Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Today I bought a Sisters of Battle Squad box -- you know, the one with 10 Adepta Sororitas minis, your basic "troops" unit for a Witch Hunters army. I finally gave up on finding any decent deals on Ebay and/or Bartertown and just decided to do what I should have done in the first place, and that's support my FLGS by purchasing the models through them. That way I'll get exactly what I want, when I want it, and I won't have to waste any of my (increasingly precious and limited) hobby time stripping paint of minis I got in the "aftermarket".

While I'm certain I'm going to drop more cash on this project doing it this way, I find myself asking this question (in a sort of TCO/ROI way of thinking), "Just how much is your free time worth?" By this I mean if
you decide to purchase some stuff off Ebay (and I've done it shamelessly and will continue to do so for other projects) you pretty much KNOW you're going to have to spend extra time prepping the minis that you wouldn't have to spend if you just bought new models. Sometimes the time it takes to do all these extra steps -- paint stripping & model cleaning being the major time bandits followed closely by any repairs you have to make, etc. -- can quickly escalate into a pretty significant time investment.

When you add it all up, the man-hours you had to spend doing the extra work will more than likely offset any savings you got in buying the models "second-hand" (as it were). For me it's a simple overall test: I take what my approximate hourly rate is from work and multiply that times number of hours spent doing the second-hand model pre-painting prep work and that gives you a reasonable dollar amount that you add to the price you paid for the "second-hand" minis. If the total of these two numbers (price y
ou paid for minis + dollar amount associated with spending your precious time doing the extra work) is higher than the retail price of the squad/blister/box/etc., well, you screwed yourself and you'd have probably been better off buying new stuff in the first place. :)

[...and holy crap on a pogo stick I just realized I spent a ridiculous amount of time explaining why I had purchased new minis. Ha! Me, a longtime CMBS victim, explaining to a virtual room full of fellow CMBS victims why I...bought...more...models. Talk about "preaching to the choir", huh?]

Anyway, so I get these shiny new models home and give a little show-n-tell for the wife, showing her the few models I'd managed to score over several months of scouring the Auction Hellmouth for bargains). I also explained to her some basic fluff ideas
I had to the army...

...but I have been vetoed.

The Wife has informed that I shall not, in fact, be naming my new Adepta Sororitas force "Order of the Glistening Black Iris" (think Georgia O'Keeffe painting here, people -- I'll attach a .jpg of the painting to the bottom of this post so you'll know exactly where I'm going with this one...)

Oh, woe is me, I have been repressed and my creativity has been stymied!


Yeah, I'm guessing if
"Order of the Glistening Black Iris" didn't make it through, I'm pretty sure "Order of Our Holy Pink Tacos" won't, either, and that means "Order of Our Raging Premenstrual Princess" is definitely right out.

What disappoints me most about the Black Iris Ban is I think the painting's color palette would look fantastic on a Sisters army. Not that I can't use that color palette, I suppose, but it just won't be the same. Oh well, I'm sure something will come to me.

So, any suggestions you'd care to share?

Has YOUR creativity ever been stymied? Have you ever had good ideas just sort of "die in committee"? If so, how'd you deal with it? Or...how about sharing a tale or two of heartbroken hopes and desolate dreams -- truly good creativity aborted by some outside force or agent?

Lastly, as promised, I present Georgia O'Keeffe's "Black Iris":

Image Credit/Citation:
"Georgia O'Keeffe: Black Iris (69.278.1)". In
Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

(...see what I mean?)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Darkwynn Removes any Doubt that Guard are the New King of Cheese :)

According to BoLS, my friend Nick -- a.k.a. Darkwynn -- has won this year's 'Ard Boys competition. I just wanted to take a moment and congratulate my friend -- winning 'Ard Boyz is pretty damned impressive and having played with him and against him...I'm not really surprised. He's one of those guys that can see things several turns in advance...and he also possesses an almost-supernatural ability to second-guess what his opponet is going to do next.

I guess what I'm really trying to say is this:
Nick won 'Ard Boyz. Nick slaughtered his was to the top with I.G. (noone is really shocked, not even a little bit). Regardless of what army he's playing, he's a smart, strong player -- and finally, congratulations are definitely in order.

So, Nick my brother, congratulations on this pretty damned impressive achievement. When we see each other next we should take 10-15 minutes to go grab some beers and celebrate properly, like real men...n'shit. :)

(And yes, I still think "'Ard Boyz" sounds like...well, like...gay porn.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Holy Incredibly Broken Psychic Power, Batman! (Or, "WTF, GW? HAVE YOU BUMPED YOUR FRAKKIN' HEAD?")

