Author Archive

Life on the NET # I

Posted on September 2nd, 2015 under , . Posted by

So as threatened this is part one of the Netrunner series and uncharacteristically for me it’s an unboxing. I don’t normally go in for these as they rarely seem to say much of actual use but it’s a very logical starting point. Hopefully I shall not disappoint, myself as much as any of you!

The first thing you come across, other than the push board of tokens, is the rulebook. I say book rather than pamphlet as it’s A4 and almost thirty six pages of high end gloss finish. I’ve had the bonus of being lead through a few games by others. This procedure comes highly recommended. It’s not a difficult game, more technical if that makes sense?

In honesty I’m not going to try to give a detailed description of gameplay, I doubt I can with any clarity. In summary Corporations attempt to complete Agendas whilst defending them from the Runners with ICE programs (firewalls), or simply killing the runner. Runners attack the Corporations to steal the Agendas using hacking Programs whilst avoiding being traced and hunted down.
In a full game each player brings a deck for each side and takes a turn at each role.

As mentioned previously it’s a very claustrophobic, atmospheric game of skullduggery, bluff and nefariousness. Very, very good fun but fairly brutal with it.

Stealing a quote;
‘Getting your head around Netrunner is like trying to grab a fish in a river. It slips always just out of your reach, lets you seize it only for a moment. And just when you think you’ve really got it, brand-new cards are released, making new mechanics possible. It is not about the climb to dominance. It is not about getting better and better until you’re impervious. It’s not about winning, but about growing, laterally, like you’re sketching a map of a world that will never be finished being born.

I fell in love with this game because becoming good at it, and having fun at it, and making it mine, meant that winning stopped mattering at all.’

Onto the cards; On the corporation side you get four Corp specific starter sets (Haas-Bioroid, Jinteki, NBN and Weyland) along with a set of Neutral cards, mainly the all important Agendas. With the Runners you get three stater sets (Anarch, Criminal and Shaper) with a similar set of Neutral cards.

Each faction is neatly themed, as are their faction cards. Haas-Bioroid and Jinteki specialise in biotech and clones respectively while NBN runs world media and Weyalnd runs the numbers. The runner factions are self explanatory with Shapers out to build a better world for everyone.

In short, you get plenty in the core set to dip a toe or two, play a bunch of games and see where you want to go with the game. For £30 that’s a very good deal. So far I’ve only played as Weyland, Jinteki and Shapers. I’ll get plenty more games out of the set before NEEDING to pick anything else up. Wanting is different…..obviously!

Having played a bunch more games down at Enfield Gamers last night I understand the principles and tactics of the game far better. For the moment I want to try out each of the factions in the core set and what tactics suit them best. Also, having read around the net a bit this seems to be general advice i.e. try before you buy. There’s quite a few cycles out there now so it makes sense to go into things forearmed.

Rich has also pointed me towards Netrunners.co.uk which has formed today’s lunchtime reading, specifically this and this beginner article as well as a browse of a recommended deck builder.

Hopefully some of that was useful, for you as well as me ;)

Reasons to be Cheerful, 1, 2, 3!

Posted on August 30th, 2015 under , , , , , , . Posted by

Hello people,

One of the reasons we all engage in our hobby, and many others besides, is to find some escapism from the occasional harshness of real life. I often find that when life bites a bit harder than usual I often splurge on my various interests.

As such, behold!

I rarely get out of my pit early on a weekend but yesterday the lure of a Hound’s Tooth and buddies did the job. Three Khiraz join the party along with two monstrous TIE Punishers to join Thrawn’s Splinter Squadron. As such I spent an enjoyable morning popping card tokens and reshuffling my card folder (GEEK!!) whilst comtemplating the Slaver repaint.  Now that will be a labour of, geeky, love!

The Infinity pile has already been discussed. The second week of September has been booked as leave and I’m looking at a couple of ITS tourneys at Wayland in October. Always useful to have an aiming point!

So that just leaves Netrunner. I have a starter set and that’s it so far. I can myself making a big investment over time and to help myself out I’m going to go all Tale of the Net with a series of posts charting my introduction. True Tale of style I’m going to set myself a monthly budget of £30 and do my utmost to stick to it. As much as anything it should be a nice change of pace from X-Wing and Infinity posts ;)
Meanwhile here’s a Netrunner site I found that will form my lunchtime reading for a while.

Happy days ;)

Embrace the Chaos

Posted on August 25th, 2015 under , , , , , . Posted by

Nothing that dramatic in honesty but whilst attempting to simplify and progress my current projects I’ve actually managed, as many of us do, to increase the mountain whilst simultaneously finding other shiny things to run after…….

