Saturday, January 25, 2020

Las Vegas Open 2020

It is Saturday morning and I am already home from LVO 2020.  We had planned on being at the event all weekend however sometimes life gets in the way.  My transmission started to leak and it turns out my front seal is going out.  This is going to be a costly repair and I had to make a very adult decision.  I decided to cut this years LVO short that way I could save some money for the repair work.  Vegas is not a cheap place to stay anymore and cutting this trip short will almost cover half of my repair bill.  The other reason I didn't mind cutting this trip short is there is not much to do at LVO unless you are playing in a tournament or taking a lot of painting classes.  The vendor hall is small and not many game demos taking place.  This is really an even centered around tournaments and afterwards going out on the town.  So I was able to drop in see my friends do some shopping and feel like I saw everything I wanted to see.  I hope when they move to the new location we will see an improvement with this. 

Thursday night I was able to get in for the big GW reveal and it was okay.  I enjoy being part of the audience and listening to how witty the presenters are.  People ask the same old lame ass questions and they have come up with some fun ways to respond.  As far as all the new models coming out and things going on I am not excited.  They did a hype video for Ghazghkull Thraka but it will require me to buy a new book for his rules.  I will pick up the model but will wait till a new army book comes out so I don't have to purchase multiple books.  They did mention that they are working on all the FW books and balancing those rules.  What I think that means is they are going to be dropping more of the FW model line and creating another book for people to purchase instead of adding the FW rules to the regular army book.  Lets face it GW is great at selling books and people like buying them. 

I signed up for the High Rollers package which includes a swag bag and you get early registration for next years LVO.  Inside the bag you get typical swag like T-shirts, glasses, models, paint and markers.  Not a bad little bag for the price.  Some stuff I will use other items will be given away to friends. 

I purchases a few hobby items.  I have been using Pro Acrylic paint for some time and really like the results I have been getting.  I picked up their new transparent paint in the new bottles.  The new paint bottles are give the customers 33% more paint and they only increased the cost by a quarter.  One of the selling points for these paints is they can be thinned down to a wash that will not leave that staining effect.  I will give them a shot and see what happens. 

I also picked up a leaf punch made by Green Stuff World.  I have been wanting to try one just never could justify the shipping.  Now I have one and will give it a try.

I spent some money at the GW store and picked up all the AI weapon packs.  I have been wanting to add these to my collection not sure if I will actually use them.  The challenge with GW and FW is you never know when they will stop making product and you will have to pay even more to buy it second hand.  I did notice that they were selling all the Sisters of Battle stuff early and it was not moving very fast.  That tells me that their army book must not be broken like all the new Space Marine stuff...... anyways 

I was not expecting to find anything for Gaslands at LVO and I was so totally wrong.  I found all kinds of cool stuff and purchased all of it.  So let me break down these purchases. 

Front Line Gaming is known for their second hand store and it has been successful for their business.  They always set up a shop at LVO and people buy it all up.  I found a Blood Bowl bag with some Goblins and Halflings for $20.  I really didn't need them but a few of the poses I don't have for my teams so I figured why not.

The first booth I saw had this amazing starter bundle for $60 which included this cool box.  If you know me you know I have a thing for boxes.  Inside the box was everything you need to play the game and some cool dash boards that I will be using.  If you purchased the bundle you also got 4 free cars, well I'm a sucker for new cars. 

Then Dads Armies was selling 3D printed parts so I picked some of those up.  They were different prices depending on what was in the bag.  All good stuff that I will be able to use and he will be at Adepticon with even more stuff so check his booth out. 

There was a shirt vendor that has a great Gaslands shirt so I of course I picked one up.  Just a fun shirt that I can wear on demo days and at events.  He mentioned he had a few more designs that will be ready for Adepticon so I better bring more money. 

For an overnight trip to LVO I feel very satisfied with my decision to cut the trip short.  I had a great time and got to visit with my friends.  I will be going again next year and this will be my annual gaming event.  The one negative thing about the event is the fact that they have activities taking place at different parts of the hotel and if you don't know about them you will miss them.  I hope with moving to a new location this can be resolved and the vendor hall can grow.  I feel with a larger convention area they can create more activities for people to do that are not playing in tournaments. 

Happy Gaming 

Sunday, January 19, 2020

40K O.G.

Saturday was our 5th 40K OG at Imperial Outpost Games.  This is a fun event and we had 30 players show up to play.  We actually had to turn people away because we didn't have enough table space.  I took my Adeptus Custodes and they did okay.  My first game was a lose against Tau and I was tabled by the end of turn 4.  I don't play enough and really didn't know what to expect from Tau and now I do.  I should have taken advantage of deep striking and got into close combat with this army.  My second game was against Adeptus Custodes and it was a fun game.  We both had different army configurations so it was a fun game.  I ended up winning the game objective however he won with more tournament points.  My last game was against IG and my dice went stupid on me.  I lost my two hard hitting units because I failed all my save rolls.  This caused me to loose the game but I still had fun playing the game.

