5/19/2011

Side Project

Let it be known at the beginning of this post: I am not boycotting Games Workshop or quitting Warhammer 40,000. I'm still very much into 40K now as I ever have been before. That being said, Warhammer 40,000 is a game of medium to large scale battles, with no true progression. In it you essentially play a general, sending your forces to war.

What I'm currently interested in is being a character. That's right, I'm looking to get back into RPGs.

Yes, I know there's Rogue Trader, Dark Heresy, and Deathwatch, but if I'm to start something different, I'd like it to be in an entirely separate universe.

I already own Dungeons & Dragons v3.5 and Rifts. My problems are the communities. Dungeons & Dragons and Rifts can be amazingly fun, but it's relatively hard to find a good gaming group. Especially for Rifts, which in my opinion is a better system and universe than D&D has to offer. But that's just my opinion.

I'm thinking about getting into BattleTech. I like the concept of having giant robot vehicles battling it out, and then progressing my character through the MechWarrior system.

Call me crazy, but I don't always want to be the commander overlooking a battlefield. Sometimes I want to be the guy on the front lines risking life or limb for my faction.

I've ordered the BattleTech 25th Anniversary boxed set, so we'll see what comes of it, if anything. For all I know, it could end up like my Magic: The Gathering gaming: non-existent.

5/17/2011

The Folly of Games Workshop


Honestly, I'm not one to rant against GW, nor am I a fanboy. I've been in the hobby for five years now, so I'm fairly used to the price hikes and absurd business tactics. But for the longest time, I knew that tabletop gaming was a niche hobby that was expensive to begin with. I realized that we don't buy Land Raiders weekly, nor add 10-man squads to our forces on a monthly basis.

However, this time I think they've managed to sink their ship, and my frustration with them has peaked to the point where I must vocally condemn their marketing decisions.

Let me explain why I believe that this year could easily be the financial downfall of Games Workshop.

1) Introducing Citadel Finecast. Yes, we're all happy that metals are being replaced with some form of plastic or resin. It'll be much easier to work with, and should've been cheaper for the consumer. This is not the case, sadly, as GW has decided to increase their prices yet again on all previously metal blisters for the convenience of re-casting them as plastic.

2) Another annual price increase on everything else. From codices to box sets, and even starter kits, the prices are increasing from 25¢ to $15. When I started this hobby, in early 2006, I bought the fourth edition starter kit (Battle for Macragge) for an affordable $45. Now the price for fifth edition's starter kit (Assault on Black Reach) will be increased to $99. That's more than double the cost! And yes, I realize it comes with "so much more", but this is a starter kit, not a "value box". GW should've realized this when deciding what models to put in it.

3) Forcing European stores to stop selling outside the EU. Before, GW had stopped online retailers from doing many things: having shopping carts, underselling their products, using GW's images on their store's site. But now they've taken it a step too far, I feel. They shouldn't really care who the independent retailers are selling to, so long as their product is selling and they're still getting their large chunk of the profit.

4) Killing the hype. For some bizarre reason, GW has decided not to inform retailers ahead of time about new releases. This is a poor decision all around. First, there's no hype for the new product. Second, the store won't be able to take preorders and thus won't be able to inventory their shelves correctly. Third, considering how expensive this hobby is becoming, people won't be able to save up for the product to buy it on release day. Think of how many teens play this hobby and have to do chores, or save their allowance, to afford anything. Even us adults usually have to skip a few meals or cut back in other areas, or even work overtime, to purchase any new stuff these days.

It's not that I'm tired of GW. I love their games and their products, especially their novels and books. I would prefer to see them continue developing the games I enjoy playing. And no, I'm not switching over to Warmachine or Hordes out of frustration. But I feel like Games Workshop aren't just shooting themselves in the foot, they're practically swallowing a live grenade with these decisions. I'm just hoping they'll survive such foolish actions.

5/10/2011

Never Despair

Tonight's game was too close for comfort. Yes, I won, which is fantastic because now I've won more games than I've lost (see Battle Tally); but it was barely won.

To start with, I think this was my first game against Space Wolves since their redone codex. A lot of people are saying Space Wolves are overpowered. They also said that about Blood Angels and Imperial Guard.

The Blood Angels are a fair challenge to me, but I can beat them. With the Imperial Guard, I'm going to have to agree they're a bit overpowered. The Space Wolves, on the other hand, are undoubtedly the most overpowered force I've ever seen!

Space Wolves and Imperial Guard are the only forces I've faced so far that are stupidly overpowered. I really don't want to play either of them again, unless it's a mega-battle or team game.

I don't remember too many specifics of his 2,000-point force, but I believe it was comprised of three or four Wolf Priests, a few squads of Grey Hunters in Rhinos, a Drop Pod with more Grey Hunters, two squads of Long Fangs (mostly with missile launchers), a Dreadnought, a squad of three Thunderwolves, a single Thunderwolf, and a squad of scouts.

In absolute honesty, if we weren't playing objectives (with a Dawn of War deployment), he would've tabled me with ease. I also lucked out by destroying his Rhinos early on.

Red Dragons versus red Space Wolves?!

Thankfully, in the last turn, his only Troops choice within 3" of the objective marker was falling back. I won by a technicality, 1-0.

Unfortunately my camera's batteries died at the beginning of turn two, so I didn't really get any pictures tonight. Next time I'll be sure to bring spares!

5/05/2011

Bring It On

I won. Again. I'm having a difficult time believing it. Are my tactics improving? Is it luck? Who knows. What I do know is I nearly tabled another opponent, this time playing as Tyranids.

Deployment as usual.

There were three Hive Guard but they died rather quickly.

My Commander probably wouldn't have survived this...

...But my Devastators neutralized the Warriors before they could assault.

By turn five, I had captured two of the three objectives, and all that remained of his force was a Hive Tyrant accompanied by a Tyrant Guard, and a couple Zoanthropes locked in close combat with my Dreadnought.

When rolling to see if the game would go on, we rolled a one. Game over. Victory is mine!