Panzer III's, although I doubt I'll ever use the III's. (or any of my FoW stuff for that matter)

Friday, December 13, 2013

Dreadball Orc Team: The Giraffes, Giraffes, GIRAFFES!

My 2nd Dreadball team: The Giraffes, Giraffes, GIRAFFES!

"Super Spicy Rooster Sauce Co", corporate sponsor for "The Giraffes, Giraffes, GIRAFFES!" would like to introduce you to their latest venture into the sport of Dreadball, as well as a bonus coupon offer:  "Buy 1 pallet of Super Spicy Rooster Sauce, get the 2nd pallet at FULL PRICE!"


Sunday, December 8, 2013

This Geek's Week...

Not Geek related, but SKC won the 2013 MLS Cup in a pretty epic fashion!
Way to go boys!  SKCTID!



- Finished up "Anzio" by Lloyd Clark over Thanksgiving break.  It was a good book, and gave me plenty of insights into the Allied invasion of Italy, which I'm hoping to use as some background info and inspiration in Flames of War.

- Picked up "Master of Devils" by Dave Gross, the second Pathfinder novel featuring Jeggar and Radovan.

- My Orc Dreadball team is now fully painted!  I still have not been able to get in another game after my initial one several months ago, and as such, I don't plan on picking up anything else for dreadball until I manage to get in more games.

- Conducted a BGG trade.  I traded my copy of Antike Duellum for a brand new copy of Medwar Sicily.  I was never able to get in a game of Antike Duellum, as it is a 2-player game, while Medwar Sicily features some solo play.  I shipped my game, so hopefully everything goes smoothly on the other end as well.

- Trying to get a hang of piloting my BF 109's in Historic Battle mode in War Thunder.  It's sad to say, but I'm so much better flying US planes.  I WANTED to be almost an exclusive all german player, but it's hard when I struggle in my 109's but excel in other nations.  That said, tanks are coming to war Thunder pretty soon, and man, do they look SEXY!  I can't wait to get in the seat of a Panzer III or IV...

- I've also been playing several games of the Pokemon trading figure game with my 3 year old daughter.  We don't have many figures, just enough for a 6v6 game, but she really seems to like it.  The game's ok, but it's a start at turning my daughter into my own little future gaming buddy! 

- Played a few rounds of World of Tanks.  It's funny, because I hop in my Panzer III (tier 3) and get thrown into matches from tier 3-5 and I die usually before firing a shot.  BUT, when I hop in my Panzer II (tier 3) I get placed in tier 2-3 match and score 4 kills and top score.  It's just a bit odd....

- Worked on some Flames of war stuff.  Some panzer III's and IV's, but I also started working on some troop platoons for my Italians.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

This Geek's Week...





- Worked a bit more on my Flames of War stuff.  I think I went a bit overboard on the chipping effect of my earlier two tanks so I went back a fixed them a little.  I also swapped the NSP flags on my commanders for the HG Panzer Division flags instead, mostly just to give them even more of an HG feeling and to separate them a bit more from the typical panzer company look.  It's also a bit easier to paint as well.  I've now got 3 tanks finished.

- Played a bit of War Thunder.  I've been taking a bit of break from it lately to spend a bit more time with my wife after my daughter goes to bed, instead of playing from 8 pm to 2 am like I was doing a week or so ago.

- I recently started watching "Girls und Panzer" and am really enjoying it.  I've seen clips before, but seeing as I'm in tank-mode lately, I've begun to watch it from start to finish.  Needless to say, I'm hooked!  I can already envision building a couple of model tanks based off the show... starting with the Panzer IV D.

- Played a few rounds of Hearthstone.

- Ran Sajan through the foxglove manor scenario from the Skinsaw Murders adventure pack.  This one was pretty easy, though I didn't end the scenario with any fancy new gear.

- Worked a brief bit on my last 3 Orc Dreadball players...


** As Thanksgiving Day is next week, I'll be out of town, so no gaming or geekery will probably happen.  Here's to hoping I have a better trip than last year!  (both myself and my daughter got extremely sick)  

HAPPY THANKSGIVING, EVERYONE!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

SPOILER FREE Book Review: Prince of Wolves (Pathfinder Tales)





Prince of Wolves
By Dave Gross

From the back of the book:
For half-elven Pathfinder Varian Jeggare and his devil-blooded bodyguard Radovan, things are rarely as they seem.  Yet not even the notorious crime-solving duo is prepared for what they find when a search for a missing Pathfinder takes them into the gothic and mist-shrouded mountains of Ustalav.  Beset on all sides by noble intrigue, mysterious locals, and the deadly creatures of the night, Varian and Radovan must use both sword and spell to track the strange rumors to their source and uncover a secret of unimaginable proportions, aided in their quest by a pack of sinister werewolves and a mysterious mute priestess.  But it'll take more than merely solving the mystery to finish this job.  For shadowy figures have taken note of the pair's investigations, and the forces of darkness are set on making sure neither mans get out of Ustalav alive...

