December 28, 2017

2017 Year in Review

This is actually one of my favorite posts each year when I get to look back and see what I did and did not accomplish for the year.
2017 started with a "What's in store for 2017" so we will use that post as basis for our year in review.
Bolt Action
Painting Goal: Just before Christmas 2016, I took advantage of a 'deal' that Warlord Games had on a Great Britain army package. $500 plus dollars of models for around $300. Probably close to around 3000 points (if not more). I had always wanted to start a British army, so my goal for 2017 will be to work on this army. My 'plan' is to work on this army over the entire year to keep me busy. No need to really speed paint these guys. I already have two armies painted that I can play with, so I am just going to enjoy myself modeling/painting this army. I still have a few models I can also add to my Soviet and German armies if I get a little bored with the British. By chance I get the British done before the end of 2017, then we will scope out another army to start.

Gaming Goal: Well there are no gamers that are 'real' close to me, but I did find a Facebook group called 'Michiana Bolt Action' and they meet once a month in Michigan City, IN (about 50 miles from me). The first meetup for 2017 will be January 22nd, so I do plan on heading out for a reintroduction to Bolt Action along with Version 2 of the rules. So the plan, try to meet with these guys once a month if possible. Other than that, most of my other game will probably come from events that I plan on attending in 2017. I will be heading out to LVO next month (more details below) and I offered my 'ringer' services to BA Chef on that Saturday of the Bolt Action Tournament if needs it.

Painting Goal:  Well I sort of accomplished what I wanted to do with Bolt Action.  I did manage to get quite a few models completed for my British Army, I think pretty close to 1250 points.  I also managed to get a few vehicles completed for my sons United States Army.  Once March came along, the painting projects slid to other games.
Gaming Goal:  I played a few games with the ‘Michiana Bolt Action’ crew early in the year and played in the Bolt Action AdeptiCon Championships in March.  After AdeptiCon, just like with the painting, my time went elsewhere.  I was able to get in 9 games for the year.

Painting Goal: As of right now, I have no painting goals for WM/H. All my models/paints are back in Arizona. When I go back at the end of May to pick up my wife and youngest child, if there is still room in our van, I may bring back my models with me. I really do enjoy the models from WM/H and enjoy painting them. Gives a nice break from painting WWII. But I am not setting any expectations for me.

Gaming Goal: Well without my models I obviously cannot get many games in. I do plan on getting in a game or two with my oldest son at LVO though.

Painting Goal:  I am actually impressed with myself on this one.  My expectations were very low, but I did manage to get decent amount of models painted for my Hordes Minions Army.  Towards the end of the year, I also painted a few Warjacks and Solo’s for my Warmachine Khador Army.  I am really happy with the results.
Gaming Goal:  When I picked up my family at the end of May, I also grabbed my Warmachine/Hordes armies and brought them back with me.  I did not get in as many games as I had wanted, and every time I was going to play in a local league, something else came up.  I met a friend out in Kalamazoo and played a few games with him and then when my son visited a few weeks ago for SteamCon USA, we also got a game of Warmachine/Hordes in.  For the year, I played 8 games.

I actually think this will be a busy year for me in regards to events and conventions. Last year my plan was to attend Las Vegas Open (LVO) and Privateer Press Lock & Load and I attended both of those. This year I think I have a little bit more planned out.

I will be attending the LVO again next month with my oldest son. I will be flying back to Arizona, and the two of us will then drive to Las Vegas. So in the car I plan on bringing my WM/H armies, along with my sons United States army for Bolt Action (in case BA Chef needs me to 'ringer'). I think my son and I will also split his army into 2 and play some US v US just so he can refresh on the V2 rules.

At the end of March, we have one of the largest conventions in the US called AdeptiCon in Chicago. Before moving to Arizona in 2005 I had always attended this convention (and helped run the Warhammer events). I had been back once in 2010 and my son went a few years ago by himself. Now that it is only 2.5 hours away from me, I will be going back in 2017. I was just going to go and catch up with some old friends, but I saw they still had openings in the Bolt Action US Nationals for Saturday/Sunday. So I decided to sign up for that event, and I think I will be playing my Germans (have not fully decided yet). I have NO expectations on winning any games, for me it is just to throw some dice and meet up with the Chicago Bolt Action crew.

