Tuesday, December 25, 2007

2007 in Review.

2007: A Year in Review.

  • Dec. 25th, 2007 at 10:47 AM

2007: A Year in Review.

Being half-gypsy:
At the beginning of 2007 I had recently arrived from a very short stint in Seattle. It was fun, but brief. Maybe it was the gods telling me to get back to Wisconsin, but things worked out at the end of 2006 to get me back to lovely Mount Horeb Wisconsin.

For the first half of the year I got to play Illustrator. Lots of work got done, but little hit the presses. Such is the nature of doing freelance illustration for small-press publishers. Made little fundage, but did get some interest from much larger publishers...just in time for the CAR-MA (heheh, play on words...karma...CAR-MA...get it?) to kick in!

So Katie was still working for Cuna Mutual Group: a monstrosity of an Insurance Company. An evil empire if there ever was one.

In maybe late April, early May, things took a turn for the worse. Car failures. bits started breaking. In May I decided to get back in to the tech field and drop the pretense of being an illustrator as we needed the money. I got a contracting gig...at CUNA Mutual Group no less.

After some serious hardships, some $2400 in repairs out of pocket and getting behind in everything...things started to balance out.

I ended my contract at CMG and got another gig at a smaller, but much cooler place.

Where CMG was a matter of a great wage but dealing with a lot of Corporate BS and politics...as well as shamming my ass off and doing as little as possible during the day and working for an outfit that was ethically shady and more interested in staying with the company to gain tenure and get to retirement while doing as little as possible...

...The NEW job is a smaller outfit, geared towards working hard, and getting the job done as fast and accurately as possible. All about efficiency, and quality. VERY little politics and corporate BS. The leadership are all pros, and the people I report to have all done my job, and can do it better than I can (I can't explain what a relief this is. Nothing sucks as much as working for people who have no idea what you do: administrators who can't relate to you or your job and simply push mandates from on-high.).

So the new job is good. I'm a rock-star and fit in well as I like to work and get in, get the job done, and have pride in my work so that when it is done, and I put my name on it, it is guaranteed to be A-J Squared the fuck AWAY! In addition, to work in a place that expects that and rewards it.

So the Nissan is in the garage in the basement with a hole in the fuel line (and a dozen other issues), un-driveable until I fix it. I'm keeping it as a back-up...just in case.
The Volvo is out #1, "Good" car, and is in the driveway. It's getting really crappy fuel economy, but it's a solid runner with good tires, so I'm not going to bitch.

We have a $500 Honda which I drive as a daily runner. Looks like crap, but really...as long as it runs I'm satisfied.

Well...I've played in a couple campaigns, and ran a couple as well. I'm (for those who know me) a PT GM. Only a relief GM. Not a FT guy. I usually do pretty well on a short run, but run out of steam in the stretch. The Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay campaign I was running I think is officially dead. I know people still want to play, but I'm burned out. Lots of stuff I'd love to PLAY...but my GMing batteries are worn out. This year we also got to play a bit of Savage Worlds in a variety of settings. MAN! I LOVE that system! Shadowrun 4th Ed has been a blast too.

We have been able to play a bit of Warhammer 40,000 and Warhammer Fantasy Battle this last year. Our primary hobby is collecting, assembling, converting, painting and occasionally playing Warhammer.

Apocalypse has been a blast.

So many games...so little time.

Life and Myself:
I've learned a bit about myself this year. I've gained more patience in some areas...and less in others.

I've found that there are some people who are friends...real friends. The kind of friend who you can respect, and respects you back. The kind that are willing to actually listen.

Then there are those who are simply "friends of the moment"...friends who are there for a common cause but really aren't there for you at all.

I learned that cliques don't necessarily end in high school. I learned that I'm not necessarily one of the cool kids...and I learned that I'm okay with that.

I guess it's a matter of having patience with those that matter and less with those that don't.

I haven't had the time to spend with people like I would have liked. Partly because of wasted time with folks who really I shouldn't have. Partly due to unforeseen circumstances with vehicles. This coming year I intend to rectify that.

It's all about priorities...and keeping them straight. Dealing with the important stuff and letting the stuff that doesn't matter...really slide.

Goals for Next Year:
Again we're planning on going to conventions. We love them and the opportunities they present for getting to hang out with people we care about. GamesDay Chicago and GenCon Indy are the two most likely candidates, though there may be others to add to the list.

I've put on a bit of weight since dropping out of the SCA. My physical activity has tapered off, and it's starting to show. I need to work on that. I don't have any need to be a hard-body or anything...I don't need to impress anyone, I'd just like to be healthier (well...not like I'm ever sick or anything...but need to build up my wind again. It's hard to believe I used to be able to run a marathon and hike 30+ miles a day. Sad really.

Hopefully the vehicles will stay solid for a bit and we can save up to replace them as needed. We're indifferent about cars that look fancy or using them as status symbols...really, they are only a means to get to work, and what they look like means something between jack and shit to us. Same goes for pretty much everything material. We just don't care. We work, and we have our hobbies and our friends. Pretty straight-forward, simple life really.

I'd like to strengthen our ties to our friends, people local and distant. I'd like to reconnect with some local friends, maybe do some gaming, maybe just hang out.

Work seems solid and I'm digging it. Maybe get some certifications. Not really interested in advancement. I like being hands on, and don't really like my Manager's job (meetings, process documentation, etc).

Well...that's about it.
2007 in a nutshell.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Descent of Angels: Summary and Review

Well...I finished Descent of Angels and as promised here is the Summary and Review:

Descent of Angels

(Horus Heresy)

By Mitchel Scanlon This Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Publication Date: October 30, 2007

The Summary:

The story obviously is about the Dark Angels...the First Legion of Astartes during the Great Crusade. The story is told from the perspective of Zahariel, an "Aspirant" to a knightly order on the planet Caliban. The story progresses through his youth, training, questing and knighthood...all set under the eye of the Primarch Lion'El Jonson. The tale details the beginnings of the Order and how cool the Primarch was, surpassing even the greatest living Legends of the Age, Luther, Ramiel and others and how impressive even the mere mortals were...much less the nigh-godlike Lion.

Early on you can see where tension would arise between The Lion and his Knights. One of the main characters is Luther. Easily the greatest hero of all time. A knight who had surpassed all who had come before in honor, fighting ability, sheer charisma. "A Perfect Knight" by any measure. Luther is the one who found the child Lion'El Jonson. The story details how The Lion was found, how he somehow survived alone on a deadly planet full of "Great Beasts" which were usually the object of numerous "Quests". Of course...with the arrival of The Lion, everything changed.