Initial thoughts:
Since finishing "Nightglass" just prior to this one, I now have at least one book from the Pathfinder Tales to gauge this one off of.  I've always heard fans of the Warhammer Fantasy novels rave about the "Gotrek & Felix" series, although I never read them, my initial thought was that Jeggare & Radovan would end up being the Pathfinder equivalent of Gotrek & Felix.  With that in mind, the big question going into this one was: after finishing this one, would I want to read the next Jeggare & Radovan adventure?

The good:
First off, the characters were really well written.  They were each dynamic in their own ways, and the mixture of personalities just worked well.  They were believable as well.  The characters come from two wildly different backgrounds, and they definitely acted the parts through the whole novel.  The plot was pretty good as well, kept me guessing, several curves in there, and a few unseen surprises in there as well.  It also painted an interesting picture of Ustalav as well, and one of the things I always look for in a Pathfinder novel is whether or not I get a deeper understanding of the Pathfinder realm.

The not so good: (because nothing is perfect)
The first person perspective kind of threw me off a bit, especially in the opening chapters.  The reason being, it's hard to get into a new character when you read: "I did this..." or "I did that..." then the next chapter starts off the same way, with "I did this..." or 'I did that..." but it would be the other character this time around.  I found it initially a bit hard to figure which of the two characters was the "I", until I realized if one chapter dealt with Jaggare, then the next would be about Radovan's experiences.  Set the book down for too long (a few days, a week) and you could find yourself forgetting once again just who the "I did this..." would be referring to.  There were also some awkward instances where the character would be dictating, as if writing in his field journal, with the view of the reader as the recipient.  It never flowed well, and when it happened, it created some awkward situations as far as reading went.  Luckily, the author didn't keep it up through the whole novel, as I found it a bit distracting.  Finally, while I enjoyed the overall plot, it felt like several "mini encounters" that all came together for one big story.  I likened it to RPG storytelling, or something like the Pathfinder Adventure Card game where you move to a location, resolve an encounter, move to another location, resolve a new encounter.  It didn't bother me too much, but a few of those encounters could have been extended out, or fleshed out a bit more, even at the expense of losing one or two of those "minor encounters" in my opinion. 

Final thoughts:
All in all, I really enjoyed the book.  The characters were great.  I learned about Ustalav and the Pathfinder lore, and the plot was pretty unpredictable to say the least!  So, my initial question was: would I read another book featuring Jaggare & Radovan?  Well, my answer is a yes!  I'm looking forward to seeing if the author continues with the first person perspective he used in this one, and if there are any wonky, journal-like parts in the next one since he seemed to stop doing it about half way through this novel.  I'm looking forward to picking up "Master of Devils", the next book that follows these two characters!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

This Geek's Week...




- Finished up my first "test tank" for my FoW HG Panzer Division.  I'm sure I'll never be able to get game in, but at least I'm finally getting the stuff painted after they have been sitting on my shelf for over a year or two.  I've also finished up the first tank from my command section.

- Worked on my Orc dreadball team some more.  I have 7/10 done thus far.  I've also come up with the name for my Orc team, they are the.... wait for it... The GIRAFFES!  GIRAFFES!  GIRAFFES!  

- Played some more War Thunder.  I've started getting a little bit frustrated with the Germans in Arcade Battles due to the severe lack of physics, "furballs" of fighters, abundance of "Vultures" on my team, and the overall advantages to turn fighters in that mode, I really think I need to start moving towards playing Historic Battles more with my Germans.  That said, I recently had some good AB results with my 4/5 Americans, going 7-1 with top score in one game.

- Finished reading the Pathfinder novel: "Prince of Wolves".  Started reading a non-fiction book, "Anzio: Italy and the battle for Rome - 1944" by Lloyd Clark.

- Played a few rounds of Hearthstone.  I still stand by my thought that I cannot see myself really spending any money on it.  I also found myself growing a bit frustrated with it as well.  I'm winning a game, the opponent has no chance, and yet he won't just concede.  On the flipside, I do tend to concede early.  I see my opponent has the advantage, I know what's in my deck, I know he's got the game, so I concede.  Why waste another 10+ minutes on what I know to be a lost cause?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Initial forays into scenic model bases...

Son:  "How many cannons does it have?  2+ armor save?  Feel No pain?"
Dad: "No son, this isn't for some silly game!  This is modeling for the sake of modeling..."