[WARNING: You might say I cluster-bombed the f-word in this post, and committed several other acts of profanity and foulness. As such, this post probably shouldn't be read by...well, anyone, really. Proceed at your own risk.]

So, when I posted my "IT'S A GREAT TIME TO BE IN THE GUARD!" entry, there were
a couple of you that said you look forward to my rants that come on after a new codex is released.

I just finished reading the new SW army list that mkerr put up on BoLS, and read about a new psychic power that Rune Priests may take:

Jaws of the World Wolf (basically a 24" line that removes models
that fail an Initiative test)".

Go on, read that sentence again.

Let those words sink in nice and deep into the ol' brain.

I think you'll agree with me -- SW player or not -- that the first thought that jumped into your head and ran around in circles screaming was "HOLY FUCKING FUCKITY FUCK FUCKING HARE FUCKING KRISNHA JUMPING ON A POGO STICK! What the FUCK WAS GW THINKING? Surely this is bullshit. Surely this is some little gag mkerr is pulling, yanking our collective chains..." (OK...you may not have had that exact thought, but I'll bet the thought you HAD was something similar. If it wasn't...friend, you either love cheesy broken bullshit like a crackhead loves crack served o
n a stripper's nipples or you've got some sort of mental block that's not letting you see just how incredibly, completely, ab-so-fucking-lutely broken a power like this is...)

After recovering from my apoplectic fit (LOL!) and remembering how to breathe again, it dawned on me that mayhap mkerr the elder chose not to share some details about this new power. Perhaps there's some kind of special test, or save...oh YEAH, there's an INITIATIVE TEST. That'll save ya!

Congratulations, Games Workshop. You've outdone yourselves! You couldn't just take the new C:SW by the power-whorehouse for enough "sessions" to make an entire codex rant-worthy (comical or otherwise).

Oh, NO, that's what we expected.

Instead, you made your opening bid a single psychic power so jacked that it was rant-worthy by itself!

It's really a shame, too, because I was thinking maybe, just maybe GW had gotten a better hold on the whole "game balance" thing and while I expected the new SW book to be very competent, close-combat-wise -- and definitely a "step up", power-wise from the old SW 'dex...I certainly wasn't expecting the steaming pile of wolf turds that this power re
presents -- unless there are mitigating rules/circumstances/things we don't know about yet that makes even using this power in some way risky to the Rune Priest and/or there is some kind of "save" other than a woefully-ridiculous initiative test.

Now, one thing: notice I didn't say SW players shouldn't take this power. If it's in your book, take it. However, I may very well begin carrying a 2-foot-long crowbar with me to game so that I'll have my own little "24 inch line" that makes things disappear (or collapse in a heap of bruises and pain, which is just as effective) for those special moments when your 200+ point squad gets eaten by an invisible wolf. :)

Smoke 'em if ya got 'em, folks. Inquisitor Lords with the old-school unlimited range psychic hood are now pretty much mandatory unless you enjoy the feeling of wolf johnson in your backside. Actually, a tooled-up Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor Lord with all those nifty "make the enemy psyker go away" powers/wargear...hmm...

OK guys: what do you think of this game balance abortion?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Planetary Empires Strategy Cards

Lately it seems that GW has been out to impress me.

Just last week we're treated to what I like to call, "The IG FAQ of Win". This week, I see this (OK, granted, it was actually "released" on August 27 but I don't hit the GW web site every day).

What "this" is, is downloadable, free extra content to enhance your Planetary Empires campaign -- a little add-on, if you will. Not necessary to play the game or anything, but a nice little addition you can make to add a little variety/challenge to your campaign.

I'm very happy about these little strategy cards and am hopeful we'll be able to use them in the PE campaign that I joined at Battleforge Games recently...if not, then there's always next campaign, right?

While we're on the subject I'd like to go on record by saying that I approve of any and all free downloadable content that enhances your game. This is nothing new, mind you, video game publishers/producers have been doing it for years (as well as other parts of the software industry) but I can't really think of anything like this in recent memory that GW has actually released for free to download that can actually be a part of the game that isn't an Apocalypse datasheet (please correct me if I'm wrong). I won't say it represents some major paradigm shift on GW's part -- not yet, anyway, they'll have to consistently put little "easter eggs" like this for several months before I think that -- but I will say it's a step in the right direction.