Being a Primarch, The Lion surpassed everyone rapidly and soon became a knight, created "The Order" and through this "Order" changed the shape of Caliban's politics and civilization forever. Being a world of Knightly Orders...the Lion's "Order" ...called "The Order" BTW, soon consumed or destroyed all competition and set about a quest to rid the planet Caliban of all Great Beasts. This of course was revolutionary.

In the end The Lion's quest was successful, the main characters, teenagers become knights and the last vestiges of the old regime were wiped away.

Soon after the completion of his Great Quest (and about 2/3 of the book) was the "Descent of Angels". The 1st Legion, Angels in Black, Astartes...coming to herald the coming of The Emperor of Mankind. The story fast forwards to the point where Zahariel, his best friend and cousin as well as several others are prepared for their transformation to astartes.

As the reader may understand, only the young can become astartes, so many members of The Order are given surgical improvements, but cannot become astartes. This leaves out many, including the Great Hero Luther.

Fast forward again to the arrival of the Emperor. There is a plot hatching within The Order. Some members don't like what The Emperor and his Imperium mean...a loss of their identity, of their traditions, their religion...etc. Zahariel is brought in by his cousin to join this secretive cabal of rebels, but he won't be a party to it.

Zahariel foils the plot, and and the story fast forwards again to the Legion taking over the conversion towards compliance of a planet currently held by the White Scars. A brief interlude and the Dark Angels as they are now called relieve the White Scars so they can move to another area to continue the Great Crusade.

Of course, there is a plot and soon a nice, simple, peaceful transition becomes open warfare. The war goes quickly, and through the use of some psyker power and some of the newer astartes and older knights (non-astartes) the planet is certified "compliant". The Lion, seemingly uncomfortable with some of the members of the expedition and the way the campaign was concluded...sends some prominent members back to Caliban to gather more recruits and train them...including Luther, who at this point is starting to chafe in the shadow of The Lion as well as several older "Knights" as well as younger ones like Zahariel.

The Review:

That's it. They introduce a new character and we see him grow to be a superhero...and then he becomes an Astartes. A latent psyker to boot.

The Lion isn't much more than a background superhero who instigates a conflict with the other orders in order to get what he wants, as well as easily alienates his best and brightest.

Although you can see how dissent could easily form, there is little of it. A few veiled glimpses from minor characters, and a few understandable questionings from characters such as Luther are it. The one threat came from the secret cabal and that was put down immediately.

I guess you can see how some turned away from The Lion, but the book doesn't really get in to it. No split in the ranks, no "Fallen" and "Unforgiven". None of that. Just the merest glimpse of how the dissent began...barely.

Honestly, I wanted to see less of Zahariel as a teenage wonderboy and more training as an Astartes. More Dark Angels as a Legion and more meat as far as why the split happened.

In reading Descent of Angels, I kept wondering...when are we getting to him becoming an Astartes, and then wondering when the mutiny would happen. It never did.

Maybe the book was too subtle. Maybe I've been led down the primrose path by too many Black Library books that lay it out all nice and neat in four-color style. I kept thinking there just HAS to be a sequel in order to finish the story.

It wasn't a bad book. I did enjoy it. I was let down though. I expected more. Maybe that is on me.


Of all the Horus Heresy series, I'm grading this one the Lowest thus far. That being said, on a scale of One to Five Stars, One meaning it Truly Sucked and Five being an All-Time Classic....I'm giving Descent of Angels Three Stars. (***)

ooooOOOOOOooohhhh...gotta have it!

...the only thing I want for Christmas (well...in January at least.)



Deluxe and very limited!

This lavishly produced deluxe collectors edition Dark Heresy Rulebook is limited to 200 copies worldwide.

With a gold embossed black leather cover, matt-finished paper with gilt edging, three marker ribbons and two A2 sized poster maps of the Calixis Sector, this highly desirable tome is only available direct from Black Industries and while stock lasts!

Each book comes with an official numbered certificate, signed by one of the two hundred Inquisitors of the Ordos Calixis - making each one totally unique.

Available to advance order soon.

PLEASE NOTE: Mock-up images, not final product.

Deluxe Hardback : UK £65.00 : January 2008 : 400pp : ISBN 978-1-84416-496-7

I'll gladly pay the UK £65.00 if someone could secure me a copy. (I don't have a "real" cc so I can't buy stuff from BL directly.)

Seriously folks...if ANYONE can secure a copy I'll gladly pay for it, even in advance.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Horus Heresy...

Descent of Angels arrived today.
I can't help but let out a bit of a schoolgirl *SQUEEE*

Sunday, November 11, 2007

What a day...

Met some cool folks for lunch. Embarrassed the hell out of myself by power-talking for 2 hours (see...this is what happens when we don't get normal human interaction on a regular basis: I talk at 90mph until people get weirded out by me. Go Team Preston!). It's not likely that these folks will ever call back. I imagine they are weirded out by us/ me.

So on the way home, picked up a set of White Lions of Chrace that was on clearance and headed home.

OH...and I hit my first deer on the way home. Car coming on the other side, so I got technically sideswiped by a deer. Saw him coming, but couldn't jerk the wheel or anything...focused on keeping the car even and going forward...and not putting us in the ditch or causing a head-on collision. The Volvo has a dented up door now. Great!

I'm gonna go paint some Inquisitorial Henchmen now.

Been busy as hell lately...

So work is interesting. Interesting in a good way, not in a fortune cookie "May you live in interesting times" kind of way.

I took a massive pay cut, leaving the last place and coming here. The last place I told them I wasn't extending my contract and they cut me on the spot. It was an un-ethical place, with folks interested in only doing as little as possible. Really crappy place to work and I wasn't going to be a party to it. Besides...it was so unbelievably political.

Now THIS place...night and day different.
Work. Getting the job done right as fast as humanly possible. The folks I work with are pretty squared away. Small crew. Smart technical mother-fuckers. For the first time in years I'm busting my ass to keep up and get it all crammed in my head-meats. I'm putting forth more effort than I have in a long time. They are most certainly getting their money's worth out of me. Actually, it's kind of a gyp, but thus far it's all good.