    Incase you haven't been reading the last few weeks worth my "This Geek's Week...", aside from solo games of the Pathfinder Adventure card game, I've been unable to get any tabletop gaming in.  I show up to the LGS, and people are either getting ready to leave, don't have time, or just don't feel like playing anything.  It's been getting rather frustrating, as my time for gaming is limited, and when I manage to make it to the store I WANT TO GAME!  With that growing frustration in mind, I've decided to start moving away from gaming, and building new armies, and instead move towards building more traditional model kits, as well as the scenic bases to mount them on.  With that in mind, my first forays into this new hobby will be to take some of my unused gaming models, and to start experimenting with how to mount them.  Why have them just thrown on a shelf, or kept tucked away in a gaming bag, never to see the light of day, when I can mount them to a fancy base, and display them on a shelf properly!  These are my first two attempts: my Imperial Fists Rhino from Warhammer 40k, and my Panzer Auf 1-C from DUST.

This Geek's Week...

I herd U liek Mudkips...



- Been playing a bunch of War Thunder, as usual.  I think I need to just come to terms with the fact that I'm not all that good at the game.  I'm kind of a middle of the road player at best.  Sometimes I top the charts, but those time are few and far in between!  A funny little dialog happened in one match:
RandomPilot: "Are the bf 109's any good?"
Me (flying a bf 109): "I like mine, but they seem fragile"
RandomPilot: "I know, right?"
** I immediately drop behind a plane, who just happens to be "Randompilot" in a 109.  Two quick cannon shots from me and "RandomPilot" drops from the skies!
Me: "See, fragile! =P"

- Finished up the little diorama base for my Imperial Fist Rhino, and mounted the tank onto it.  I think it turned out pretty good, for a first attempt.  I think I may tackle a WWII plane next, maybe my favorite plane in War Thunder, a German BF 109 if I can find one.

- Been working on my Orc Dreadball team.  I've got about half the team finished.

- Ran Sajan through the first two scenarios of the new "Skinsaw Murders" adventure pack, "undead uprising" and "ghoul bait".  Since these were both undead themed, I restricted the monster decks to just skeletons, zombies, and ghouls.  My 3 year old daughter played the first scenario with me, her job was to flip the blessing deck, and to roll the dice, calling out the numbers.  (see, games can be educational!)  She did her best at trying to kill my character with her low die rolls.  It came down to the last card in the blessing deck, before I managed to kill the villain.  I played the second one by myself, and it went much smoother.  All in all, I'm really enjoying the overall theme of the scenarios.

- Started to finally paint some of my Flames of Wars stuff, after having it sit on the shelf for probably a year.  I'm blaming my recent love of War Thunder for this.  I've got my first test model all but finished.  For my Germans, I'm going with an HG Panzer Division.  In FoW, I'm making the allied invasion of Italy the main focus of my forces.

- Played a few rounds of World of Tanks.  1st one I got put into a higher tier bracket.  There's not much you can do against enemy tanks when your rounds just bounce off of em!  The second round, we lost via capping.  I did a bit a damage, and made my way, along with one other, to the enemy cap.  Only problem was, 2 enemies made it to our cap point, and the 2 friendlies that were close to our base decided to just drive off!  Finally in the last game, I took out 4 tanks before running into a tank I couldn't hurt.  I tried to work my way around him, to try and take some rear shots, but we ended up capping before I could make it.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

This Geek's Week...




- Been playing a TON of War Thunder.  (and staying up way too late in the process) I'm mainly focusing on flying German planes, but I've started flying the low tier American planes as well.  I'm still working out my aim issues.  I also gave "historic battles" a try, and while pretty hard, I honestly enjoyed it.

- Started playing the Hearthstone beta.  The game is just ok.  I enjoyed the WoW TCG back in the day, and even thought about picking it (along with the MMO) back up again, that is until I heard Cryptozoic lost the license from Blizzard.  That's what hearthstone is, a slightly modified, simplified (but still enjoyable), version of the old WoW TCG.  Despite it being a somewhat enjoyable game, they want you to spend $3 for 2 packs of digital cards, and there in lies the issue.  (as well to access some other features)  I enjoy the game, but I cannot bring myself to spend $3 for random, digital, data.  I'd spend $3 for physical cards, but not for something like this that isn't tangible.  That said, you can earn packs at a much slower pace by just playing.  Honestly, I'm not sure how well it will be received without some major incentive to keep playing and to buy packs.

