Warhammer Unit Filler

I painted this thunderbox as a unit filler for a gift exchange on the Warhammer Empire forum. Sadly my recipient hasn’t popped up to say he’s received it; nor has he been active on the forum for a while. I hope everything’s ok with you, mystery giftee!

Anyway, here it is.

28mm thunderbox IMG_20131204_214133


Bolt Action Brits

Bolt Action Brits

My first lot of 8 Brit rank and file. There should have been 10 but there were a couple of casualties. One fell to my cack-handedness with Warlord’s British Uniform primer (I turned his face into an irrecoverable blob of brown) and another to more general cack-handedness where I knocked him off the desk and snapped, then lost his rifle.

I absolutely love these figures from Warlord. There’s a great variety of heads, representing Tommies of all ages, from very young to quite old. Most show a very stoic stiff upper lip, with a few looking stressed or gung-ho. They have tons of character!

I’ll be getting some more of these fellas done as time permits. I want at least 3 sections of 10 men, with a few toys like mortars, machine guns and snipers.

Mantic Open Day, 30th November – Part 2, Dreadball Tournament

I blogged about Mantic‘s open day here. Now here are the games.

Dreadball tournament

Dreadball player squeeze

I’ll get my excuses in early. With exams and whatnot, it had been a while since I’d played. I also decided to take robots, which I’d never played before. Wise? Probably not, but it sounded like a laugh.

Since hearing about them, I’ve loved the idea of robots that can transform into any position; and once transformed into guards and jacks they play very like Corporation, only with better stats.

Their big drawback is a lack of bodies. The team starts with just six players and adding another would cost a whopping 14mc! They also all start as jacks. Transforming to guards and strikers costs an action, with no free move for doubling the skill check.

So I was expecting to start each game slightly on the back foot and, with just six players, be vulnerable to bash teams like Marauders.

Game 1 vs Marauders

First up was Matt and his Maruaders. Matt followed the tried and tested bashy Orx tactics, soon leaving me a few bots short of a team. Despite the barrage of slams coming my way, Matt always left enough actions to keep the scoreboard moving. This game really ebbed and flowed, with 3 and 4 pointers coming from both teams.

Result: 0-1 loss

Game 2 vs Marauders – again

Marauders again? This time with Pathfinder Chris in chanrge. Like every good Orx coach, Chris had brought his slamming trousers, knocking seven shades of robot lubricating oil out of me. This did leave a few gaps at the back and I managed a landslide – possibly aided by a few lucky rolls.

Result: 7-0 win

Game 3 vs Marauders – aaargh!

I was getting sick of the sight of greenskins by this point and I hope I didn’t moan about this too much to my third opponent, Adam. He’d taken a different tack than the morning’s players. The big revelation for this game was that with an offensive coach, goblins become good! So Adam played a much more score-orientated game, coupled with some great defence that I hope to emulate in future. Great game, Adam!

Result 0-3 loss but the most enjoyable game of the day for me.

Game 4 vs Nameless

Dreadball games

Me (near right) about to have my arse handed to me

I’d finally escaped the green tide! My last game was against Nick and his Nameless. I’d a vague idea how to take these fellas on, but oh my they’re tricky! A single sticky guard managed to tie up two of my guards for pretty much the whole game, while the rest of his team ran rings around me. I was proud of a run interference play late in the game, to prevent an early landslide, though that was only delaying it until the final rush. So I ended the day with a hammering, but a great game nonetheless.

Result: 0-7 loss

Result and Post-Tournament Ramble

I finished 20th out of 26 – a bit disappointing, but I had great fun and that’s what it’s about. So four more tournament games under my belt; and four more fantastic opponents. I learned a lot, especially from game 3. I enjoyed playing robots and will stick with them.

With hindsight going for the advancements was a bit of a waste. A couple of times I forgot things like stat increases or abilities. Probably nothing that would’ve changed the result but I think I’d have been wiser to have taken a couple more coaching dice.

Its worth reiterating the spirit the tournament was played in. I had fun in all the games, and I hope my opponents did, too. At the prizegiving Curis, the organiser, pointed out that every game finished on time and he wasn’t called in to a single rules argument. This is a testament to both the players and the rules of the game. Both in terms of the game and the community built around it, Mantic has played an absolute blinder!