NO time for websurfing, forums, chat. No time for any goofing off at all.

When I get home, I'm smoked. Haven't been playing any 40k or WFB. Haven't played anything in weeks.

I'm getting some Space Marine Veterans (MKI and MKII) as well as Masters of the Chapter assembled. Leman Russ Tanks are being assembled and painted by assembly line. IG Steel Legion as well as an Inquisitorial Retinue etc. Big Apocalypse game on the 17th at 6pm till the wee hours of the morning.

Went to a buddy's house for some D&D action. I actually didn't play, which sucked. Observing isn't as cool as playing by any stretch. It's a very gamist, tactical type game, light in the RP. Haven't actually been invited to play, and I might not. We'll see. I liked the folks, they seemed all pretty cool.

Today we're meeting with some folks we met via MySpace. Not exactly my favorite method of meeting folks, but these folks seem pretty solid. Maybe get a game started. We'll see. Right now I'm looking forward to some deep-fried pickles and hefeweisen.

Sunday, October 28, 2007


Well...after a tough week, the wedding went off well. Levi and Sarah are married. It was a really long day. I got adopted by one of the groomsman's parents. Really awesome cool folks BTW.

Got pretty toasted at the rehearsal dinner. Folks forget that I really don't have a "filter" per se. I am pretty much who I am. I tend to avoid sugarcoating things and tend towards brutal honesty over political correctness (doesn't mean I'm a dick or anything, just that I say what's on my mind, regardless of popularity). I helped get everyone seated after an hour wait, and freebie appetizers and free beer. Everyone assumed I went and chewed someone out. Quite the contrary...I was very nice and asked if it would be possible to be compensated for the hour of lateness with some appetizers.
[* on a separate aside, you can tell a LOT about people from how they treat service personnel. I never see the need to be mean to people. Be nice to people and you'll usually get what you want...especially when you're a 6'6" beast like me ;). Seriously though, Be assertive, or be nice, but reading a waiter the riot act really never accomplishes anything but make YOU look like an asshole.]

Katie's sick with the funk. Cold/Flu stuff.

I need to sit down tonight and work on some art for a buddy of mine. I haven't had a moment's peace to do it until now. Katie's working on Tank Assembly...and I'm working on some Sci-Fi pulpy goodness.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Game stuff...

Not a lot of time for game stuff lately. At least since last week.

Played a big game of 40k Apocalypse. 12k per side. About 4200 points per person, x3 per side. Good game. Mech Tau are still devastating as are largely Mech Eldar...Eldar Titans are gods on the battlefield. We got annihilated as if weren't even there. Need to come up with a better plan.

Been assembling a Armored Tank Company for the last week. Mostly done. They'll be cool once we're done with it.

Any hobby expenditures are on hold until the vehicle situation is resolved.

High Elves are coming really soon, and hopefully the car will be out of the shop by then!


So I'm back at it again. Smaller outfit. MUCH less pay. But folks seem much more focused on simply getting the job done. None of the big-time corporate bullshit. I think my lack of political skills won't hurt me as bad here.

Essentially doing coordination for network technicians and the sites they work at. Some troubleshooting; lightweight stuff. Mostly so far making sure the folks driving out to the site have exactly what they need before they go out.

Everyone seems pretty squared away, and for the most part friendly. Definitely feels like a small office, kind of a "team" environment which is night and day different from some places I've worked. I hope it's a good solid fit for both the company and myself. Compensation be damned. I figure piece of mind and not hating your job is worth money.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I just got canned...

It's okay. I had sent an email to my supervisor regarding some issues I had with certain policies at work. Some things they were deciding were really bad. Okay, so it's an account management team, and the supervisor isn't involved AT ALL, and the five other people in the team have NO IT BACKGROUND AT-ALL...they've simply been with the company for 15-30 years (not making this up) to decide for themselves what policy is.

For example they decided that when accounts go inactive after 90 days, and people call in to log in, and they are locked out...to simply have them re-register as new users instead of simply turning the account back on after calling them back to verify employment.

This requires them to re-register, create new user ids and then it comes through the system and whoever does "new user callbacks" (ME) calls and verifies employment.

Both ways require the same steps in employment verification. One requires the team to do it at the time, and the user is able to get on the system in as soon as a couple minutes. The other requires a whole lot more hassle, and pawning off the work on someone else (ME). Not to mention the creation of a LOT of extra accounts and a LOT of extra hassle as the user then has to wait at the least one business day, usually more to get online.

Policies are made by the old-timers awaiting Union Pensions who are simply lazy instead of by people who have a concern for customer service.

There's a dozen other things like this, but I won't go in to it. It's all similar.

The standard answer in this team is "no, we can't do that" even when they can, they just don't want to.

So I emailed my supe. I'm not in these meetings anyhow. I man the phones by myself for their two hour meetings, crushed and alone. No problem. I politely explained that coming from eight years of professional IT experience, there is a way these things are done, and a way they aren't done...and things are being handled badly.

I can't bring the issue to the team, they don't even talk to me. I'm the young kid and simply put...a temp.
My function there was simply to be there so they had coverage on the phones for meetings, coverage for vacations, coverage for all the crap they didn't want to do. No problem.

So I emailed the consulting firm and let them know that my contract is up in two weeks, and I'm not interested in extending it.

Today I worked through the day and got pulled in to a meeting.

They decided to let me go now.

So as of 4pm CST, I'm unemployed again.

I've got an interview in the morning and I didn't want to be there anyhow.
It's not a total loss. I'm glad to be free of such an unethical company.
I just feel like they stole my thunder.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


My first big worry...

How many folks are going to try and build ultra killer lists for apocalypse?

Instead of simply taking all the stuff you got, try and balance it out so it's a fun game for everyone...how many guys will start buying 40 carnefexes just so they can field it?

How many guys are going to get in to the spirit f the game, and how many will play to the letter of it?

Game System...

So I'm tinkering around with designing a simple game system to go with my End of Days game. This is due to some of my friends saying I should do it and my saying I could do it.

I'm posting my rough texts here for easy access so i can pick up and tinker with it from anywhere with internet access.

As many may have noticed, it borrows heavily from a few sources: The Old WoD system and SR4 as well as Savage Worlds and a few others systems I like. The intent is to make a quick easy system.