- I recently decided to start taking some of my unused, larger gaming models, and mounting them into little displays/dioramas as you'd see regular modelers doing.  I've picked up some supplies, and so far have mounted one of my DUST Warfare walkers onto a base.  I'll also be mounting my Imperial Fists Rhino in a similar fashion.  From there, I'll probably start doing regular models of tanks and WWII planes instead of painting regular gaming models since lately I've not been getting much gaming in. (if you couldn't tell by these posts of late)

- Ran Valeros through a special "Halloween Themed", and it just proved too much for him!  Thus far, I've killed 2 characters, only Sajan has made it all the way through so far.  I also ordered the next adventure deck, the Skinsaw Murders.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

This Geek's Week...




- Played a bit of Skyrim.

- Decided to give World of Tanks and World of Warplanes a try.  In WoT, I've mainly been having a lot of luck driving the Panzer II's and III's.  I'm not the greatest, but I tend to get a kill or two in most games before I die...

- Also decided to give War Thunder a try as well, and man, I LOVE it!  Honestly, imho, it's way better than World of Warplanes.  Better graphics, better dogfights, better planes, solo missions, I can keep going on and on!  World of Tanks better watch out, as War Thunder will have tanks coming soon too.  I'm not the greatest, but I can hold my own...

- Worked a bit on my Orc Dreadball team, getting another Goblin or two finished.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

This Geek's Week...

Been having no luck getting games in at the LGS...


Soooo, for the 2nd week in a row, I have done almost nothing gaming/geek related.  Played a bit of Skyrim, painted a test model Goblin for Dreadball, started reading another Pathfinder novel, "Prince of Wolves", and that was pretty much it...

Thursday, October 17, 2013

SPOILER FREE Book Review: Nightglass (Pathfinder Tales)




"Nightglass" by Liane Merciel

From the back of the book:
In the grim nation of Nidal, carefully chosen children are trained to practice dark magic, summoning forth creatures of horror and shadow for the greater glory of the Midnight Lord.  Isiem is one such student, a promising young Shadowcaller whose budding powers are the envy of his peers.  Upon coming of age, he's dispatched on a diplomatic mission to the mountains of Devil's Perch, where he's meant to assist the armies of devil-worshiping Cheliax in clearing out a tribe of monstrous winged humanoids.  Yet as the body count rises and Isiem comes face to face with the people he's exterminating, lines begin to blur, and the Shadowcaller must ask himself who the real monsters are...

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Pathfinder ACG Scenario: "The Sandpoint Goblin Wars"




I'm not sure what it is about them, but there is just something I really like about the Goblins in Pathfinder.  Maybe it's their character design/art, or their funny little quirks, either way, they are one of my favorite aspects of the Pathfinder universe!  I've yet to find an RPG group wanting to play the PnP RPG, but I've been having a bunch of fun playing the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game solo.  Having run through all the base scenarios, and the 1st adventure pack, I decided to try crafting my own little scenario using the cards from the base set, adventure pack 1, and the character add-on.

Think your characters are up for the challenge?  Will your characters rally to the aid of a besieged sandpoint, only to heed to call of vengeance and bring to fight right back to the Goblin horde?  If so, I give you "The Sandpoint Goblin Wars"...



This Geek's Week...

what could be cooler than Ezren fighting a giant shark!?!?

I keep getting a lot of groans at LGS in regards to my NBN deck, people hate facing it, but I contend it's totally beatable.  In regards to my lack of server defense I used the following line to describe it: "Dude, an old grandma with an AOL account could easily hack into my servers!", and I think it pretty aptly describes the deck! =P

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Sunday, September 22, 2013

This Geek's Week...




This week has been all about the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, although I mixed in a few other things like Dreadball as well...


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Dreadball Team Spotlight: The Techno-Wizards!


League: MLD (Major League Dreadball)

Corp Sponsor: Cerner Bio-tech Medical

Head Coach: Veter Permes

Notable Players: Zeus, Failheiber, Beastler, Sahd, Jimmy


New uniforms, fresh off the assembly line!
About:
Since their recent sponsorship and re-branding, the Techno-Wizards have consistently done well during their regular season play, but typically end up falling short during playoffs.  The Techno-Wizards play in one of the finest dreadball stadiums ever built in the MLD, and their fans are known to be some of the most intense and vocal in the entire league, making CBM Park a difficult stadium for the away side to play in.  This season, Head Coach Veter Permes, seems to be comfortable enough with the Techno-Wizards' current standings in the eastern division to start experimenting with different lineups, trading away some of the more experienced players, and giving some of the young newcomers their shot on the pitch.  Clearly, the opposing teams must have head the Techno-Wizards' veterans thoroughly scouted and picked apart, because the young newcomers have proved to be an "ace in the hole" for Veter Permes, and taken  the opposing teams completely by surprise thus far.  The question remains however, is this younger looking Techno-Wizards team enough to make a serious grab for the cup, or will the tension of the playoff season get the better of them yet again?  With the well known motto of "I Believe..." firmly placed in the fans' minds, everyone remains hopeful that this season will be the one that sees the Techno-Wizards go all the way!


