Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Who's in the box?

It feels like forever since I've written a blog post or played Malifaux. Now I'm back to blogging or at least trying to be. This isn't a "I burned out of Malifaux and I'm trying to recapture the love" post. I stopped playing Malifaux because I decided to put my house on the market and move out of London to Basingstoke. Various disasters have happened along the way and most of my collection remains in boxes in storage. I do have a crew packed in a KR multicase so hopefully I can actually get some games at a new club once I'm settled. This article is actually about why I chose  the only master I did to keep out of storage to play with. A "if you could only choose one master, who would it be and why?"

Thursday, 25 August 2016

When is a Resser not a Resser.

For most of my time through the breach I've been in camp Resser but as a change is always good I decided to change it up a bit... a little bit... a very little bit.

So I decided decided to give Marcus a Resser twist, the old beast master can already hire a decent handful of undead beasties so its just a case of fitting him into the recycling way of thinking.

Fluff wise its not too far of a stretch, Marcus is an old professor revived by his studies in the wilds of Malifaux. He's already experimented with bringing beasts back from the dead resulting in the jackalope. (an experiment he'd never been able to repeat, proving that ressers are the most cleverist).

Monday, 22 August 2016

State of the Project Queue!

Hey guys! I had a few (OK one) request on Twitter to see more of the projects I'm working on currently. So as I'm never one to dissapoint my literally tens of fans, I thought I'd do a quick round up of what what projects I have going on and in what state they're in.

1. Ponies - Status:  Mostly Completed.

The "Mane" Six
If you follow my Twitter at all (@Elessarion30) you've probably seen pictures of these! They are from 2 Kickstarters run by a very small but awesome company called Slap Miniatures. The first one was called Pewter Ponies and was a very simple set of sculpts, mostly generic ponies although if you're a fan of a certain magical cartoon about friendship, you MIGHT think a few of them look familiar. The second Kickstarter was named The Evil Ponies, because if you've got good ponies then you have to have villains too! This campaign was certainly more ambitious with the sculpts and included the 4 ponies of the Apocalypse (yes Death has got a small Death of Rats on his back, it's awesome), a necromancer and skeleton ponies and 3 witch ponies. There was also Dr Pones (Best. Pun. Ever) and his faithful assistant Rocquefort. There's also a D&D type group from the first campaign, including a bard, thief, paladin, wizard, enchantress and a barbarian.

Pony adventurers
Ponies. Why'd it have to be ponies?

Ponies of the Apocalypse!
These were a really fun painting project as they gave me a chance to go wild with some bright paint schemes and also a chance to practice my fairly terrible freehand to try and paint on cutie marks for some of the ponies. They're mostly finished, I just need to add grass and flowers to some of the bases.

 2. Small Female Warband - Status: In Progress

Another ongoing project that I've thrown myself into this year is to do a warband for various skirmish games (Frostgrave, Open Combat etc) made up entirely of the smaller races. Yeah sure, elves may LOOK all willowy and graceful but honestly, they go through WAY too much conditioner. And lying around languidly on tree branches gets boring after a while. Plus splinters. So. Many. Splinters. So I decided that my warband should be something of a self portrait band and be made up of female dwarves, gnomes and halflings.

This project all got started when I came across another cool Kickstarter campaign by the fabulous team of Oathsworn Miniatures called Heroines in Sensible Shoes - which was to raise funding for a smallish range of sculpts, all female adventurers but without the "chainmail bikini" look which has become a bit of a trope in fantasy. All these female miniatures were clad in sensible adventuring gear and no high heels allowed!

I eventually pledged for the female halfling rogue from the first Kickstarter and from the second campaign I went for the gnome wizard, dwarf queen and a forest gnome ranger from the first campaign that I'd missed the first time around. To flesh out the band I've bought some amazing miniatures from other places like Reaper (care of the fab Bad Squiddo Games), Hasslefree Miniatures and Otherworld Miniatures. While I've only painted one of the miniatures so far, the band is looking in great shape and I can't wait to get more done.