Game System v.1

Game System v1:

The game system is built upon a couple basic mechanics:
Dice Pools comprised of attribute dice and skill dice, rolled to determine the number of successes. The standard Target Number is Five (5).
For simple actions, rolls are unnecessary. For standard actions only one success is needed. For more complex actions two or more successes may be needed.

When rolling dice, the result of a Six (6) “explodes”, allowing further re-rolls.

Keep track of the number of Ones (1) you roll! If you roll more ones than success, the action fails. If you roll no successes, and roll two or more ones, those ones mean a critical failure, fumble or botch!

There are three main portions of a character;
Attributes which define the physical and mental potentials of a character.
Skills which define what a character knows or can do… these are usually learned.
Abilities which are special talents which further define the character.


Basic Attributes:
Attributes range from one to six and represent the number of dice rolled to achieve a success in any given circumstance.

In character creation all basic attributes are purchased with build points.
For attributes the following examples explain what the numbers mean:

One (1)
An attribute of one is considered underdeveloped. Possibly a child or young adult. Maybe old or infirm.

Two (2)
An attribute of two is low-average. Possibly someone who rarely uses the attribute or is recovering from an injury.

Three (3)
An attribute of three is average.

Four (4)
An attribute of four is well trained, possibly using that attribute on a daily basis.

Five (5)
An attribute of five indicates superior abilities based on this attribute. This character is likely superior to most people he knows in this area.

Six (6)
An attribute of six is exceptional. World-class. Maximum human potential.

Brawn- This is a measure of physical strength. Lifting, carrying, pushing and pulling power. Usually depicted visually as big muscles.

Health- This is how healthy, sturdy, hardy and generally resistant to harm a character is.

Agility- This is basic hand-eye coordination, reflexes, quickness, dexterity and reaction time, all rolled in to one.

Smarts- This is cognitive ability. Reasoning. The ability to memorize and correlate data.

Common Sense- This is should be self-explanatory. This is the practical application side of smarts…Often learned through life, experience and hard-knocks.

Feelings- Empathy, intuition, hairs standing up on the back of your neck…this is your sixth sense.

Derived Attributes:

Charm- This is the average of Common Sense and Feelings. This attribute determines how smooth you are socially, usually a combination of situational awareness and being able to read people.

Looks- This is automatically a Three (3) unless altered by an Ability (with a positive or negative adjustment). May be purchased with build points.

Perception- This is a catch-all for any sort of sensory perception. This is purchased with build points.

Willpower- Strength of will, the character’s ability to resist compulsion. Guts. Spirit. Inner-Fortitude. Whatever you want to call it. This is purchased with build points.

Taint- This is a measure of the loss of your humanity through interaction with toxic environments, mutations, illness, arcane powers and other forces vying for the souls of men in these latter days. This starts at zero and builds to six at which point the PC becomes an NPC and is removed from play.

Skills are usually gained through training, though sometimes they come naturally or through another sort of learning called The School Of Hard Knocks. Either way, they define what a character knows, what they’ve learned and what they can or can’t do.

In play, skills are rated from Zero (0) which is Untrained to Six (6) which is Exceptional and the maximum human potential. Ratings also equate to the number of dice this skill adds to the Dice Pool.

The skills in this system are very broad in definition and few in number. While this may seem limiting let me explain how it is used.

For example, Athletics is a skill. It encompasses running, jumping, climbing, acrobatics, gymnastics and everything that could possibly fall under “Athletics”. Depending on how it is used, or what is being attempted is going to determine which Attribute goes with it to create the Dice Pool.

For Swimming, Athletics may be Brawn-based in order to catch the kid slipping downstream…but may be Health-based when trying to swim underwater a long ways.

Skills can be used many different ways, with many different combinations of attributes depending on the situation. The determination of which attribute to link to will be determined collaboratively between the narration of both the GM and Player, with the GM being the final arbiter.

Each skill will be labeled either Physical or Mental depending on which type of attribute is appropriate at the time. This will narrow it down for the GM and Player to decide which attribute would work best in the given situation.

Skill List:

Active Skills
Athletics (physical) - This encompasses running, jumping, climbing, acrobatics, gymnastics, swimming etc.

Stealth (physical) - This covers sneaking, hiding, and otherwise trying to remain obfuscated…in any setting.

Ranged Combat (physical) – From thrown weapons to shooting a bow to firing a rifle…this is combat outside of arm’s reach.

Close Combat (physical) – Anything from wrestling, to fisticuffs, to sword and knife-fights.

Dodge (physical) – This is the general skill for getting out of the way of anything.

Pilot (varies) – This is a catch-all skill for piloting anything from a motorcycle, to a pickup, to a dump truck, to a 747 jumbo jet. [Note: this could vary greatly. Pilot + Smarts to get the vehicle started, then maybe Pilot + Agility to keep it on the road.]

Ride (physical) – This is stay on the back of a vehicle or animal without falling off and breaking your neck in the effort.

Etiquette (mental) – This is the skill to allow someone act appropriately to the situation or circumstance.

Perform (varies) – This could be acting, singing, juggling, dancing, oration, etc.

Manipulate (varies) – This is an extremely broad skill which encompasses negotiation, intimidation, fast-talk, or otherwise schmoozing to influence people one way or another.

Tech (varies) – This skill includes all sorts of technical skills including building, repairing as well as lock-picking. This can also be used to speak/understand technical jargon.

Concentrate (varies) – This is the skill to focus all your attention to one area, one action, or even multi-task.

Investigate (mental) - This is a skill that covers research, and gathering information.

Survival (varies) – This encompasses survival in all sorts of terrain and climates as well as hunting and foraging as well as tracking.

Knowledge Skills
Knowledge (Smarts) - Unlike the rest of the skills, this one is unique as it is always based on Smarts, yet is not a single skill. Knowledge as a skill needs to be coupled with a topic…like Knowledge Science, or Knowledge Math or Knowledge 20th Century Comics. Each one is a separate skill.

Been busy...

Put in my two-weeks notice today.
Explained to the consulting firm that I'm not interested in extending my contract. I sent this in an email to the consultant services supervisor yesterday from my home email.

When I got to work today, I had an email waiting from yesterday saying that the firm wanted to extend me for a year. Heh. Ironic huh.

Anyhow, I'm not extending.
Not interested in staying at this company.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

End of Days: Campaign Setting for Savage Worlds


2020- After decades of tension between the United States and the European Union over issues ranging from oil rights to war in the Balkans and political tampering in Africa, the United States is ejected from the United Nations and NATO. The US stands alone.