** This Message paid for by Cerner Bio-Tech Medical: "Creating a better YOU."

Sunday, September 15, 2013

This Geek's Week...





- Been playing a bunch of Skyrim.  From a story standpoint, the whole reason for my Bosmer being is Skyrim was to get revenge on the Dark Brotherhood for an assassination that took place in Valenwood, and the Bosmer gov dispatched a member of the coveted Valenwood Rangers to do so.  He's marked with a green handprint on his face to signify his vow, and to symbolize that the black hand is no match for the green.  All that said, the fight itself was very anticlimactic, as my character snuck in and sniped each target, facing little to no resistance.  Now that that is finished, I guess I continue to work on trying to complete my dragonscale armor.
- Worked on painting my Dreadball team a bit more.  So far, I've got 1/2 the team finished, along with the balls, and the referee.  I should have the whole team finished by the end of next week.

- Played 4 games of Netrunner, winning all 4, with my Criminal and NBN decks.  I played against Noise/HB, then Noise/Weyland.

- Finally got to play the Pathnfinder card game, and I really enjoyed it!  I played the Sorceress, but I ended up dying due to a Goblin that required me to pass a check 8 roll on d6 (i.e. impossible) that caused me to take 8 damage and meant I couldn't use any spells.  That was the very definition of SCREWED, but I still really enjoyed the game nonetheless.

- Played 2 games of 7 Wonders.  I ended in the "middle ground" as far as placing went for both of those.

- Played 2 more games of Netrunner with my NBN/Criminal vs Noise/HB, winning both by a pretty big margin.

- Ordered the Pathfinder Adventure game and character add-on, along with the krosmaster: Arena base game...

Sunday, September 8, 2013

This Geek's Week...



... Another slow week as far as gaming goes.


- Been playing a bunch of Skyrim again.

- Played a few playtest games of Arena rex.

- Worked on my Dreadball Corp team.

Monday, September 2, 2013

This Geek's Week...




- Went back and added a few extra details to my Retribution warjacks.

- Repainted/tweaked my A-Wings to fit in with my Renegade Squadron.

- Taught Netrunner to a new player at the LGS.

- My Dreadball stuff arrived, so I've begun to work on the figures.  I've got one test model for the corp team done so far.

- Finished reading "Darth Plagueis".  It was alright.  Started off slow, and I had a bit of a hard time keeping "into it".  Started reading "Roma" by Steven Saylor.  I've read a few of his books before, and I must say, it may be my obsession with all things related to ancient Rome, but I'm definitely becoming a big fan of his...

- Reworked my darkside decks for the Star wars LCG for the 100th time.  This time, I'm testing out a new trooper deck idea using the Vader's Fist objective set.  I also built a different Imperial Navy deck to try, one revolving mostly around walkers.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

My Ludus Magnus 5v5 Cohort in Arena Rex...





In Arena Rex, teams of gladiators (cohorts) take to the sands to spill blood for the cheers of the crowd.  The typical game is either a 3v3, 5v5, or 8v8 battle.  There are currently 4 factions to choose from, with several unaligned (faction-less) models as well.  That said, from the very start Ludus Magnus, with their more traditional gladiator aesthetic, has been my personal favorite.  I've played all the factions thus far for testing purposes, but I keep coming back to Ludus Magnus.  I believe 5v5 will be the "base level" for the game, so I'm focusing on that, and will add gladiators to my 5v5 list below to hit 8v8 or take some away to hit the lower 3v3 level.  Below is my favorite Ludus Magnus 5v5 list thus far.  I may tweak it in the future after further testing, also bear in mind these are the playtest rules/stats, future rules changes could also affect my gladiator choices as well...

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Blood upon the sands. More Arena Rex pics!

Tiet-Khebi vs Urbicus

Red Republic Games have given a look at some of their completed, pre-production models, and man, are they BEAUTIFUL!  If you have not already done so, head on over to the RRG forums and check out the playtest rules for yourself.  Some of the models were shown in a post earlier in their WIP state, and now RRG has shown us the completed version of several of them, as well as a short video with a 360 view of Tiet-Khebi, Otho (one of my favorites), and Proximo.  Anyway, enough babbling, on with the eye candy!
 




We have Tiet-Khebi on the left, with Urbicus on the right, along with RRG's resin columns behind them.  The columns are HUGE, and would look really cool once cut up to look collapsed imo.






Proximo, the chimera-like beast.  Man, I just cannot wait to get a hold of one!




