29 July 2009

Sorry about the hiatus.

Work and home have been slightly busy, but I have some in progress projects as well as an FoF WWII AAR I want to put up. Am bringing someone new into the fold and hoping all is well. It's been a lot of fun lately. In any event, look for more here soon.

17 July 2009

A Wargamer's Philosophical Journey

Hello all,
Since I last wrote, I recently got a MP3 player from Sony for my birthday (thanks Mom!) and in between enjoying movie soundtracks, Evanescence, AC/DC and Billy Joel, I have been enjoying the fine Meeples and Miniatures podcasts from Neil Shuck. I really got a lot out of the "View from the Veranda" shows he did with Henry Hyde, editor of Battlegames magazine. The shows were full of erudite discussion that has had me thinking the last two days..Henry's assertions during the second show, which was on ethics and morality in gaming was correct about GW's background being abhorrent, more so than historicals in some cases, and that it's not written from any sort of literary idea, but from a marketing background. The discussion also about the differences in UK and US gaming cultures are also profound. I like the point made that it is extremely difficult to break into the US market, and that most folks are forced to play what's popular because that's what the stores are carrying, and that's what they're playing.

Now before somebody says "Dear god, Panzer's become a pinko!" or something, hear me out. Games where the background is "war for the hell of it" tend to run out of ideas fast, and often require a reset with, you guessed it, a cataclysmic war that does little but cause the game to hemorrhage fans like an arterial bleed. Some of you can guess what games I am referring to, but I won't call them out. I've done that enough.

I understand, companies need to make money, but does it have to be at the expense of a good story? I dunno. But enough of my lamentations. Here's what I am vowing to do about it.

1. I intend to follow my heart when it comes to gaming. I'll play what I enjoy, doing it the way I want and not marrying myself to a single game system like a sycophant.

2. I intend to not let myself get stuck only buying "THE APPROVED LINES". If somebody makes figures for the period better, then by god, I will buy them. I applaud Battleground/Flames of War for bending here. I understand their "no pictures on the website" policy, they are trying to make money, after all, but understanding, it might be cheaper/more feasible to go with QRF or Old Glory, for example (a strength of historicals).

3. I intend to support games that tell you two things, One "Play the game, not the rules" and two "Don't like it, change it!" Among those I can think of doing well right now are Too Fat Lardies, Ambush Alley Games, Ground Zero Games, Specialist Military Publications, to name a few. I think the new outcome driven rules get to a realistic outcome without a lot of hassle. They are adaptable, hell, with Ambush Alley's Force on Force, it's a case of WHAT CAN'T IT DO! It's the Gerber tool of wargaming. Another good rules set is Fistful of Tows II which has SPEED as it's mantra. You really can do a division in contact game in three hours. Name a sci-fi game that can match that lately. The sci-fi market has sadly gone in the other direction, going so crunchy and enamored of the toys the troops are using that they forget that it's still up to the scared kid with the bayonet to take the ground in the end.

4. If I don't like something...out it goes. You all know my issues with certain background fluff with a game I won't mention. Well, when I get the time..I am going to write my own. Already doing that with some like minded friends for Twilight 2000 based on stuff that came out after the Cold War ended. Once you buy that gaming product, it's yours. Use it as you will, if you can't use it, sell it and find something better!

We need to demand excellence from our hobby, especially now with dollars tighter. I am tired of spending $40+ on gaming products and getting little meat on the bones. The above manufacturers deliver more meat than anybody these days, and even with AAG's price rise, I'd stack Ambush Alley or Force on Force up against some of the more popular commercial products...I think AA and FoF would beat them silly.

15 July 2009

A slight rant- It's bad enough they're killing machines that won't stop!

They have to eat you now too?

Story from Fox here

Great, now we're gonna have to worry about Zombies that take a AT-4 to stop. Fun. I can imagine the scene now...

On scene battalion commander to techie: Ok, son, so the warbots got a computer virus? How does this translate to it killing and eating my men?

Techie: Well sir, it seems the computer virus told the bots one word...brains.

Yeah I know, groan worthy..but would the Terminator have been the same if we knew Arnie wasn't just trying to kill Sarah, but devour her too?

I love cross-genres...but sometimes they give me headaches.

13 July 2009

A shout out!

Two of my gaming buddies have had it a bit rough lately...and let's face it...with things the way they are, we could all use a bit of a pick-me-up. Here's a shout out to Murph..best of luck finding employment...and if it's in this area...then not only good, but maybe, finally we might meet in the flesh? Don't be a stranger Murph.

And then, CLDecker, who's been a good friend and just a hell of a guy lately. His health isn't always the best, and bad news with some deaths in his family have not helped. I wish him the best, and if he wants to talk, I am here.

And, another shout out to Combat Wombat...he's shutting down his company of the same name to go serve his country in his day job...good luck, protect yours...kick theirs.
And, thanks.

Salud guys!

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Organizing Blues, Part 2

Things didn't turn out SO bad...the bad news is I will probably need more Litko flex steel bottoms...the good news? As I transition over to the Wargames Accessories steel bases, that need will decline. I just wish Wargames Accessories made circular 1/2" Penny Bases.

In other news, I have a new Digital Camera to break in soon...and next weekend should have some new 15mm sci-fi to look at, this time from the 2300AD Universe...but these guys will work for mercs anywhere...btw...anybody have a line on some extra, preferably unpainted Force XXI sci-fi infantry they're not using? I especially need heavy weapons guys (MGs, Plasma Guns, RLs, ATGM and the like). I think I can work a trade or two..Also, does anyone out there know if DLD is still producing...I may make an order with them at the end of the year if I can be assured I'll get what I order within six months.

As for other matters, all is good, other than a small injury to my left hand...sliced my middle finger with a pair of scissors... embarrassing more than anything else.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

07 July 2009

Organizing blues

Not enough magnets and too many containers...yep..I have thrown myself into my organization project with a vengeance...and I may be running out of the Litko base bottoms...I got 200 of each, and it still wasn't enough...Man...do I have a lot of figures. On the container side...I have 40 Container Store shoe boxes for putting figures in...Now I have to INVENT uses for the things...I shoulda only bought one case...but the wife said get two...Duh. In other news, I gotta clean the place again to deal with the bug problem...it's getting endemic in the kitchen. If I can get things done to a point by end of the week and get the apartment cleaned up by next week...then all will be boffo...