3. Malifaux Resurrectionists - Status: In Progress

Don't panic, I've not gone over to the filthy green side of Malifaux. One of my fellow Abnormalifaux bloggers (Bad Luck & Blood) is in the process of moving house and so has had his hobby time cut for the forseeable future so I offered to step in and paint some miniatures for him. There's a nice mixture of Resurrectionists as well as parts of his plastic Leveticus crew so it's a chance for me not only to do a favour for a hobby pal but gives me a chance to paint some new miniatures I wouldn't otherwise get the chance to put a paintbrush to.

In our little group of bloggers we have a running joke that his favourite colour is pink so I've been trying to incorporate that into some of the miniatures. While it doesn't work for every mini, I've tried to find places where it seems to fit.

There's a whole bunch more small projects I've got on the go - an ongoing stream of Batman miniatures for my friend Lori, some Sisters of the Thorn and an Artemis stand-in for Of Gods and Mortals, Greeks, monsters and knights for 7th Voyage and that's not to mention so many of the random minis I bought just for painting!

2 Boudis from Hasslefree Miniatures

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Into the Warzone!

Yes it is I, your intrepid explorer! I have returned from a perilous and harrowing journey to Outside of London and into the Middle Lands North of the M25. Basically, I went to a tournament in Warzone Workshop, located in the exotic location known as Northampton.

For those playing along at home, I'd been to a Story Event run at Warzone Workshop at the tail end of last year and had a great time. This time it was a standard 50SS Fixed Faction event run by the local Henchman Ben Harris. And I'd volunteered my services as an assistant TO and spare player for the day. Let the games begin!

We ended up with 25 players after having a last minute drop out so Ben and I decided to rotate playing and being admin, which gave us both a chance to relax and get a drink given it was shaping up to be a very warm day and while the venue is perfectly fine, being on the top floor of an indoor shopping centre means that there's not a lot of options for ventilation. We did our best with strategically placed fans but the hard truth is that putting 27 people in any confined space for a long period of time on a hot day and it's inevitable that the temperature is going to be on the high side!

 We had a good mixture of players from different areas - there was a strong showing from the local meta, including my frequent travel buddies Karl McConnell and Craig Woods, Graeme Nicholls and a few new faces I hadn't met before. We were fortunate also to have amongst us The Man, The Beard, The Legend that is Ritch Keeling. Ritch is currently fufilling a bet to play this year's Nightmare Edition crew at Nationals so he was getting some McCabe practice in. If you'd like to find out a bit more about his bet and the road to Nationals then make sure to check out his blog Brutal Efficacy for more details. Tis a good read. And last but not least we were all blessed by the presence of the Lord of Malifaux Mike Marshall (aka Captain Troy Tempest) who had made the trip over from Norfolk with the ever-lovely Lee Battrick. Truly, we were honoured.

First round and due to the drop out, poor Graeme drew the short straw and had to play the first ringer - me. As the strategy was Reckoning, I decided to take Ophelia and a fairly elite crew including Mancha, Trixiebelle, Merris, and Francois. For my schemes I decided on Leave Your Mark (between Merris and Trixie this seemed doable) and Undercover Entourage on Trixie. Graeme had moved onto Arcanists for this event and had picked Kaeris for this game. Ultimately I couldn't do enough damage to his crew to score for Reckoning (bloody Joss. Stupid Armour. Sodding Johana with a sodding heal!) and Graeme played very smart to kill Trixie when I moved her too far forward and left her in range of the Oxfordian Mages. The game ended in a very decisive win for Graeme but it was a very fun game, despite me still being half asleep and flustered so apologies to Graeme for that!

Next up was lunch and the painting contest. The standard was incredibly high from all the entrants and out of the field of 25 players, we had 14 entries for the contest. That's pretty incredible and really good to see so many people making the effort to have nicely painted minis!

Round 2 and I'd tagged in Ben as ringer so I could take a break and have a sit down, which was quite welcome at this point of the day! I also managed to have a wander round and see how everyone was getting on - the atmosphere was very relaxed and there was a lot of laughing from various tables which is always a good sign everyone's enjoying themselves.