I know there are two events I do plan on attending in the fall. There is the Michigan GT the weekend of October 6th-8th in Lansing, MI (and more than likely they will have a Bolt Action tournament again). In November there is Operation Sting back in Chicago (if I can get quickly registered for this event, it sells out).

This one I was 50/50.  2017 started off really good and I was able to attend both the LVO and AdeptiCon and then when the Fall arrived I missed out on the two above events.  I had car issues in October and missed out on the Michigan GT (though I was registered for the Warmachine/Hordes Tournament) and Operation Sting happened to be the same weekend as Warmachine Weekend in St. Louis, though my car issues kept me from attending that event also.  A new convention that popped up on my radar was SteamCon USA a few weeks back at the beginning of December.  I flew my son out from Arizona and we did attend this convention.

Guild Ball
Painting Goals: Not Applicable
Gaming Goals: Not Applicable

Guild Ball from Steamforged Games really snuck up on me in 2017.  I previously heard about the game but it was not until I attended the LVO in February where I was able to get in a quick demo game and get a better look at the models.  I always prefer games with low model counts (quicker to setup) and each Guild on the Pitch only plays with 6 models, and most Guilds have about 12 models.  As I have previously mentioned numerous times, I am more of a collector than I am a gamer.  So back in February there were about 9 Guilds so roughly around 108 models.  I could easily collect all the Guilds and models and have fun playing the game.  Well guess what, mission accomplished.  I now own every Guild in Guild Ball (including the 2 new Guilds introduced late in the year, Farmer’s and Blacksmith’s), every model (besides some Limited Edition models) and nearly all of them are painted.  I did not play as many games as I had hoped for (14 for the year), but Guild Ball is now my favorite game that I own.  When you read my post “What’s in store for 2018” in a few days, you’ll see Guild Ball high up on the list.

December 27, 2017

Hordes: Minions Totem Hunter (Solo)

I cannot believe it has been 8 1/2 months since I last posted a completed model for Hordes.  I did finish some of my Warmachine Khador not long ago, but not for Hordes.  The year has gotten really busy with Guild Ball.

Well with the release of the ‘Dracodile’ for my Minions last weekend, my interest in my Minions has spiked again.  In a few days we shall see what plans we have for 2018.

With the Holidays being last weekend, I did not get much painting completed, I did manage to get a few things done for my train hobby and prep a model for Hordes, the Minions Totem Hunter.  Seeing how I was still on vacation yesterday, I decided to complete the ‘Totem Hunter’ from start to finish.

He will probably be the last model for 2017 as I start prepping some model to kick off 2018 with....and one of them is Gargantuan.

Totem Hunter

Totem Hunter

Painting Points: 2

December 26, 2017

Hordes: Minions Dracodile Unboxing

Back at the end of November, I was able to get my pre order in for the new Minions Dracodile (deadline was December 1st) from the new spin off company of Privateer Press called Black Anchor Heavy Industries.

The new Dracodile was suppose to ship by December 15th but last week Privateer Press said there was a delay in getting the free t-shirts in time which caused an over all delay in shipping the models.  They decided to go ahead and ship the models without the t-shirts, but there was no guarntee they would arrive in time for Christmas.

Well Friday December 22nd my Dracodile showed up on my doorstep, in time for Christmas.  I was in no real rush to have it built right away, so I decided to have my wife wrap it up and Santa would deliver it to me for Christmas.  

This is the one model I have been waiting for ever since I started collecting/painting my Minions.  I am hoping that the Dracodile will spark my interest in Warmachine/Hordes for 2018.

Well Christmas came yesterday, and here is the unboxing of my Dracodile.

December 4, 2017

Daily Chronicle: SteamCon 2017 Recap

This past weekend was Steamforged Games SteamCon USA held at the Westin Hotel in Lombard, IL.  Since they announced the location of SteamCon USA a few months ago being in the suburbs of Chicago (literally 6 miles from where I grew up, and now only 120 miles) I knew I had to attend this convention and I flew out my oldest son from Arizona to also attend the event.

This was the first year for SteamCon USA so it is it’s infant stages and that showed a little bit while at the Westin.  For quite a few years, the Westin was the home for AdeptiCon (before they outgrew this space) and it is a really nice hotel whith a Grand Ballroom, 2 Junior Ballroom’s and then quite a few other rooms that can be partioned off.  I knew that Steamforged would not be in the Gran Ballroom, but I had at least expected it to be in one of the Junior Ballrooms.  Instead they held their events in multiple smaller rooms.  They had one larger room for the Tournaments and World Championships, one room for the Rookie League and Open Gaming (roughly around 50 gaming mats) and then a room for the Store and their Seminars.  I think if they would have been in the Junior Ballroom with everything all together (besides the Store) it would not have felt as isolated as it did.  Anyways, that is just my opinion and this was their first year.