What has GW done lately that's impressed you? What have they done that does not impress you? And while we're talking about PE, has anyone started/joined a new PE campaign since the new set came out?

Monday, September 7, 2009

Fully Functional Parody

Some days when you travel the back alleys of the Internet, you come across interesting and amusing things.

Today was one of those days.

I submit, for your approval (and amusement): Toymallet 40¢, because "In the grim emptiness of your wallet, you can't afford to play".

The fun thing is, isn't not just a parody, it's a fully-realized (though vastly simplified) wargame. If you nose around the site a bit you'll discover that Jennifer Rietz is also a 40K player -- she has pictures of her Tau army posted there. So this is coming from someone who knows what she's talking about.

Good times!

Anyone have any good 40K humor they want to share?

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Sometimes The Funny is Delivered to Me

Every now and then I take a perusal through the great wasteland of the blogosphere, looking for new blogs to follow. I'm often reminded of the line from Bruce Serling's novel, Islands in The Net: "The Net was a lot like television, another former wonder of the age. It was like a vast mirror, reflecting what it was shown -- mostly, human banality."

But there is good stuff out there, you just have to look for it. If you look at my "follow list", you'll see that I follow -- get this -- 180 blogs. Yeah, that's a lot of blogs. When I want to read some new blog content, damn it, I want to read some new content! The vast majority of them are in the FTW Blogger Group, and there's a good reason: Ron really made something special when he created it.

Now as probably know, there's lots and lots of blogs out there about 40K/WHFB/GW. This is a good thing. They run the gamut from pure painting blogs to strategy/tactics to somewhere in-between (my own blog being a mish-mash of "whatever 40K-related I happen to be thinking about or doing at the time").

However, my latest discovery falls into the realm of...let me think... "40k Internet-related Critic" might be a good phrase. This masterpiece blog is Pathtyphon's Blood of Kittens, and it's a riot. With categories such as "40K Douche Bag" (delivering a verbal slap in the face to certain overblown, self-aggrandizing, those-that-suck-on-the-cock-of-powergaming....douche bags!) with posts that read something like the dialog from your average Jerry Springer episode, BoK has found a special place in my heart. The This Week in 40k Douche Bag: YTTH Edition
post made me laugh so much it was almost painful -- and the accompanying graphics were masterful.

Though he doesn't know me, I consider Pathtyphon to be a kindred spirit, a true master of the rant.

If you're not overly squeamish, I say give it a read. :)

What about you guys? Anyone got a blog that you feel the rest of us should be reading? Enlighten me!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Interesting Tidbits from the new IG Codex FAQ

Welly welly well, GW has released a FAQ for the new IG codex -- in what must be a new all-time record from release of codex to release of FAQ.

Giving it a read-through I can't say there are really any big surprises in it, though a couple of the more asinine things did get the old nerf-bat. Specifically, taking two regimental advisers doesn't made the bonus gained from the adviser stack. So no, sorry, you can't have a +2/-2 bonus to reserve rolls.

The biggest surprise, though -- at least for me -- is GW actually included a section on the Inquisition armies (Daemonhunters and Witch Hunters), and it includes both nerfing and buffing in equal measure.

First off, IG may not issue orders to DH/WH: "No, orders can only be issued to non-vehicle units from Codex: Imperial Guard." Oops.

On the positive side, though, you're free to induct any IG unit in the new codex so long as it's allowed by the "By the authority of the immortal Emperor of Mankind..." rule. This does mean no more Armoured Fist Squads (as they no longer exist as a separate unit), but it does mean you can buy all those nifty Guard units and their Chimera transports, too. Also, special characters that replace Platoon Commanders are allowed, and Sentinel Squadrons can be either Armoured or Scout variants.

Oh, and you can only induct 0-1 Leman Russ Battle Tanks, so none of the new variants.

Aaaaaaand last but not least, my favorite part of the FAQ:

Q. Can allied models in terminator armour,
such as Grey Knight Terminators, embark in

A. No. The Valkyrie cannot transport Ogryns or
models of a similar size (such as Terminators),
you stupid, power-cock-sucking douchebag.
Did your mom often drop you on your head when
you were an infant, or were you just born dumb?

There may...or may not be some extra words in that answer that differs from the original text.

All in all though I don't really see anything that's going to represent a dramatic shift in the balance of power in C:IG -- so everyone go ahead and take that breath now. :)

What do you guys find interesting about the new FAQ?