Amusing table numbers are a common theme at Ben's events!
 Onto the final round and I jumped back in to play Nick, who was a local I hadn't met as he'd been taking a few months break from Malifaux and had only just started attending events again. This round was Extraction and just for ease of playing I decided to go with Ophelia again, but a slightly different crew including Gracie to tank some damage and a Rooster Rider to try and get 3VP for Leave Your Mark/Convict Labour which were the two schemes I picked. I was a little worried as Nick was running Von Schill, a Master I don't have a lot of familiarity with. Plus his chosen crew had an awful lot of bulletproof models in it, not ideal against a shooty Master like Ophelia! It was another fun game and Nick was a really lovely opponent to play against, even though the game went fairly definitively my way, he managed to keep laughing and joking - especially when he managed to get the Abomination summoned in by Rusty Alyce to kill Mancha Roja. Gutsy little guy! Finished up 8-0 to me.

So the end of another event and another fun day. Time to hand out the prizes! As is usual at the Warzone events, the prize support was excellent, with a selection of boxes and other goodies for the raffle as well as some lovely trophies for the top 3 in both painting and playing.

So once the dust had settled we had a top 3 in the painting of Hayden Smith (3rd) The Lord of Malifaux Mike Marshall (2nd) and in 1st place was Craig Woods with his gorgeous Whiskey Golem. Sadly I didn't get a picture as I was rushing around during lunch but it looked amazing, as did all the entries. It was a really high standard contest and everyone's entries looked great.

For the Best Sport we had Karl McConnell who is starting to make a habit of being in the running for these awards. Not sure why.....(I kid I kid!). So well done to him as well, despite struggling with a bad back all day!

Finally we had the gaming prizes. Starting with the medal for Best Loser we had my 3rd round opponent Nick, who seemed thrilled with his medal and promptly put it round his neck. He told me later he'd had a really fun day and was planning to come down to the local gaming nights more often so it'll be good to see him at more events in the future. 3rd place we had one of the local guys Steve Wilson, 2nd place was the ever lovely Stuart Snares (even if we did give him a bit of abuse about it, all in good fun!) and our overall winner was Rich Bream, another local lad who has been using Neverborn recently.

In summary, I can highly recommend the events at Warzone Workshop. The shop is in Northampton town centre so there's plenty of parking nearby and it's not a terribly long walk from the train station, which gets a regular service from Euston for all you London type people. I had a lot of fun and I'm hoping to be able to come along and help out again someday (hey someone has to get Ben to events on time :p).

Can't please everybody but... need to be a dick about it.

It's time for another squirrel scaring rant, take a deep breath and hide the nuts.

At an estimate the UK population is 65,164,534 and the UK malifaux tournament population is roughly 390 which amounts to around 0.0006%. Now within this tiny group of like minded people we have some how developed a hundred sub groups and a twisted class system.
Now coming into to gaming I expected some divide. Assuming between different game systems and then between factions within that system. Growing up in a sports mad environment this made sense football fans think rugby fans are toffs, rugby fans think football fans are animals and football and rugby fans agree cricket fans are dull gits. Then within that Spurs fans don't mix well with Gooners and Chelsea fans don't mix well will anyone.
All this I expected, some piss taking, some friendly rivalry but still a general community (anyone who's stayed with my rants for a while knows I use that term a lot).

Monday, 15 August 2016

We're all going on a summer showdown...

So yesterday (all my troubles seemed so...) I headed down the Southend arterial road to Wayland games to take part in the warmest of the showdown series. For those that are unaware the showdown series of events are a run of four seasonally named 50ss tournaments hosted by Wayland and run by Mike "Lord of Malifools" Marshal. The events always draw a nice crowd and are a great mix of new and old players.

The morning routine for showdown is fairly set now; wake up, tea, breakfast, wash, dress, drive, more tea, second breakfast, one more tea... And we're in time to register "Ressers please Mike" and say hello to people.
The saying hello to people seems to be part of the day that gets longer every time, loads of new faces, either people completely new to the game or just new to showdowns which is great to see. Then the regulars who it's always good to see. Some of the regular faces were missing this time whether this was due to the wave 4 ruling, other commitments or alien abduction we may never know (my money is on aliens)

Friday, 12 August 2016

So you're thinking of going to a tournament...