The event organizer had challenge coins made for the event and they look cool.  

Another cool featured added to the event were the table numbers.  A local company, Mechanical Warhorse, made these table numbers and we were the test subjects to see how they work.  They were real helpful and make the tables look better so players could find their tables. 

I know of only one negative event that took place during the event because it happened right behind me.  One player was set up behind a building during the shooting phase.  The other player could see part of one weapon and shot at them.  The shooting unit had only one model that could see the part of the weapon and the unit was shooting out of terrain through two windows and he got to take all his shots.  This caused a disagreement and the judge was called over.  It was ruled this is how the rules are written and he can shot at the unit.  The one player ended up conceding the game because he did not like the rule. 

This is one of those rules I don't like with the current rules and I would have never taken that shot.  This is just one of the few examples of how the rules have changed the game to a shooting game and is focused on tournament players.  This LOS rule is just as silly as how tanks can shot all it weapons regardless of the facing of the weapon.  Take these rules with all the crazy special rules that allow units to hit on 1's but because all ones fail the player gets to reroll ones, that was my game against Tau.  This is why I really don't play 40K anymore at the shop because there are all these crazy rules for shooting and it just is not fun to play.  I  will continue to support the 40K OG in the future but I can't take it seriously as a game. 

Friday, January 17, 2020

Dice Tray

The other day my wife and I were at a Home Store looking for something for the house, I kinda wandered around and she shopped for stuff.  I came across this Nut Cracker Bowl Set and thought it would make a great dice tray.  At first it was just a thought that slipped away because I really didn't need it.  I placed it back on the display and continued to wander around and found myself back at the display for reasons unknown to me, I think my wife wanted me to look at something.  I picked up the set again and looked at the price, $10.  I felt the price was not bad and I decided to purchase it.  The reason I felt this would make a nice dice tray is it could be used by two players with a pool of dice kept in the middle.  As a bonus I get the nut cracker that I can use to open some of my paint bottles when they get sealed shut.

Below are some photos of my newly repurposed dice tray for $10 minus the nut cracker that has been repurposed as a paint bottle opener.  So the center section will be used to hold dice and the two other sections are the dice trays.  This will allow two players to use it for games that have a shared dice pool.  It can also be used for one player and just allows for the dice to be sorted out.  I used it for a recent game of Gaslands and it worked out great.  It is not big enough for rolling lots of dice but for small games it is perfect. 

I guess going to the Home Store with my wife paid off. 


Sunday, January 12, 2020

Gaslands: Implements of Carnage

My local friendly game store, Imperial Outpost Games, recently stocked the Implements of Carnage and movement templates from North Star Military Figures. The implements of Carnage is a great pack of weapons and upgrades scaled for Hot Wheel cars. The pack cost $16.99 and has so much great stuff to upgrade your vehicles.  This post is going to show what you get in the pack in case you were interested in purchasing one for yourself.

The Implements of Carnage comes with two identical frames so all the photos below will be duplicated.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Gaslands: Blitz

I have been going crazy buying up Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars for Gaslands.  I am just overwhelmed with inspiration for the cars I want to build.  Currently I am working on my first team that will be named Blitzkrieg.  This team will be made up of all the Volkswagen cars I can find and I have found a lot of them.  Blitz is the first car for my team and I wanted to share some photos of how I went about making this car. 

It all started when Tim demoed Gaslands for me and I picked up the rule book.  As I as flipping through the book I saw the art for the Slime faction.  I knew that I wanted to create a car based on the art work. 

I already had a Coke VW car that I picked up at Hobby Lobby.  I took it apart and just started digging through my bitz boxes.  I cam across some Orruk weapons that already had a curve that fit the VW bodies curves.  With a bit of sanding I was able attach my Mohawk on my car. 

I needed to take the car a bit further and give it more of a Mad Max feel.  I knew the bumpers and wheels needed to go.  I also wanted to add some weapons so the headlights went away and replaced with with guns.  I also added an engine in the backseat and put the exhaust coming out the back window.  I also found a set out double wheels for the rear to just pull the vehicle together. 

My Blitzkrieg team will all be painted Gray with German WW2 decals because I have a bunch of these decals for other projects.  The final result for this project made me happy, it really turned out great and didn't really take that much time.  I already have my second VW Bug on my bench and will be posting up photos of it when it is finished. 