Firstly I’ve finally spent my birthday Element Games voucher on this lot;

I went for the Aguacile specialists the Tunguska Inventnors (the pandas are SO cool) and a couple of Zonds to round out the selection. The rest went on completing the scenery set with a three storey apartment, some holo ads, consoles and a dumpster which is to follow.

Additionally I’ve dug out another couple of AT-43 vehicles to add to the scenery set and also picked up a Moran Massai as I’ve realised just how good they could be. While I’m at a pair of Geckos have also made thier way onto the WANT list. Meanwhile I’ll be picking up about £100 of X-Wing Wave 7 on Saturday as well as renewing the car tax……..sigh!

I was already looking at taking a weeks leave in early September which is now likely to become scenery week. I’ll also paint a few of Rob’s bits to alleviate the mild guilt.

Moving swiftly on, Rich introduced me to Kaos Ball and the Netrunner LCG over the weekend.

Kaos Ball looked pretty much like another Blood Bowl / Dreadball clone when the Kickstarter came round so I didn’t really take a look. Apparently it’s aimed at novice / non gamers and it certainly comes across that way with simple, primary coloured graphics / print.

However, despite deceptively simple gameplay there is a lot more depth to the game than I expected. Card driven there’s a decent element of resource management and bluff. There are various cheat / power up cards with some drastic penalties if you get it wrong. Most impressively there’s multiple methods to score points, which ramp up as you play through the quarters which in themselves are timed by how many cards you’ve played.

As such there are quite a few variables knocking about that you have to pay attention to. All of a  sudden it wasn’t nearly as basic a game as I first thought. Probably still not a replacement for DB, if and when I get round to playing it again, but I’d happily play a few more games of it :)

Which brings us to Netrunner, which has already been registering on the fringe of my radar for a little while now. In honesty it was already hitting a lot of buttons for me. The background, imagery, concept and the fact that as a card game it’s straight out of the pack with little room required are all big wins. the only downside is its LCG nature and the potential need to catch up with the pack.

I’ll admit that I wanted this game to be good and I was HUGELY impressed. Learning as we went with pre-built decks meant we surely never got all the bells and whistles going but they weren’t necessary. There’s a great tech feel, and thrill, to the game.

You alternatively play as the Runner and the Corporation and both feel significantly different to play. As with many LCGs there are strong resource management elements but the big thing here is the feeling of paranoia and pressure that comes with it.

As I’m sure you’ve already guessed I forsee a fair bit of Netrunner in my near future :]

Top Gun

Posted on August 19th, 2015 under , , , . Posted by

Hello people, Fair warning this is not just another musings post but also one in which I seemingly big myself up, so pay attention and acknowledge my awesomeness!! ;) Returning from the X-Wing Scandinavian Nationals it has finally sunk in tha…

Scandi-licious part 3

Posted on August 16th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,Not a lot of chance to post yesterday as it was a very long intense day.First off Nigel took the Armada title to become Nordic, and as such European, Champion!For myself I ended up going 5-1 to claim 10th in the Swiss and my first top 16 c…

Scandi-licious part 2

Posted on August 14th, 2015 under , , , . Posted by

Greetings from Ballerup! Other than a slightly delayed flight the trip in was straight forward and uneventful.Rocking up at the venue this morning you could hear the event logistics continue to creak but at the end of the day Imperial Assault, Netrunne…

Scandi-licious prt 1

Posted on August 13th, 2015 under , , , . Posted by

Hello people,This was a mobile post from Nandos Gatwick south terminal as myself and Nigel set out to Copenhagen for the FFG Nordic Nationals. I’ve just noticed that it didn’t publish so this is some 30 hours delayed.Soon to join to a number of 186 Squ…

Little by Little

Posted on August 10th, 2015 under , , , . Posted by

Hello again people, No, not too much has happened since last time I showed you some actual figures. I’ve had some time but, in  honesty, haven’t always made the best of it as the coalface has been somewhat flinty recently. I have however finally c…

It’s a hard life ;)

Posted on August 3rd, 2015 under , , , , . Posted by

Hello people,So basically I spent the whole weekend gaming and I’m knackered. Definitely looking for a soft day in the office but ill be smiling so not a problem.Saturday myself and Rich headed down to Tonbridge Wells for the Totally Crit 3rd ITS tourn…

And now for something…..