I’ll definitely be back for the next one in May, though whether that’s for Dreadball or Deadzone I don’t know. It’d be hard to turn down the chance of another four games like I’ve just had.

Thanks very much Mantic – and see you next year!

(Photos by Mantic Games, used with permission)

Mantic Open Day, 30th November

A bit late, but here’s a short review of the Mantic Open Day.

It was chuffing brilliant!

OK I’ll write something a bit longer …

My weekend kicked off on Friday night by meeting up with the splendid folks from the excellent Beasts of War down the Trip to Jerusalem. In attendance were Warren and Lloyd from BoW; James from Mantic; Alessio from all the games companies; and a host of gamers from around the country. We boozed, chatted and played a few games. I haven’t laughed so much in ages!

I was up early, without any post-pub ill-effects, for hotel breakfast the next day. Registration for the Dreadball tournament was at 9am, so there was no time for lazing around in bed. The crack-of-dawn start wasn’t entirely welcome, but the extra time to see the rest of the open day was well worth it.

We were straight into the Dreadball tournament, which I’ll write up in another post. Between games I had time to nip into Mantic’s shop and pick up some more Dreadball bases – hopefully enough to finish the teams for Seasons 1-3. I’d taken tons of cash but managed to resist buying, say, a ton of goblins for Kings of War. I’ll save that decision for the next one in May.

After a couple of games it was time to get to the burger van and into its epic meat-feast cob: an artery-hardening mix of bacon, burger, sausage, fried egg and cheese shoe-horned into a massive cob (a cob is what Nottingham folks call a bread roll). Wargamer food at its absolute finest!

The queue to pick up Deadzone was huge! I’d planned to pick it up myself, but Mantic stole my thunder by delivering it before I’d set off for Nottingham. I’d initially moaned about this but was very, very thankful to miss this:

Gamers wait to pick up Deadzone

Gamers wait to pick up Deadzone

The long lunch break meant that, as well as eating, we got to see Ronnie and Jake’s seminar at Mantic towers, just round the corner from the open day venue). While we waited, the fellas from Purple Guerilla were showing off the version of the Dreadball rulebook for iPad and Android tablets. Given I was schlepping all three DB rulebooks with me, this looks very promising. We also had a bit of time to gawp at the studio minis-painted (and, oh my, aren’t they nice?), some of the new sculpts for Kings of War and Dreadball and – best of all – the mighty Fisty Glue Man (do not Google that if you’re at work!).

The seminar itself covered Kickstarter (most future releases are expected to continue to be released in this way); Dreadball (next major update will be Dreadball Extreme – Dreadball meets Fight Club, with a plastic pitch and blocking terrain); Deadzone (future expansions to include Veer-myn); Warpath (nothing much for a while); and Kings of War (another Kickstarter to follow). No doubt there was a load stuff I’ve forgotten but it was very interesting and got me all excited to see what’s coming next year. Beasts of War were filming, so I’ll look forward to that, to jog my memory.

Ronnie and Jake spill the beans about the future.

Ronnie and Jake spill the beans about the future.

Seminar over, and after game three, I had a look at the Warlord room. My wallet was grateful that they’d not brought over the full range (I’d a half-assed shopping list for more stuff for my fledgling WWII British army). I did pick up their ruined hamlet (enough plastic to make about 6 ruined farm buildings for £30 – great value!). Next door were a couple of fine chaps showing a Bolt Action demo. I had a chat and a quick game. I had to cut it short for Dreadball game four, but enough to be completely smitten by Bolt Action. It’s superb!

Bolt Action demo

Me unexpectedly papped while playing Bolt Action (in the olive hoody)

Hawk Wargames also had a stand – I didn’t trust myself in there with a bundle of cash and the car nearby. I’ll absolutely check out Dropzone Commander when the painting table looks less shameful.

With game four done there was just time for the prizes for the Dreadball and Kings of War tournaments; and to present the money raised from both to Nottinghamshire Hospice, via Gamers for Life. There was lots of prizes, lots of laughs and lots of smiles – the day ended on a massive high note. It was a great day out and I’m already looking forward to doing it all again in May.

Well played Mantic. Well played!

(Photos by Mantic Games, used with permission)

(Part 2: my Dreadball tournament results is here)