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Gaslands: Post-Apocalyptic Vehicular Mayhem

Welcome to Jackal Garage

I have been a fan of Car Wars since I was a child just starting out in the hobby.  When Car Wars was first released I played that game with my friends for many summers.  It was a great game and I have a lot of childhood memories playing it.  We did the usual things chopping up our model cars and making our own crazy inventions.  Like most children I moved on in life and my childhood games were pitched in the trash, Car Wars was no exception.  

As the years went on and technology improved I was able to get PDF copies of all the Car Wars material and found some of the original books.  Steve Jackson Games even released the original copy a few years back and I added that to my collection.  As I am writing this blog post the sixth edition of Car Wars is live on Kickstarter and is coming to a close.   It had been made into a tabletop miniatures game with model cars and road maps.  I backed the game along with many others because it is closing at over $600 K.  Car Wars has been a game I have collected however never really played it again.  The game is dated and is more nostalgic for me than a game I want to play.    

A few years back I heard about this game called Gaslands by Mike Hutchinson thanks to Social Media.  I started following his project and took an interest in its development.  It was exciting to hear that Osprey Games was going to publish the rules and eventually it was released as one of their Blue covers.  I did not pick up the game when it was released because I had moved on to other games and lost interest.  This happens a lot more to me these days with new games coming out on the market.  There is no real excitement due to the amount of information available through Social Media.  I saw the book sitting on the rack along with the other books from Osprey but just never picked it up.   The days of discovering new games at the shop are kinda gone due to so many companies promoting new products on Social Media and YouTube channels getting advance copies to review. 

Fast forward to 2019 the rules sold out a few times and Osprey had the author write a second edition of the game called Gaslands Refuelled.  This was the version of author wanted to release and has additional features making it a fully flushed out game system.  I still didn't pick up a copy of the rules because I was stuck in the GW buying vacuum with all their releases.  Towards the end of 2019 I was burnt out with the GW marketing machine and was looking for something new to play.  My buddy Tim ran me through a demo of Gaslands and I was hooked.  The game took me back to my childhood sitting around the kitchen table playing Car Wars.  The game has all the modern day game mechanics that we have come accustomed to with simple rules and resource management.  The cost to get started is low; Rule Book, Movement Templates, Skid Dice and some Hot Wheel cars.  It is a great game that allows for some very cinematic moments that  will be talked about for days after wards.  

The real turn on for me is being able to create very cool looking vehicles and not spending a lot of money making it happen.  One of the things I don't like about a lot of miniature games today are the models don't allow for conversions.  The rule of cool is gone and now we talk about base sizes and modeling for advantage.  One of the reasons I picked up Orks for 40K was I wanted to create cool models with kit bashing and conversions.  A Stompa only existed in EPIC and in the fluff, there was never a model kit for one.  The rules for looted vehicles were taken out of match play and can only be used in narrative games.  GW makes model kits for every unit available and the creative side has gone away.  Yes I can still convert models however the cost of new models has risen so much that it is not worth chopping up new kits.  The new infantry models make it real challenging to just do an arm swap.  This is why Gaslands has gotten me excited about the hobby again.  I can purchase new Hot Wheels car for .99 and don't mind chopping one up just for an engine or the wheels.  I can be that special snow flake with my own unique team and other players can see the amazing craftsmanship in my work.  This excitement for the game has ignited my creative side so much that I cancelled my pledge for the Car Wars Kickstarter.  I don't want my cars made for me, I want to make my own cars and decide what weapons they are equipped with. 

This game does have a dark side that can suck you in rather quickly.  Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars are cheap causing your collection to grow rather fast.  I have over 100 cars in my collection so far and seem to be buying more.  Today die cast cars are made for pop culture and many of them can be used right out of the packaging with weapons already attached.  I purchase 4 cars today just to use the wheels for other projects.  The amount I have spent on cars so far cars will give me a fleet of vehicles and hours of hobby time.  Since this game does not have a model line a 3D printing market has grown with all kinds of wheel, weapons and figure options.  North Star Games has even made a plastic parts pack with cool bits to customize your cars.  Other companies are leaser cutting cool movement templates and skid dice for players making it even easier for new players to get started.  The players are creating cool dashboards and equipment upgrade cards giving the game a more polished look.  People are making great videos sharing different ways to build and paint cars and the FB group is very supportive and positive.  No one is getting hung up on scale or WYSISYG crap and it is just a great community to be part of. 

I will be sharing more about Gaslands in future posts but for now I have cars to build and mayhem to cause.  