**Sorry, I couldn't embed the video for some odd reason.




As always, some good stuff coming out of RRG!  Makes me wish I had pledged for the entire collection...


Monday, August 26, 2013

A few of the games on my radar...




Gen Con has come and come and gone, and while I did not get the chance to go (ever), I still was able to view a ton of the pictures from various booths, and get several reviews from the various podcasts I listen to.  With all that info, here are several of the games that have been "on my radar" so to speak.  That's not to say that I will be 100% be picking all of these up.  After all, I'd still need people to play against, and lets face it, I'm pretty sure the gamers in my area recognize a GOOD game if it came up and punched em in the face!  But that is another rant in and of itself.  There will also be a bit of trend in my choices, see if you can spot it.  Anyway, here are some of the games that have caught my eye...

Saturday, August 24, 2013

This Geek's Week...

Bit of a "Star Wars gaming week" this time around...



-  For the Star Wars LCG, I dismantled my Scum & Villainy deck and built a Sith deck instead.  I also rebuilt my Smugglers & Spies.  I was going to try a Han+Chewie+Falcon+Lando deck, but decided I'd stick with my Renegade Squadron, and add in the Sleuth and Blockade Runner.

- Picked up the Spartacus board game.

- Played 4 games (2 full matches) of the Star Wars LCG.  First was Renegade Sleuths vs a Scum & Villainy.  2nd was my new Sith vs a Rebel Hoth Speeder deck.  3rd was my Jedi vs Navy Capital Ships. 4th was my Navy Trooper/Walker deck vs Rebel Hoth Speeders again.  IIRC, I lost the first match due to 1-1 scoring, I solidly won the 2nd match set, winning both of those rounds.  I've come to the conclusion that I need to focus down, and create 2 strong decks, backed by 2 fun ones, instead of having 4 decks that may fall in the suboptimal category.  I've got work to do...

- Also played a 100 pt game of X-wing.  I used my 181st consisting of Turr, Fel, both with a little gear, a Saber pilot, and an Alpha.  I fought a geared Wedge, geared Biggs, a rookie x-wing, and an A-Wing.  Seeing as I didn't do Interceptor spam, I was a bit outclassed.  Biggs shot forward, but wedge got stuck in a little traffic jam in the center of the board, which allowed Fel and Turr to tag-team Wedge, which blew up in a single round of fire to the 2 pilots due to botched defense rolls.  At that point, I was pretty happy,  I claimed the life of one of the Rebel's best pilots, this was a win for the Empire in my book, regardless of the actual outcome!  Rebels followed by eating one of my lowbie pilots due to a hit and a crit, which resulted in a total of 3 damage.  Turr and my other lowbie started to take a beating, while I was forced to start spreading damage on the rebel ships.  I had yet to cause another casualty before it came down to just an untouched Fel, but he literally only lasted another round before dying himself...

- Dismantled and reworked ALL of my Star wars decks.  For the lightside, I built a Jedi/Smuggler deck running Luke+Han+Chewie+Falcon and a Rebel vehicle deck running sleuths along with Renegade Squadron elements.  On the Darkside, I built a Sith deck that is also running some scum elements.  I may just end up dropping it all together in favor of running another Navy deck.  I also reworked my trooper deck, removing the walker elements, adding back in the Vader set.  Honestly, I think a trooper deck is my favorite deck theme, which is why I'm constantly going back to it despite it not being a "top tier deck", maybe one day troopers will be strong!

- Ordered the Dreadball base game, as well the Enforcer MVP.... Now, I'll finally have some miniatures to paint!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

This Geek's Week...

Then again, what isn't these days...

** Not a lot of stuff went on this week, so I kind of ranted about the Game of Thrones Card Game...


- More Arena Rex playtesting.  I also made a felt "Travel Arena" that can be rolled up and transported in my battlefoam bag.  It turned out ok, and will hold me over for now...

- Played a game of Sentinels vs the Chairman, and we got owned...

