Thursday, 24 March 2022

Returning through the breach

 Hey people, it’s been a long time since the old Malifaux blog has been in action but I’m back gaming in the world of Wyrd so I thought it was about time the blog got some action too. (After starting this I realised how rusty I am blogging just to warn you early)

Unlike the old days I’m not playing Malifaux, I dropped out before M3e and never made it back. This time I’m playing Wyrd’s other (better?) game The Other Side. Which is an army scale game instead of skirmish, you take the role of a commander or often two commanders in a full game and several units of soldiers, maybe some artillery, and if you’re doing it right a Titan unit that stomps all over the battlefield.

Before I go into a full rundown of the game it might help to explain how I ended up here. I’ll start by admitting that I was less than appreciative of TOS when it hit Kickstarter, I couldn’t see the need for it and it seemed too bulky, with the full armies and massive models. I was vocal in my dislike and once it funded I promptly forgot all about it.

Fast forward a year or two and we’re in a pandemic I’m at home, between games and out of things to paint, a few old Malifaux friends are talking about TOS, a few models catch my eye and I’m curious so I have a brief look online and order a single model. Just as a painting project obviously, Kassa arrives, not the crispest of models but ideal for what I wanted, something quick to paint. Turns out she’s a joy to paint, simple work but looks good.

Well now it would be rude not to buy the rulebook right? Just to learn what I have, maybe watch a few videos, ask a few questions… then before I knew it I have a full force and lockdown is relaxing and I’m online looking for games. 

Now I’ve had a few games and the game turns out to be great. It’s really fun without being silly, it’s tactical without being confusing. 

So now I’m back where I was with ‘faux all those years ago arranging games, introducing players, asking Arran how all the actual rules work. 

Okay so that’s how I got so now I can give a run down of what the game is and how it works 

First thing you’ll need is to pick a faction, there are currently four main choices for this split into Earth and Malifaux categories.

You have Kings Empire, they’re the British empire army they have lots of guns

The other earth option is Abyssinia, a technology advanced African civilisation, they are your elites.

Next there is the Malifaux options. The cult of the burning man are as the name suggests a cult that worships the burning man in the sky above London. They’re full of movement tricks and magic

The last main faction are the Gibbering Horde, a endless stream of sea monsters that got pulled through a breach and dropped on Earth, they are hungry and they’re a horde. 

A game is played as either single commander for small games or two commanders for full games, each commander brings along a certain amount of scrip (points) usually 25 but stronger commanders bring less and weaker one bring more. This is a really simple way to balance out stronger leaders.

Once you have your commanders and your scrip you can hire a company, when you hire a unit you don’t do it by individual models you hire a full unit, this can be nine models split over three teams to make a single unit or it could be a single model. Having to hire in fixed unit sizes means there's less wasted points also less spam.

So you have an army now, I guess you need a war? At set up you and your opponent both flip a card, these two cards give you your initiative, your deployment, and your operation. Nice and easy, there is only operation going on at a time so there is a lot less to focus on than with Malifaux ( I know I keep comparing against 'faux but I assume if you are here you know 'faux). I'm not going to go into detail about the operations as that seems like a separate post.

Playing the game is nice and fast paced, unless you're both playing very cagey you can start fighting and mostly start scoring VP straight away. And despite the size of the armies on the tables things move quickly, when you activate a unit the first thing you do is give them an order. Either Advance (move and action) Focused effort (move and gain a token) Rush (move and move). Each team in a unit gets the same order but can move independently (within 8inchs) and take separate actions.

Because of the size of the units and the ability to reinforce (if you have a reinforcement token then during clear up each turn you can add up to two models back to a unit) when you need to this isn't really a game of wiping armies off the table (but you can if you really try) the focus is more of giving tough options and scoring VP.

There are more things involved like upgrades, envoys, stratagems, etc but this gives you a rough idea of
the game and how I ended up back here. I'm going to try and make this a regular thing again whether you read it or not. The next post will be a run down of how my Abyssinia force has come together and what I plan to do next with them.

We've had a couple of local meet ups to play which have been going well and a few of us are chatting about the idea of setting up a tournament in the near future which should be fun.  

So give me a shout if you're playing TOS too, share your painting models with me, and hopefully I'll be back soon with another post.

Friday, 9 November 2018

Next Gen Party

So yesterday I took my life in my hands and run a D&D session for a pair of nine year olds, and surprisingly it went well.

I have a bit of experience DMing and I also have some experience keeping my daughter entertained (it's more art than science) so in theory I had the skill set to do this. I practice I had no idea how it would go. Both kids seemed keen to give it a try, my Sprog knows I play and often watches Critical Role with me (which did mean she was expecting Mercer level DM skills) Friend of Sprog knows a bit less about D&D but apparently has seen it on Big Bang Theory, so not completely unprepared.

Wednesday, 31 October 2018

Haaaave you met Spire?

So it’s been a while, how’ve you been? Me? Oh same old same old...

Ok awkward small talk out of the way. I thought as I’ve been randomly prattling on about it to anyone who’ll listen, I’d dig up the old blog and put all my ramblings about a game called Spire in one place.