2021- An outbreak of the Avian Flu rips through Mexico City and within weeks hops the border to the US. Hundreds die in a month.

2022-Within six months outbreaks of the Avian Flu spread to every major metropolitan area on the planet. The virus mutates and in the first year the death rate is in the millions. The plague has returned.

2023- Various cures spring up in the US, UK and in the EU, but none are effective for more than alleviating symptoms. Riots and social breakdowns are rampant across the world. The military forces of every nation are used to maintain order. The Avian Flu subsides within a year.

2025- In the face of rumors of grievous civil rights violations in Africa, Asia as well as South America the forces of the North Atlantic Trade organization, including the newly readmitted US send military forces to help police the areas in direst need.

2026- In an act of unprecedented terrorism, dirty bombs go off in Washington DC, New York City, Los Angeles, Houston, London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Athens, Moscow and Sydney…all the same day. This is called Black Monday.

2027- As nobody claimed the attack, western forces threatened violence against nations of the various Middle Eastern nations, and soon, military forces were engaged again in the deserts of the Mid-East. Seizing the oilfields of the Middle East as well as in Alaska, Canada and in the arctic, Terrorists trigger the largest single largest series of oil spills and explosions in history, jeopardizing the fossil fuel production for the entire world.

2027 to 2030- While the world warred over fossil fuels, the Avian Flue returned with a vengeance. Mutated, stronger and even more deadly, somehow altered by the effects of the “Dirty Bombs” earlier in the year…The Plague returned…with a vengeance.

The details of the next several years are sketchy at best.

The Mutated Bird Flu was devastating. The largest metropolitan centers were hit first and hit hardest. Hospitals, already crowded turned away the sick by the truckload and emergency services weren’t able to even put a dent in the vast numbers of the infirm.

Basic social services broke down world wide. Governments, unable to keep up with the sick, and breaking down internally from its own sick employees lost control. Chaos reigned. Soon there was nobody to contain the riots, nobody to keep the lights on, or process food, manufacture tools and the world simply ground to a halt as humanity fed on itself.

Fast forward a hundred years.

The great cities of the world are now overgrown and deserted by man.

Mankind itself nearly didn’t survive to this point, and may not survive the coming years either.

There are no central governments anymore, only scattered bands of humans struggling to survive in the wild.

The icons of the technological age are everywhere, broken, disused, and unable to get the parts or fuel needed to keep it running. This is a new Dark Age.

This is a Post Apocalyptic setting for the Savage Worlds System,

Mankind is recovering from the brink of extinction. Think of a cross between The Road Warrior and The Postman.

Most items are bartered though some areas use coinage. Paper money is all but worthless. Man survives in small colonies of farmers, ranchers and a small number of tradesmen. Soldiers and warriors protect and raid settlements.

Paths in to the wild are dangerous. Predators lurk: beasts as well as men.

Firearms are rare and prized. Ammunition is harder to come by.

Fossil-fueled vehicles are even rarer, there’s no more oil production or refineries. Most electrical production plants are beyond repair. Batteries are a highly valued commodity.

Cities can’t sustain life, no safe food, no clean water. They are often walled off dead-zones. Often places like these had nuclear reactors which have long since gone critical from lack of maintenance and support creating massive irradiated or poisoned areas and waterways.

Strange cults have sprung up all over. Some humans have begun showing strange almost supernatural abilities even beyond death.

Welcome to the End Times…

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Madison GW Games Club

So yesterday I posted my intentions to start a Games Workshop Games Club for the Madison Wisconsin Area. I emailed all the 40k and WFB gamers I had addresses for or posted on all the local forums my idea.

I also started up a quickie forum at http://willwerks.net/phpBB/index.php so people could start talking about it.

Thus far the word has been spread and it is positive. Only real resistance is from the head of the Wisconsin State Warhammer Fantasy League who doesn't want to create something new, just add a 40k element under his group.

So far so good!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

"We're going on a Jedi"

What is "going on a Jedi"?
It means when you take off with no planning and "use the force" to get where you're going.

So yesterday I was up at 5am to get to Katz' place.
Got there and we tripped it out to Robin's place in Evansville.
Arriving first we talked some smack till Chad and Ray arrived.
Adam was a bit lost, and Robin "talked him in".

On the road we had a blast.

First off, you have to realize the interesting mix of personalities.
Ray, Chad, Myself, Katz...all pretty gregarious, sarcastic, and fairly witty. Adam chimes in with some brilliant jabs as well.
Robin of course is our solid straight man, being the driver and the most messed with.

Chaos ensues and everyone is in for a wild ride.

We hit Rockford and breakfast at The Machine Shed.
More hillarity ensues.

Afterward we realized we didn't have a map newer than 1993, and it was a state map only.
Oh, did I mention there was a Cubs game that day as well?

So we missed our exit, and drove WAY in to Chicago.
Ray was navigating, but we were all heckling him and Katz knew another way.
Eventually we get Robin in to the spirit of Chicago driving and we get off the freeway in to Chicago.
Driving cross-country we headed back towards where we were supposed to go, but there was no entrance...it's an expressway.

The trip to the Battle Bunker took four and a half hours and a few hair-raising dives across three lands of traffic, screams of "OH GOD, OH GOD WE'RE GONNA DIE" and "YEEEHAW".

The Battle Bunker was packed. People playing inside on tables (beautiful tables BTW) as well as outside under the eaves on ad hoc tables.
It was a beautiful day and the battle bunker is in a sheltered eave. Great day to play outside actually.

The shop area was small, and constricted. Stock was fair, items double-pegged (multiple items per peg) and much of what we were looking for wasn't present. Forge World is behind the counter in boxes. We all looked through the Apocalypse book (OMGFWTFBBWSPQR it's awesome. Chaos players will laugh because it's got old codex info instead of new).

We piled up on our purchases, about $600 for everyone combined. I got BFG Space Marines for me and Dark Eldar for Katie (it's what she wanted).

Back in the van and off towards Weber Grill!
We were focused on food at this time so no distractions would lead us astray!

Weber Grill was easy to find (Schaumberg) and we got right in and seated.

Bread was first: a kind of pretzel Bread soft and tasty with a couple butters...cheese and plain whipped.

Steaks and ribs were next. Best steaks anywhere IMO. I had a Blackened Rib Eye that was super awesome (I get the same thing every time). Steaks were perfect. Average prices too! We gorged ourselves. Then we had some decadent desserts.