My plan going into this years SteamCon was mainly to catch up with my son and get some games in with him in the Rookie League.  Seeing how I only had a handful of games under my belt, I was not quite ready to play in any of the Tournaments, plus the Tournaments take most of the day and my youngest son (12) also came with us so he could hang out with his older brother, so I had to make sure he was not too bored and be able to take them out for lunches and dinners.

Thursday November 30th, 2017

This was our travel day.  I had a later start than I wanted to leaving Michigan (my son had a field trip), but we still arrived at the hotel around 6:30 PM local time.  My oldest son was landing at Midway airport at 9:30 PM so we had a little time just to relax in the room and we also checked out the rooms where the events would be taking place.  After we picked up my oldest from the airport, we headed to Rock Bottom Brewery next to the hotel for a very late night dinner and brew.

Friday December 1st, 2017

8:00 AM kicked off the beginning of SteamCon USA and we headed downstairs to get in line to register and pick up pur weekend badges.  Seeing how the attendance this year was only around 180 people, the line was not too long.  Badge pick up was taking place in the store, so once you checked in, you then can continue on to do your shopping.  A few weeks ago Steamforged announced that the second boxes for the Farmer’s Guild and Blacksmith’s Guild were going to be available for purchase with a strict 1 per person, luckily I was with my two sons (and my youngest does not play) so I was able to ‘ninja’ a set for a few people back in Arizona.

After we completed our shopping we took our merchandise back up to our room then gathered our Guilds to bo back down for a game.  It has been quite awhile since my last game of Guild Ball, so we took the first game very slow.  Due to our slowness and getting really close to 1:00 PM (and needing to get lunch), we called the game 8-0 in favor of the Fisherman.

Fisherman’s 8
Alchemist’s 0

When we got back from lunch it was time to get in another game, and this time we decided to play with the game clock, 45:00 minutes each.  Playing on the clock really helped a lot and sped up the game.  With 27 seconds left to go, my Butcher’s were able to prevail over the Hunters.

Butcher’s 12
Hunter’s 0

That wrapped up Guild Ball gaming for the day.

When we got back from dinner (an old Chinese restaurant we used to always eat when living in the area) we attended the SteamCon Mixer.  Also a little disappointed in this.  I knew Steamforged would not be giving us free drinks, but I really thought they would have rolled in a ‘cash bar’.  Instead you had you had to purchase your drinks in the restaurant at the front of the hotel, then bring them all they way back to the rooms.  We did not stay long and instead heading back to the gaming room where the three of us played Shadow Games, a quick card game based on the Free Cities.  My youngest son actually really enjoyed this game quite a bit and it gave him something to do.

Saturday December 2nd, 2017

Got in two more games of Guild Ball in today, lunch, Empire of the State seminar, dinner, and then the SteamCon Keynote, and finally some more Shadow Games.

I played the Mason’s Guild in this game (for the first time) vs Blacksmith’s and just lost.

Mason’s 10
Blacksmith’s 12

In this game, with just 5 seconds to spare, Engineer’s captured the win.  Even if I would have clocked out, you are a given 1 minute to complete an Activation, after that minute you concede a point.  I was up quite a bit so I still had some time to spare.

Engineer’s 13
Hunter’s 0

Sunday December 3rd, 2017

Sunday we decided to make the day a bit shorter.  We played one game of Guild Ball and then cashed out our Rookie League tokens for some Guild Ball mugs and SteamCon limited edition Cards.

Butcher’s 12
Blacksmith’s 0

I really enjoyed the Butcher’s this weekend.  I think I am going to have to concentrate on playing them some more.

So did I have fun? Yea it was a good time.  If I was a little bit more experienced I think I would have signed up for at least one tournament.  Now after 5 games in one weekend, I do feel a lot more confident with the rules.

Will I be going to SteamCon USA 2018? That is To Be Determined.  It really will come down to the location.  If it is someplace again in the Midwest or within 6 hours of driving, I really think so.  If not, then next Fall we may attend the NOVA Open instead.