Monday, December 30, 2019

2019 Review

When 2019 started out my life was moving in one direction however it changed directions by the end of it.  I started out the year hosting a local live stream for my local game store and playing a lot of games with friends.  After I returned from LVO the co-host of the show decided to move by home to be with his children bringing the live stream to an end.  I decided to try my hand at building a YouTube channel and it was moving along nicely.  Well that fell apart due to YouTube getting in some trouble with the Federal Trade Commission.  I wrote about that in a previous post  and most of the concerns have been resolved however I decided not to return to making videos.  I do enjoy making videos but it takes a lot of time that I could spend on my hobby. 

Another big life change happened when my wife took a new position at work.  Her new position gives her weekends off which means I don't get to game on Saturdays.  Now I have Fridays to hang out at the shop to play games however it is hard to find people to play.  I might have to start playing after work or at different shops if I want to get any games in.  This change has me spending more time at my hobby desk painting.

I started tracking the models I painted in 2019.  This was eyeopening for me and I painted 120 models throughout the year.  For me this is a lot of models and I will be doing this again in 2020 and recommend others to do the same.  It is very helpful to see your progress throughout the year.  

I am very happy to say I read 3 books in 2019.  I know this is not a lot of books compare to so many others but I it a big deal for me.  Not counting rule books I have only read a few books since college.  I don't know if it is just me getting older or my lack of interest in T.V. but I am enjoying reading more.

My 2019 goals were to finish painting my 40K and AOS armies.  These goals didn't happen because I have stopped playing both these games.  These games now have a lot of special rules and abilities that have sucked the fun out of the game.  I will not get rid of my armies and have started to use my AOS army for another game called Warlord of Erehwon.  I have played a few games with my buddy Neil and we both really like how it plays.  It is a fun game based on the Bolt Action rules and allows me to play with my collection of models. 

Blood Bowl is still a game I enjoy to play and will continue to play.  I did paint up a new team for the annual Grumble Bowl and will paint another in 2020.

I had the goal to finish my WW1 and WW2 Con Games in 2019 however this did not happen.  I just didn't have the extra funds to purchase the custom dash boards for the games.  Lets see if I can get this done in 2020.  I did start work on a new Con Game that is almost finished.  I picked up a small collection of the World War Toon models from Meng and will be using them to play TANKS.  I still have a few more tanks to finish and will have this on the table soon.

My other goals to play Bolt Action, K47 and Lord of the Rings all failed.  I did purchase a lot of stuff for Lord of Rings just never played it.  I know people are playing these games in the area but with the changes to when I can play at the shop it is hard to find people to play. 

Three games that came out in 2019 that I was not expecting to come out that I was not expecting.  

Aeronautica Imperials:  This was an release from GW and I have always liked this game.  I still have all the original books and models.  When it came out all other projects were put on hold and I painted up my Ork fleet.  My buddy Dusty and I have been playing when we can and it is just a lot of fun.

Star Wars Legion:  I was not interested in this game when it was first released.  I didn't like the models and the factions that were released.  Fantasy Flight Games released a new starter box this year with the Clone Troopers and Droids.  I picked this up and went right to work on painting up the Clones.  I still have not played the game however I am sure that will change in 2020.

Gaslands:  The second edition of these rules were released in 2019.  My buddy Tim recently ran me through a game and I am hooked.  I have purchased a bunch of cars and have been building my teams.  I have a lot to say about this game however those thoughts will wait for separate posts in the future.

My Goals for 2020 are to finish all the projects I have set aside over the years.  Some of these projects will be for games that I don't play anymore however I want to get these projects finished. 

Custodes:  Still have a unit of models that were based coated that I will add to my army. This is a small amount of models and should get done rather quickly. 

Ork Kill Team:  I started converting an Orc Kill Team but never finished it.  I have been playing a lot of Kill Team with my buddy Neil and we have committed to playing all the Arena missions. 

Stompa:  I started painting an Orc Stompa and it still needs a lot of work.   I just want to get this finished even thou I don't play my Orcs. 

Boar Riders:  I have 6 of the new models that I want to add to my Warlord of Erehwon army.

Team Yankee:  I have built and base coated a lot of tanks for my Russian army.  I need to pick up the new rules and finish this project. This is going to be a big project but they paint up fast. 

Flame of War:  I have always had an interest in this game but never really played it.  I have collected a few armies and even painted up an early war French force.  The new 4th Edition rules have more people playing the game and I pulled out all my Americans I have collected.  I started getting all my Sherman tanks based coated and sorting out my collection.  Another big project that should paint up fast. 

Gaslands:  This is going to be a major focus for me in 2020.  Even if I can't find anyone to play I am just having way to much fun building cars.  We have a small group in the area and I hope we can grow the community.  It is a fun game and really allows me to be creative building cars and terrain. 

2020 will kick off with me attending two major conventions, Las Vegas Open and Adepticon.  This was a big financial commitment my wife and I made so I could attend these events and I am looking forward to them.