Posted on July 31st, 2015 under Posted by

…..completely different.Another busy week elsewhere unfortunately but hey that’s life.Last Sunday was another X-Wing tourney this time run by Warboar down in Croydon, ostensibly as a celebratory event for 186 Squadron. Plenty of the  squadron we…

Tohaa

Posted on July 24th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello again and welcome to Rob’s Tohaa as previously promised / threatened  (delete as appropriate)I have to admit that I’m not so sure who is who other than a decending order of elite status. Command, rankers, auxiliaries and support from what I …

Age of…….Confusion

Posted on July 22nd, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,Brace yourself it’s another meandering musings post.So, as I don’t live under a rock I’ve been watching the community reaction to Age of Sigmar. On the face of it its been pretty polarised with plenty of RAGE to go with the usual froth.For…

Nomads

Posted on July 19th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,Sunday evening I finally set up a photo shoot for the To INFINITY and Beyond project.As such here are my Nomads, from bottom to top;- Mobile Brigada and Lupe Balboa proxy- Tomcats,  a big personal favourite of mine – Zero, Spektr…

Hit and Run

Posted on July 17th, 2015 under , , , , . Posted by

Hello people,Yes, yet another I haven’t done too much this week though that isn’t entirely true.Tuesday night at the club we ran through several rounds of an Infinity TAG mini game, that I shall attempt to link at some point, for which I did complete p…

WORK sucks. ……so make it better

Posted on July 13th, 2015 under , . Posted by

Hello people,I’ve not said much because there’s not been too much to say. Going back to work and having a few other bits on has meant very minimal Hobby-time.I’ve managed to build and base the Nomad support pack and Iguana but that’s been about it. I’v…

Beyond Thunderdome #1

Posted on July 5th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,

I have to admit that I enjoyed To INFINITY and Beyond so much that I couldn’t let it die. As such the ongoing project will become Thunderdome as an homage to much of my influence for the scenery set and my viewpoint on the game as grown up Necromunda. Also it should serve to stop me repearedly almost buying sets of Dark Future on Ebay!

First up I bought myself an Iguana as a birthday present. Father dearest has also procured some remotes, though I’m not sure which as yet. My Klingon fleet sold for £65 which will be recycled into more remotes. This will give me options for Hacker / Corrigedor lists upto 400 points and the intention to complete a box set per week.

Scenery will be a rolling project and the weeks progress has been getting the Micro Art Admin Block and Gaurd Tower put together and put through a few levels of spray. I still feel that I’m lying a bit of height but table time will tell. I have a few ideas brewing.

More cruise control rather than high pursuit :)

To little to late?

Posted on July 4th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,

What follows is an unashamed rant post. These are my opinions and I accept and stand by them.  I generally dont do tbis but on this occasion I need to vent, hopefullu in a constructive manner. I’m not whinging, as much as it might seem like it and if it does then fair enough.

Tonight being Thursday I headed down to Dark Sphere for some X-Wing. There’s currently a well themed campaign going on and I’ve taken the chance to run some different lists to see how they work. If you get the chance then I heartily recommend getting involved.

Running Kavil I played a couple of games losing both, one closely, the other not at all closely. I still had fun and tested some ideas.

Coming home I found the third and final wave of my Dreadball Extreme Kingdom Kickstarter on the doorstep. Surely this should be a joyous moment of nerdgasm, tearing open the box to inhale aue’de fresh plesin a day prior to. Not so much :/

What I actually did was open the box in disgust and dig out the contents so that I could snear at them! I then stacked the box in the Kickstarter section of my toys bookcase, which now measures at least three feet in height :(

I’m sure many of you are asking “why the rage hate Steve?”. Some of you may remember that I’ve loved this game and previously credited it with rejuvenating my hobby a couple of years ago. That’s right, I’ve have playing many, many games in both leagues and tournaments, much as I do X-Wing now.

Even as I became disenchanted with Mantic and their well documented crack addict employment of Kickstarter I kept my love of the game telling myself I saw the distinction between Mantic, Jake and the Dreadball community.

When the Extreme Kickstarter came up I told myself that I wasn’t going to pledge but pick stuff up as and when it was released. The KS deals haven’t always worked out as the best option , all of those “free” bonus figures never are and it’s not as if figure quality has improved along the way.

HOWEVER…..when I saw the fluff and ideas involved I  couldn’t stop so went in with a sweet spot £150 Frenzy pledge……LAST MARCH!!

Since then the only other project that’s treated me was poorly is Heroes of Normandie and they’re just two French blokes rather than a miniatures company with enough professional and clout to pull down Mars Attack. However you look at it that’s a major success for them but at what expense and to whom?
To me putting up a mission control simply isn’t enough.Keeping backers informed is laudable but it’s verged on the point of taking the pics.

In honesty I also backed Heroquest 25 which is also late and not saying a lot but I’m happy to wait given my fondness for the product and, again, they’re not a big figures company dividing opinion within the community. Fair and objective? No, but that’s my perogative. I’m sure Mantic don’t care about my rantings, or anyone else’s but that’s their perogative.