Making our way to the van we headed back north.

We stopped briefly in Rockford at a game store. Spendy.

We headed back to Evansville and home.

So much good chatting and socializing. I haven't laughed that hard in a year.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Original 40k Artwork stolen

Original 40k Artwork stolen. Article here:

"Had a very apologetic email and phonecall this morning from the folks at Warhammer World, Nottingham, where five pieces of original atwork from the first WH40K rulebook were on display as part of the twenty year anniversary celebrations. Someone apparently broke open the display frame and stole one of the pieces, an A3 ink-on-paper illo showing armoured eldar under fire on a stairwell in a huge interior (Bottom right of the display case in the picture below). The other pieces are safe and will be redisplayed at a later date.
Staff were upset and embarrassed, as the pieces were on loan from me, and I'm confident they will do everything in their power to recover the item. Meanwhile if anyone hears anything please let us know."

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Social Contract in 40k

The concept of Social Contract is brought up on the OCT WD and I wanted to expand a bit on it.

The actual definition of Social Contract comes from an Indie RPG forum and is a bit convoluted, but what folks generally refer to as SOCIAL CONTRACT has to do with the expectations of players in a game.

When people get together to play a game; any game, whether Scrabble or 40k or D&D, they all have expectations.

Some people want challenge, some want catharsis. Some are interested in being social and rolling dice with friends while others want competition. Every single one of these is acceptable AS LONG AS THE OTHER PLAYERS ARE THERE FOR THE SAME THING.

This is the heart of social contract.

Before playing games with people, it's important to be up-front about what you're interested in. Be honest about what you expect out of a game. What kind of game do you want to play?

In terms of 40k, it means defining and talking about, up-front whether you are there for competition or just for an occasional bit of die rolling. being honest about whether you are interested in competing or fine-tuning your army list for competition...or just having a quick fun game.

There is nothing wrong with playing to win. There's nothing wrong with playing competitively...or with playing just for fun with no concern for winning or competition.

The trick here is A. Communication. B. Honesty. and C. Playing with people who are interested in the same thing.

Especially with the upcoming Apocalypse but also important in every game, Social Contract is an important tool in ensuring everyone has a good time playing the game.

In Apocalypse the key to the game, the very goal is to have fun and use all your minis to have these massive brawls.

The important thing about Apocalypse is in keeping with the spirit of the game, enjoying the crazy moment and having a lot of fun rolling a lot of dice.

In every game though, as long as everyone playing, you and your opponants are roughly on the same sheet of music as far as what you are playing for, and what you want out of it...it'll likely be a fun game.

When people play for different reasons, the game usually sucks. This is universal. Whether Scrabble, 40k or D&D, if the other players are playing for some other reason than you...I can almost guarantee the experience will be less than somebody hoped for.

Take Scrabble for example:
If I play competitively, taking extra time to score only on the high multipliers against my wife who is just playing for fun, plunking down words as she gets them, she's going to get schooled, and likely not going to have fun because I'm only playing to beat her, interested in my fun not hers.

Alternatively, if I play competitively with another competitive player, we'll likely have fun.

Take D&D for example:
If I'm playing for the role playing experience of it, while others for the tactical warfare aspect, they are going to bored while I RP with the Bard, and I'llbe frustrated with the combat maneuvers.

Alternatively, if I play D&D with other folks interested in heavy RP, or if the combat heavy people play with other combat heavy folks, everyone will have fun.

Take 40k for example:
If I play competitively, and break out my GT list against Tauman and his brand new Tau army, I doubt he's going to have much fun.

Alternatively, if I play Tauman with a quickie fun list and go easy on him, playing just for fun, he'll likely have fun too.

Or Tauman can play another newbie, or I can play another competitive GT player.

The important thing here is talking about it and being honest about your interests in the game, and playing with folks with similar goals and expectations. This is what Social Contract is about, and I think if people use it, people will get more enjoyment out of games of every type.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


A HUGE Thanks to The Bell of Lost Souls!


An excerpt from my wife's Blog, LJ, etc...Women Gamers.

White and Nerdy? Yeah, I am.

But things were not always thus. In fact, I remember back in 1999, a guy I worked with asked me out. I said no. It wasn’t because he was a bad guy, or had a huge hunchback or anything. It was because I had heard him say one time that he and his friends played the Star Wars role playing game. I thought, “Oh. My. God. What a dork!!”

In October 2000, I met Jeff. A tall, cute, funny guy and we hit it off right away. About a month later, he told me that he was running a game (Shadowrun) and he HAD to have a 4th player or it just wouldn’t work. Since I had no idea what was involved in these games, I relented. I figured it was just the one night, so it’d be okay. BOY, was I in for a surprise!

So that was my first experience in the world of RPGs. And don’t you think that I enjoyed it right off the bat. I felt nervous each and every session. Not wanting to disappoint Jeff or have the other players thinking I rode the short bus to the game. In fact, it’s only really in about the last 2 years that I’ve begun to actually get in to the roles more. Maybe it’s that I’m more comfortable with my “real life” self.

One of the things that is so great about gaming (both RPGs and minis) is that it is not real life. It is a fantasy. So even though my real life is being a slave to the daily grind of work, dishes, etc, I can be whatever I want in a game. I can be an ass-kickin’, trash-talkin’ so-and-so. I can be a doctor, a space ship pilot, a cop…you name it. And in the minis games, I can shoot yer ass with a cannon or blow you to smithereens with some futuristic weapon of mass destruction. It’s very cathartic.

Now picture it, winter 2003, in Longview, WA. Jeff had purchased a high elf army and we were snowed in. For a week. That was when I started to learn to paint. It was hard and I got frustrated. I painted like a 3rd grader with a roller brush. (As I look back, I see how bad I really was.)

But Jeff was always encouraging me. Telling me I was doing well and it would just take some practice. In truth, we were both fairly new to the painting thing, so we were progressing together.

When we moved back to WI in 2005, we were able to set up a great painting area in our place with all the lighting, brushes, paints etc. We have 2 bookshelves stocked with minis and all the accessories.