November 28, 2017

Daily Chronicle: AdeptiCon 2018 Registration

I have been so busy the last two weeks with my other hobby, that I forgot to mention AdeptiCon 2018 Registration went live Friday night November 17th, 2017.

Luckily I used a calendar reminder on my phone and I jumped on registration as soon as it went live.  I am glad I did, one of the events my son wanted to play in sold out that evening.

Originally the plan was for my son and I to play in the “Bolt Action Team Tournament” on Friday, “Warmachine/Hordes Team Tournament” on Saturday, and the “Homelands Cup” for Guild Ball on Sunday.  We’ve been planning the “Bolt Action Team Tournament” since last years AdeptiCon, but neither of us has played much this past year that we decided to choose a different event.

My son has been interested in the “Batman Miniature” game, and that tournament “The Battle for the Cowl 3” was scheduled for Friday and he chose that he wanted to participate in that event.  Luckily that I registered right away, as that event was the one that sold out quickly, 40 spots.

So now I had to choose something to do on Friday.  I like just walking around conventions, catching up with old friends and shopping in the vendor hall, but this is a gaming convention, I need to sign up for an event.  Seeing how I my number one goal for 2018 will be to play more Guild Ball, I decided to sign up for the “Guild Ball AdeptiCon Championship” (currently sold out), not that I plan on doing good in this event, but it will be a good way just to get some more games in.

We are sticking to playing in the “Warmachine/Hordes Team Tournament” on Saturday, and the “Guild Ball Homelands Cup” on Sunday (at the time of this writing, both of these events still have some spots available).

As of now, it looks like AdeptiCon 2018 will be my first con of the year for 2018.  This year (2017), my son and I kicked off the year by going to the Las Vegas Open, I flew down to Phoenix, picked up my son and we drove to Las Vegas.  With the announcement of SteamCon USA (happening this weekend), the funding for Las Vegas Open will not be there since I am flying out my son this Thursday for SteamCon USA, then again for AdeptiCon in March.  Plus for LVO 2018, there are no Guild Ball events listed.  It seems that at that time of the year, Steamforged Games will be endorsing CaptainCon on the East Coast.

Hordes: Minions Dracodile Pre-Order

The deadline to pre-order the new Hordes Minions Dracodile is fast approaching.  The deadline is December 1st, 2017 and if you pre-order by then you will also receive a Black Anchor Heavy Industries t-shirt for free.  Black Anchor Heavy Industries is a new sister company to Prvateer Press where they will concentrate on these limited edition large resin models, (much like how Forgeworld is to Games Workshop). The nice thing is they will also include free shipping with every order.

I just drank some of the swampy waters and placed my pre-order for the ‘Dracodile’, the shipping date is December 15th, so hopefully I should have it by the end of the year.  This one will be in the painting queue for 2018.

November 15, 2017

Guild Ball: Hunter’s Guild ‘Egret’

I have been a little sidetracked lately with another project of mine, but I finally got around to finish up another model for my son’s Hunters Guild.  I have 5 of the 6 models now completed that he gave me to paint, the last one left being the second Captain ‘Skatha’.  Today we have a Striker for his Guild, ‘Egret’.



Painting Points: 1

November 13, 2017

Daily Chronicle: SteamCon Swag Box

Steamforged Games announced over the weekend the contents of the SteamCon Swag Box.  SteamCon UK is taking place this weekend November 17th-19th and SteamCon USA will be December 1st-3rd (Chicago area).

I have not gotten in a game of Guild Ball in quite awhile, but I am looking forward to SteamCon.  My oldest son is flying in from Arizona for the event, and I plan on getting in a lot of friendly games with him trying out all my different guilds.

Anyway’s back to the contents of the Swag Box.

  • 1x Metal Skulk Miniature
  • 1x Old Jake's Coaster
  • 1x Guild Tattoo Sheet
  • 6x Random Guild Cards (Yes, they're the new errata cards)
  • 1x Union in Chains Ball
  • 1x SteamCon Goal Token
  • 1x SteamCon Bottle Opener
  • 2x SteamCon Bang Sticks
  • 1x SteamCon Lanyard & SteamCon Ribbon

Steamforged also surprised us with an announcement that the next two 6-man boxes for the Farmer’s and Blacksmith’s Guild will be sold at SteamCon with a strict 1 per customer.  Good thing I have 2 son’s coming with me.

Farmer's Guild: Old Father's Harvest

Blacksmith Guild: Master Crafted Arsenal