- Convinced my wife, who is NOT a gamer of any sorts, to play the HBO Game of Thrones card game with me.  She played Starks and I played Lannisters.  For not being a gamer, she played really well, chose her plots well, attack/defended well etc.  If she made one mistake, it was that she put the direwolf (bodyguard) on Jon Snow instead of Rob Stark, as it ended up costing her 5 power after I hit him with "A Lannister Always Pays His Debts".  I did come to one overall conclusion about the game.  So the HBO version plays pretty much the exact same as the regular GoT LCG, with a few less keywords and such, but the mechanics are the same.   The key difference though is in the decks.  in the regular LCG, each player constructs his or her own deck, with various strengths and weaknesses, avenues for winning, etc.  However, in the HBO version you are playing pre-constructed decks, and those decks are both really well balanced, almost too balanced I might add, to the point of almost a stalemate.  In the regular LCG, it's not uncommon for someone to rocket to 15 power in a handful of turns, getting 5 or more power ahead of an opponent is pretty common, while each time I've played the HBO version, both sides usually have stayed within one or two power of each other the whole game.  Then, there's the issue of the decks themselves.  The decks you design in the regular LCG version can often focus on making sure you have a strict advantage in one type of challenge, sometimes with the objective of the deck being to win via consistently winning that single challenge type.  (I.e. attrition through military, board control through intrigue, etc)  Problem is, in the HBO version, you really get none of that.  Both the Starks and the Lannisters can effectively do all 3 challenge types with equal vigor.  The Starks do seem to try to go mostly military, but the Lannisters can still mount an effective defense against 9-out-of-10 times, and Lannisters seem to lend more towards intrigue, but likewise, the Starks tend to be able to mount a suitable defense there as well.  Due to this, the games can feel slow, long, and tend to come down to a bit of a renown race to clinch out a victory.  As a huge A Song of Ice and Fire junkie, I really enjoy the game, I just wish there was some extra customization options available outside of just the plot the decks... that and maybe that my beloved Targaryens (the true and rightful heirs to the Iron Thrones) would make the appearance within the game as a playable deck.  That said, I really hoped FFG would have shown some additional support for the HBO version, but at this point, it really does seem unlikely...

Saturday, August 10, 2013

This Geek's Week...

I've been playing this game soooo much this week...



- Played several games of Infinite Crisis, and am getting a better grasp on the game.  I'm still not good, mind you, but I often get more kills than deaths, which is a start.  So far 10-6 is probably my best score using Nightmare Batman, it was 10-3 till the last few minutes then i got overzealous and sloppy.

- Been playtesting Arena Rex like crazy, almost a game each day, and have become pretty active on their forums.  I'm really digging the game so far, and am glad I made the investment!  Plus, the devs are pretty active and responsive to our feedback.  If you haven't done so, you can check out their early beta rules from their forums.

- Painted the 181st stripes on my Interceptors.

- Played the Battlestar Galactica board game, and it was kind of meh.  I really liked the show and all, but the game didn't really click for me.

- Ran through the 1st group op in SWTOR as the healer.  No one died, so I must have done ok...

- Still reading "Darth Palagueis", but I'm having a harder time getting into.  I think it's because I hate the Muuns...

- Picked up 2 books by Steven Saylor "Roma" and "Empire"... both stories about ancient Rome, because I am in no way, shape, or form, obsessed with Rome! =P

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Arena Rex WIPs...






Arena Rex recently began an open playtesting phase, and since then I've pretty much been playing at least one game a night.  The game is definitely fun, and offers several mechanics I have yet to encounter in any other games currently out there.  As I said, the game is currently in open playtesting and the rules, stat cards, and some proxies for the models can all be downloaded through Red Republic Game's forums at ArenaRex.com .  But, that's not what this is about.  Actually, I thought I would post up some of the WIPs that can be found on the forums and through a google search.  Since this is all public knowledge, I'm not giving away any super-secret models, rather I'm just "googling it" for you!  In my opinion, Arena Rex features some of the greatest, most realistic sculpts I have encountered thus far.  Anyway, enough talking, ON WITH THE SHOW!



Sunday, August 4, 2013

This Geek's Week...




- My 5 TIE interceptors and A-Wings arrived.  Now I've got to start painting em up...

- Tweaked my Smugglers deck for the Star Wars LCG.  I'm thinking I may need to scrap it, and come up with a whole new approach.

- Played 2 games of Sentinels vs Voss, and the Time pirate chick.  Both died really easily.  I really wish they would make a DC comics version, using the Sentinels mechanics, where everyone plays a specific DC hero on the Justice League vs a Super Villain.  That would be amazing imo.  Heck, I'd even play it if it were in the Marvel universe so long as they included the Avengers.  (The only Marvel title aside from Moon Knight that I'd actually read)

- Played a game of the HBO version of the Game of Thrones card game.  I ended up winning as the Lannister player, but both of us made some big play errors as far as poor target/plot choices go that cost during the game.

- Been playing a bunch of "Infinite Crisis" a new MOBA (League of Legends style game) set in the DC Universe.  The game itself is fine, and everything looks great, the problem is that I have no experience playing a MOBA and I.. AM... TERRIBLE!  I've mostly been playing as Green Lantern since he's my favorite DC character, but I cannot seem to get him to work.  So far, my best game was going 8-5 while using cyborg, most of the time I'm pretty deep into the negatives...