One night, Jeff asked if I’d like to go with him when he went to play Mech Warrior with some guys at a local game store. I asked how long the game would be, since it was on a week night. “About an hour” he said. Again, I think I had a sucker stuck to my forehead. Anyway, we went and I got roped into playing. It was mini robots moving across the board, shooting at shit and blowing shit up. I liked the concept. It was me and 5 guys. Sweet. I was a hit and there were several comments to the effect of “I wish my wife/girlfriend” would play. After one particularly successful night of dice rolling on my part, the guys made me a foam tiara that says “dice queen” on it.

*Jeff made me put this part in.* Everywhere we go, I am a rock star. My reputation precedes me that I’m the gamer chick and how lucky Jeff is that his wife plays and paints, etc. He brags about it to anyone who will listen.

It is kinda like that everywhere we go. I’d say easily 90% of the significant others don’t play and/or can’t stand the idea of even trying to play. That really blows my mind.

Jeff and I do everything together. EVERYTHING. There are a lot of times when we will stay home to just do nothing with each other rather than going out with friends. And our idea of nothing is putting a movie on in the background while we work on assembling/painting “little dudes”.

I can’t get my brain around people whose SOs don’t at least give this stuff a try. I know that not everyone can be with their SO 24/7 like Jeff and me. But come on girls, give it a shot. The guys will love you for it!!

For a time, there was a group of us ladies called the Geek Chic Collective who would get together about once a month. We would go shopping, get our nails done, buy dice to match our new nail polish and then go have margaritas. It was awesome! Real life has prevented an outing recently, but all of us are still gaming.

All the games I have played of Warhammer Fantasy or Warhammer 40K have been with the armies that Jeff has. I’ve had a great deal of fun. Jeff is very patient as I try to figure out what each type of guy can do and explains how everything works. I have my own dice – for Warhammer as well as for RPGs. It has now reached the point where I have more dice than Jeff. Wow.

Last week when we were at WH40K league night, I told Jeff that I wanted to get my own army. One that I would assemble, paint and play myself. He was beside himself with excitement and proceeded to tell all the guys there that I was looking through the different types of armies to see which one I wanted for my own. (My precious.)

I decided on Necrons. I love the look of the skeleton/machine combo. They look fierce and they have a bunch of cool stuff for the army like scarabs and the Monoliths. SWEET. So far, I have 40 ‘dudes’, 10 bases of scarabs (4 per base) and 3 destroyers assembled. I have to put together the wraith, the lord and the monolith that I have. And I think from what we were looking at last night, I’ll probably get a couple more wraiths. MWAHAHAHAHA

One night we were at a game store and I picked up the Citadel Foundation Paint set and took it up to the register. We know the owner of the store so I told her it was my birthday to get the special discount. She looked at Jeff and said “Is this what she wants?” Basically stating that the paints were for him and I was just using my birthday to get them cheaper. I guess she couldn’t have known that I had been anxiously awaiting buying those paints for 2 months – ever since I first saw them in the White Dwarf magazine.

That’s another thing. I knew I was a nerd when the White Dwarf is sitting on MY nightstand. And I’m taking notes on which base coats to use and drybrushing and inking…

Boy, how things can change. I guess the gist of this rambling is that I think more women should get involved. Hell, paint a glitter army like my friend Kate wants to do. There is no rule against it that I’m aware of!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Sons of Magnus

The Sons of Magnus
A DiY Chapter of CSM by Elchimpster, edited by Viscount Vash

Founded M29 as the XV Legion or better known as The Thousand Sons, referring to the original 1000 Astartes who were implanted with the gene-seed of Magnus the Red.

During the Horus Heresy, the XV Legion was employed on several worlds as a part of the Great Crusade. Several Battle Companies were utilized to bring lost worlds in to compliance and a number of those companies did not take part in the defense of Prospero when the vile Leman Russ and his Space Wolves Legion burned Tizca, City of Light to the ground.

For nearly 32 years the 5th, 6th, 7th and 13th Companies fought their way back to rejoin their Legion.

During this period, Odunn, Captain of the First Company, along with the Captains of several other companies met in secret warrior lodges. The main focus of concern was the division within the legion between Ahriman and his librarian elite and the common Astartes warriors and their diminishing importance. The binding factor of the legion had always been their love for their Primarch Magnus, but Ahriman was very persuasive…and Magnus was becoming more and more distant ever since the Emperor’s betrayal and Leman Russ’ assault.

Later, word of Ahriman’s plans for the legion leaked and some of the Battle Captains were wary of the concept of Ahriman’s “Rubric”. Within the confines of the Warrior Lodge, First Captain Odunn and his most trusted Captains set in motion a plan to usurp Ahriman and his Cabal of Librarians. With the assistance of some of the more junior Codiciers, Odunn assembled a force of nearly five companies of Thousand Sons and embarked on a quest to locate an Eldar maiden world and specifically a Warpgate in order to infiltrate the Black Library and capture its contents intact.

This plan of course was found out by Ahriman, and he was enraged at the plot. Odunn confronted Ahriman and threatened to petition Magnus himself, but Ahriman only laughed in scorn. Magnus had his own concerns and would not be disturbed by such petty squabbles amongst his warriors while Ahriman was working on such far-reaching plans to save the whole of the XV Legion from Damnation and most importantly…mutation

Odunn and the Warrior Lodge attempted and failed to warn Magnus twice; thwarted by Ahriman’s Cabal as well as Magnus’ own blind trust in his most powerful children, Ahriman and his Librarium.

In the face of the conflict, avoiding a civil war, the First Captain Odunn and a cadre of three battle companies, with limited librarian support embarked on a dire mission to save the XV Legion before Ahriman in his arrogance did something that would destroy the independance of thought in the less powerful psykers and non-psykers of the legion, reducing them to mindless slaves of his own will.

Arriving months later on Salishan IX, Odunn and his cadre located the Eldar Warpgate and through the aid of his trusted Librarians, they were able to enter the Eldar Webway.

Odunn’s efforts were too late, for while in the Webway, Ahriman with the aid of his cabal of elite librarians cast what would be later called The Rubric Of Ahriman. Within the Webway, the members of Odunn’s cadre were protected from the power of the Rubric, but not from the onslaught of the Eldar. Locked in battle for an untold amount of time, the Thousand Sons Marines fought their way clear of the Webway to a strange foreign planet. Falling back from the continued assault, the Thousand Sons destroyed the Webway Portal and slaughtered the few Eldar who were stranded. Losses among the XV Legion were heavy.