As with any Kickstarter I had a choice and spent my money. After that you’re locked in for the ride. Mantic have got my money but didn’t get my time which I’ve since spent on X-Wing and Infinity. As such I no longer have the time or inclination for Dreadball or Mantic. In honesty I’d be tempted to Ebay it all but who’d take it off me? By the nature of events the market is saturated.

At the end of the day I’m more annoyed at myself than anyone else. I knew better but let myself get sucked in anyway. I’ve backed other KS projects, mainly graphic novels, which have been well run by decent people and delivered what they promised. Dreadball Extreme has undoubtedly been my worst ever KS experience by a mile. As a result I simply don’t trust any other Toys KS and I won’t back them. By the time that deliver I doubt I’ll have the time or interest any more :(

Here endeth the rant, it’s been very cathartic and more about myself than trying to influence others. By making the public statement I’m far more likely to hold to my convictions.

On a related note I turned 40 yesterday, ful membership of the Grumpy Old Man Club confirmed :)

To INFINITY and beyond – Day 16

Posted on July 1st, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Okay people I’m back to the grindstone tomorrow so here’s the roundup.As below I got my Tomats and Reverend Moria finished to complete all of my Nomad force that I had at the be grinning of the project. Due a late start Rob’s Auxilliaries and TAG pilot…

To INFINITY and beyond – Day 16

Posted on June 30th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Taa daa……actual painted Nomads!!So thats 6 Agaucils, including Ms Balboa, my proxy Iventnor, my proxy Spektr sniper, my actual Spektr and my proxy Zero (more white) finished, varnished and everything for another 20 Painting Points.That leaves just …

To INFINITY and beyond – Day 15

Posted on June 29th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,A bit more of gap between posts but as I head back to work on Thursday things ramp up much as they often do. Since last time various bits of progress have been made.First I kind of cracked down at Dark Sphere last Thursday and made a numbe…

Just the two of us

Posted on June 28th, 2015 under , . Posted by

Hello people,

As a variation to the recent Infinity theme myself and Nigel G, aka The Dark Destroyer, took a trip to Dunstable for 5 rounds of flying casual. As a challenge we swapped regular roles Nigel runing a swarm while I went with a two ship build of Soontir Fell and Admiral Chirpy both loaded to the gills.

I’m more than happy with Soontir and have had previous success with the decimator. It’s a bit of a notorious net-list which I would normally generally avoid up curiosity won out. Despite having experience with both elements I felt shorn of my  customary swarm.

In short I ended up with a 100-nil win, a 100-nil loss, two close losses and a nil-nil draw which supports the belief that even net-lists need to be well flown.

Generally I know where I went wrong and what I forgot at times. I flew Soontir well but I kind of had to as I let Chirpy died too quickly too often, though dice did play their part at times. I’d been advised that with two ships ALWAYS play the safe option but a few moments of red mist proved crucial.

Overall it was good to give a two ship list a go. It increased my understanding playing with and against such lists, the day was pretty much dominated by them. I can see why Decimators have dropped down the meta list which itself makes me want to see what I can do with a similar list. Kenkirk has done well for me previously as has the Pope-Mobile so there are a few options

We can make it if we try ☺

To INFINITY and beyond – Day 10 prt 2

Posted on June 24th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,So technically I’ve slipped into day 11 but hey not by much and these are my guidelines I’m bending :) As below I’ve finished up 10 of Rob’s Tohaa. I went pretty much the box colour scheme, other than turning them all ginger for a bit…

To INFINITY and beyond – Day 10 part 1

Posted on June 24th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Okay, so another missed post but that kind of gets me back on track, kind of!

In the intervening period there has at least been some decent progress.

First up a £30 kids construction kit from Toys R Us has been a major find providing a mobile crane, dump truck, digger, JCB, skip, oil drums, signs and stop boards. Re-sprayed grey they’ll be detailed up a fit the industrial theme well.

Quite a bit of it got onto the table last night as well as various extras. Below is an objective crate, objective civilian, base markers and a pair of repeaters.

As well as all that I’ve, eventually  (with Charlie’s tech support) got the printer set up and sorted out all of my tokens.

On the brush front Rob’s Tohaa starter set is just awaiting highlights which I hope to post up later. Until then it’s back to earth taking the car for its MOT. Delight!

To INFINITY and beyond – Day 4

Posted on June 18th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Hello people,The dreaded slump has hit early and there’s not too much to report.In short the game with Rich has been rainchecked and the brushes have been idle other than touching up undercoat.On the positive I now have a wireless colour printer and a …

To INFINITY and beyond – Day 2

Posted on June 17th, 2015 under , , . Posted by

Okay people, welcome to the first update post :)In the last couple of days reasonable progress has been made on almost all fronts with a little bit of Shasvassti bonus in the mix.Construction, basing and undercoat of ALL figures WILL be completed tomor…