- Incase you didn't notice my earlier post, Arena Rex has just entered into playtesting.  I've been working on getting things ready for it by printing out the cards, reading the rules, and coming up with a good solution for proxying models.  I'm hoping to start doing some test games of 3v3 and 5v5 in the next few days...

Friday, August 2, 2013

Arena Rex Playtest goes live!


That's right!  Red Republic Games, creators of Arena Rex, have released their playtest rules for their successfully kickstarted gladiatorial skirmish game, and I could not be more excited!  With this playtest release, I'm hoping to be able to start covering Arena Rex in more detail as the game continues to progress.

I've got my weekend plans for next several months figured out...

- see you on the sands!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

200pt, 2v2 X-Wing game...



A couple of us tried to set up a 2v2 game of X-wing, with each player using 100 pts.  It ended up being 2v1 for the most part, as for some reason the guy that was interested in playing earlier kind of left us hanging at the shop, but after 2 or 3 turns into it, another player jumped in on my side taking over Vader/Bounty Hunter squad.  We also set a 2 hour time limit, so we could get other gaming in that night as well.  While not a true batrep, here's what I was running, and some of the interesting points from the game...

Imperials:
Squad 1 -
7x Academy Pilots
Backstabber

Squad 2-
Darth Vader w/ Assault Missile
2x Bounty Hunters (generic firespray)


Rebels: (to the best of my memory)
Squad 1-
Chewie in the falcon
Horten
Cheap Y-wing
**There was an assault missile in there somewhere

Squad 2 -
Biggs, loaded up.  Extra shields, Extra defense dice, etc.
Wedge
Luke Skywalker.

As I said before, we set a time limit so we wouldn't end up playing just a single game of X-wing all night.  We also used a 4x4 table instead of the typical 3x3 due to the size of the game, we still used my regular 3x3 black mat though, as otherwise the ships would have been slipping around everywhere due to the slick table surface.  So keep in mind, that ships may sometimes appear "out of bounds" in the picture, but actually are not.  Anyway, here's some of the highlights...

This Geek's Week...

My touched-up Falcon and Slave 1...



- The games from my BGG trade arrived today.  Added to my collection are: the HBO Game of Thrones card game, Antike Duellum, Hannibal: Rome vs Carthage, Pocket Battles: Celts vs Romans, The Republic of Rome, Sylla, Tribune: Primus Inter Pares.  I'm going to try really hard to stick to my Roman theme for my board game collection (with the exception of my Game of Thrones stuff), but I can already tell you it may be hard....

- Played a big 200 pt, 2v2 game of X-Wing.  My side had 8 TIES, Vader, and 2 generic bounty hunters, while the rebels had Chewie in the Falcon, a decked out Biggs, Wedge, Luke, and 2 Y-Wings.  We played to 2 hours so we wouldn't be playing just that single game all night, and by the end of the time we (the Imperials) had won the game 45 pts to 95 pts.

- Played 3 games of Boss Monster.  It's a pretty fun little game, with plenty of character.  The Board Gamers at my LGS seem to be all about this game lately...

- Played 6 games of Incan Gold.  A fun, quick, simple, yet addictive game.

- I finally managed to get my hands on 5 TIE interceptors and 2 A-Wings.  I'll finally be able to field the 181st the way they were meant to be played! (after they arrive in the mail of course!)

- A friend of mine started playing SWTOR, so I decided to join him, even if he wanted to play on the Republic side.  Having played a Sith Juggernaut and an Imperial Agent on another server, I elected to try a different class, rolling a trooper named "RT-NineOneThree".  The idea being troop designations in the movies are "TK-#" and in the Clone Wars the clones are "CT-#", so I had the idea of a Republic Trooper having an "RT-#" designation.  (and 913 is my area code)  I may also roll a Jedi Consular at some point too...

- My 2 copies of Edge of Darkness arrived, and man, are many of those cards complete "game changers", and not just for the Smugglers and Bounty Hunters either.  I've reworked my Smugglers and BH decks.

- I absolutely devoured the book: "A Gladiator Dies Only Once", a collection of short stories in the Roma Sub Rosa series by Steven Saylor.  Completely finishing it in only a week. (which is fast for me)  I picked up "Darth Plagueis" to read next...

- Repainted my Millennium Falcon and Slave 1.  With the falcon, I mainly painted some exhaust glow, dirtied it up a bit, and picked out some additional details like blaster-hit marks.  For the Slave 1, I did a lot more work.  I swapped a lot of grey colors for green, made some of the scuffs and scratches on the red potion of ship look a bit more realistic, and once again painted some exhaust glow.

- I'm not one for Facebook games, but I'm giving Game of Thrones: Ascent a try.  I go by the name "Joeseph Blackfyre"...