I'm going to do a quick (cough filler cough cough) guide to going to tournaments. Its not a guide to winning as I wouldn't know where to start, it's just a guide to not embarrassing yourself too much.

Step 1. Is simple anyone can do it. Buy a ticket, if at all possible buy it early. The earlier you buy a ticket the easier you make life for the TO and the more time you have to be excited.

Step 2. Make sure you can make it the event: get a pass, book the holiday, be out on bail.

Step 3. Read the rule pack. If there is a rule pack read it, if there isn't read the event description and ask any questions you have before the event. If on the day you are surprised by something that was clear in the rule pack you deserve for a wasp to land in your pint.

Step 4. Know where you are going. In the age of google maps and smart phones it doesn't take too much to work out in advance how you're getting to an event.

Step 5. Know when you are starting. Get there on time, early is better but at least get there in time to register

Step 6. Not vital but sleep the night before, and maybe don't have a night of hot curries and vodka. No one will thank you for being tired, hungover and stinking.

Step 7. Wash everything, wash it again if you're not sure. Clean body, clean hair (if you have it), clean clothes, fresh underwear. Antiperspirant, deodorant, perfume, or an air freshener if thats what it takes. Brush your teeth as well remember people will what to take to you don't make them regret it.

Step 8. Read your cards, know your crew and read the strats and schemes. Basically know your shit. You don't need to be a top flight perfect mind wonder kid just don't spend 10 minutes reading something that you should just need a reminder of.

Step 9. Show up. Seems simple but you'd be surprised

Step 10. Talk to people. Its supposed to be fun you're in a room of like minded people. Chat, say hi, ask questions. Most people aren't dicks.

Step 11. Don't be a dick and if you find yourself being a dick, stop it. General rule of thumb is if you saw what you're doing on a soap opera would you think that person need to be mysteriously hit by a bin lorry on a sunday night? if yes then calm it the hell down.

Step 11.b Remember: Don't be a dick and if you find yourself being a dick, stop it.
Step 12. Win or lose gracefully. This fits into not being a dick but don't sulk or gloat or be a child (even if you are one).

Step 13. Help pack up. It doesn't take much but a TO has given up their day to run something for you the least you can do is help them pack stuff away (nicely don't just throw stuff in a pile).

Well I'll leave it there I'm sure I missed plenty but that can always go in another post. Enjoy.

Thursday, 4 August 2016

Hey boy, Hey girl, superstar Nico here we go...

A couple more games with Nciodem done and a couple more learning experiences (losses). So out of six games with the one legged wonder I'm up to two win and four losses. I'm getting the hang of Nico's various different abilities and upgrades but not quite there for how to convert that into VP. I'll get to that and where I'm head after I give a brief run down of the most recent games.

This was a rare bit of non event day faux when a few of us decided to bunk off being adults and head to town to play toy soldiers. There ended up being eight Malifaux players on a random Wednesday afternoon at Dark Sphere, which was great fun having loads of 'faux chat going on.

Monday, 1 August 2016

Re-e-animate when the crowd say bo...

Time to continue my trials with the godfather of soul (less zombie hordes)...

Since my last Nico post I played three games, winning two and losing one (an amazing result for me).

First up I played against our resident BFG Francois with his Shen Long crew. I'd made a few changes to the list since my first game.

-Maniacal laugh
-Love thy Master

I'd added love thy Master to give summoned models companion. Which I found really useful, being able to use a model before it can be smooshed into zombie juice is great. I'd either run them off somewhere safe or smack someone before they smacked me.


-Corpse bloat

Rogue Necromancy
-Take back the night

Drawing more cards is always fun.


Rotten Belle

I'm not your usual rotten belle cheer leader like a lot of resser players but in a crew that needs you in their little bubble of death they're ideal. 
-Unnerving aura

Condition removal and a big hammer, what's not to love? Add to that I'm quite pleased with my recent paint job on her its win win.