To start let’s run through what Spire is: Spire is a tabletop role playing game using D10s. If you’ve ever seen nerds playing dungeons and dragons then this is a similar concept but with different nerds rolling different dice.

The actual mechanics of it I’ll get to later, before that I’ll share the best bit the world.

Spire is a city in a tower in a dark fantasy world. Imagine if you took London and instead of having all the different boroughs next to each other you stacked them up one atop the other and wrapped it all ancient angry walls.

Monday, 23 April 2018

Wolf in the hall

So this year I thought I post a quick review of Salute, but as I've done this before I thought I'd let someone a bit more excited about it share her thoughts.

My eight year old daughter and first time blogger Wolf (not her real name I'm not that cool/cruel of a parent)

Thursday, 12 April 2018

Harlow is it me your looking for.

It’s been awhile but it’s time for a tournament report! (Waits patiently while you all recover from the shock)

It’s very odd as this isn’t Malifaux as my usual tournament write up, nor is it in one of my usual tournament venues. This does mean I can’t just copy and past the usual report and change the name of the event.

It’s was time for my first Guild Ball event! About a month before I had managed to grab the last ticket for the very popular Harlow Homerun 3, this may have been a bit over eager on my part as to that point I’d played two games of season three and had one model painted of the Goldsmiths. But always up for a challenge (that’s a lie I’m never up for a challenge I’d prefer a nap to be honest) I grabbed a ticket, asked loads of questions, watched some YouTube videos, and painted late into the night to prepare myself for the big day.

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Goldsmiths are gold!

Okay in place of actually learning to play the game my time has been taken up with painting my "Goldsmith" team for the fast approaching Guild ball tournament Harlow Homerun III.

I'm almost at my tournament ten, which might have been chosen more for what I wanted to paint rather than any idea of tactical sense.

I've decided to throw up a few picture of the team so far. Partly because is quick and easy content and also because people seems interested in the progress.

First up was Anvil, I enjoyed painting him as there are lots of nice big clear details and room for another attempt at tattoo which one day I will get the hang of.

Monday, 26 March 2018

Bust out the rage...

I realised in all the excitement of doing nothing in particular that I never got around to writing up a post about the Rage bust I had the pleasure of painting.

This very cool bust was a gift from my D&D group (I say gift, they say bribe to not drop a dozen angry dragons on them). He's an offical Guild Ball bust produced by BrokenToad who I'm a huge fan of. The bust did take a bit of work to prep, there was a few tabs that needed removing, mould lines and flash to clean but nothing too bad.

Due to the terrible weather i then had to wait patiently (not my strong point) to get the angry fella primed. I kept the hand separate so that I could still get to the areas behind easily.

Thursday, 22 March 2018

Guildball re match

Okay so somehow I appear to be back playing Guildball, back in season one I gave it a go with high hopes and good intentions but it never really clicked. All the games I had were fun but also forgettable. I always felt a bit like a spectator to the match instead of a player.

Swing back to now and due to my break up with Malifaux I’ve decided to give it another chance, already season three feels like a better game (based on my two muddled games so far) I’ve jumped in with a new team as then I can partly blame my previous failures on Union instead of myself.

I’ve decided to go with Blacksmiths, not because of their clever play style or anything quite so rational. Instead it was because I’d been practicing my NNM and was looking for something to use it
on. I decided to go with a different look than I’d seen and paint them up in gold effectively making them “Goldsmiths” (... honestly that thought process is the whole reason I’m going back to Guildball, and knowing my luck Steamforged will release a Goldsmith Guild next voiding my genius)

Now I haven’t played enough to offer any sort of tactical analysis of the Goldsmiths so instead my next few post will be mainly about painting the team and also preparing for my first Guildball tournament... oh yeah that’s my other genius plan, to “motivate” me to actually play I’ve signed up to a tournament. (In for a penny, in for a crushing defeat. Like the old saying goes).

Monday, 29 January 2018

D&D: the journey begins - a starting guide to D&D pt1

I've been super quiet about Malifaux recently. For various reasons getting a load of models to central London with a load of equipment is just too time consuming. When I started Malifaux it was an easy to access skirmish game. You could have a couple of crew boxes, a few supplemental boxes, cards, tape measure and maybe a few tokens.
Now though the game has ballooned in a huge range and I can't really keep up in a way that is enjoyable. I'll still do some painting and hopefully some casual play.
Luckily the group decided to do some D&D. I was a bit curious and so I decided to give it a try. I was almost instantly hooked. Here was a game without the limitations of the table top. A game that rewarded the effort of making a background, being imaginative and focused on a social gathering.
This is now my game of choice. I'd like to share my journey with you. In this series, I'll cover how to get started, a guide to getting a character to the table, the pros and cons of optimisation, why you might want to kick someone out of a group and a better way to handle it, the various accessories, podcast reviews and YouTube including the mighty Critical Role.
Let's get a couple of questions out of the way before we get started on getting started.

What is Dungeons and Dragons?