Stranded on this lost world, they named it Gnosis, and set about trying to regain contact with the outside world. Soon they were contacted by a rogue trader and through subterfuge and later an overwhelming assault they commandeered the vessel Herculean Effort and began re-establishing themselves.

Years passed, and the lost Thousand Sons expanded across the sub-sector, engaging in piracy and starting a program to re-grow their ranks. Word of the Rubric spread to the ears of these lost Thousand Sons and the news was hard to take. After a council was held on Gnosis, their new “Home world” the Sons of Magnus were born.


*Sons of Magnus are a CSM "legion/ warband".
*Chaos Undivided, often with ties to Tzeentch.
*There are no Cults of Khorne and those who might naturally be inclined towards the God of Slaughter almost always become Chaos Spawn or Possessed.
*Librarians (Sorcerers) are still considered an HQ choice but can never be the force commander.
*No Obliterators and Raptors.
*Over the centuries some smaller cults have appeared, Slaanesh and Nurgle specifically, on planets that have been conquered, though Tzeentch is by far predominant.
*Mutations are mostly common in the cult followers or would be cultists, and are viewed as weaknesses of the psyche and flesh. Mutants are chained, and expended in war as rapidly as possible.
*Aspiring Champions and those who are deemed a threat are often used as hosts for the summoning of Daemons.

The effect of First Captain Odunn’s exodus was the salvation of a fraction of the warrior core of the Thousand Sons Legion, as well as a number of Librarians. The main difference is that the Sons of Magnus no longer have the high proportion of psykers that the parent Legion had. Subsequently, they also don’t have the high mutation rate either.[Originally the Thousand Sons were prone to mutations due to the high proportion of psykers in their genetic makeup, and also later due to being within the Eye of Terror. The Sons of Magnus have neither of these issues; they have far fewer psykers in their “genepool” and their homeworld isn’t within the Eye of Terror but simply on the far reaches of Imperial Space.]

The climate within the Sons of Magnus is that of mixed bravado and distrust. Leaders who are destined for becoming Captains often are adherents to Chaos Undivided, while those who are destined for lower rank often take on Marks of Tzeentch in order to excel and surpass their betters…and in doing so make themselves a target of distrust and often suicide missions or having a daemon bound within him. Warriors rule the Sons of Magnus, and are seen as the last vestiges of the glories of their former Legion. Blame for the Fall of the Thousand Sons Legion is placed firmly upon Ahriman who is universally hated by all members of the Sons of Magnus. Magnus is seen as betrayed as is the entirety of the Legion by the accursed Rubric and Ahriman’s hubris. Loathed even more than Ahriman are the Space Wolves.
The Sons of Magnus are organized along typical Space Marine lines for the most part. Captains command companies Sergeants command squads. Terminators typically form the elite of the force. The small cadre of original Thousand Sons is now very few, comprising the loyal bodyguard (chosen) of Odunn, called the Blood of Odunn while Odunn himself is simply styled as Master or Lord of the Sons of Magnus.

The Librarium remains, though it is kept as “The Black Council” and council for their Lord Odunn, to whom they are wholly subservient to.

0- HQ with Mark of Slaanesh, Nurgle or Khorne.
0-2 HQ with Mark of Chaos Glory
0- Khorne Berserkers
0- Obliterators
0-1 Chaos Sorcerer as HQ
0-1 Raptors
0-3 Thousand Sons
0-1 Plague Marines
0-1 Noise Marines
All else as normal per Codex: Chaos Space Marines

"For Magnus, Prospero and The Lost!"
"Remember Prospero"

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Dark Heresy, 40k RPG

While at GenCon I got to speak for a while with one of the developers of the game. We talked for a while on system and differences and similarities between DH and WFRP.

One of the core differences is that while in the Old World, you can start off as a Rat catcher, and work your way in to becoming a Knight of the Inner Circle, Wizard Lord or High Priest of Ulric...the adventurer in the 40k universe doesn't have the same social-climbing ability. You start off as a Hive ganger juve...and in 20 years, at the end of your life likely, you'll still likely be a Hive Ganger.

In the WFRP system there is a lot of career-hopping, but little in the way of depth WITHIN a career for diversity. If you want diversity in WFRP, you change careers.

In Dark Heresy however, this is handled quite the opposite.

In Dark Heresy, the Character careers will have a lot of customization available within them to make a wide variety of characters, within a single career. You may be a former guardsman, but now you can tool out that guardsman career in to becoming a cool sniper guy, or a close combat monster, or have depth in any number of ways...within the same career.

Also, weaponry in 40k Dark Heresy is going to be very lethal. A Bolter round will very likely kill you. A Meltagun will almost certainly kill you. A lasgun can most certainly kill you. Everything...can certainly kill you. Remember, 40k weaposn are based on Marine Equivalents, and for the most part (at least for a bit) nobody is going to be a Space Marine. There IS a Deathwatch book expected next year though.

I believe the expectation that the adventures will be largely investigatory, searching for and hunting down cults and heresies as junior retinue for an inquisitor and that sort of thing, and combat will be the garnish, not the whole meal (and in a universe as deadly as this, believe me, you don't want to be a mere human in combat with these weapons, in these environments).

Thus far I'm stoked about the system, and the setting. A lot of the old familiar parts of the system will remain the same. The core mechanics are the same. I can't wait till February!

Friday, September 7, 2007

My wife is going Necro...

Okay, not really. She sat around while I was playing 40k looking for the new army she wants to collect. She decided on Necrons. I woke up this morning to find the GW website up on the computer, open to the "Who are the Necrons?" page.

Is my wife cool or what?

We have a long weekend this weekend, being off today. She's helping me with my Iron Snakes and last minute touch-ups. I'm pouring through the Chaos Space Marine boxed set and codex (which I love for the record, regardless of what the powergamers think). Never collected a chaos force before. This'll be fun!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

From Bell of Lost Souls: 40k RPG Dark Heresy

Hi folks. Its been a pretty quiet couple days on the news front. Today, Black Industries put out their teaser Warhammer 40k Roleplay adventure up for download.I always liked Warhammer fantasy Roleplay and played the heck out of it waaaaaaaaay back in the day. Its nice that GW finally got around to making a 40k version if after only 20 short years :)In any case, check it out, it seems like a cool start.

40k Roleplay Teaser Site


I've played Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay for years and I have to admit it's my favorite system currently. I was thinking of trying to tweak WFRP to work in a 40k universe, but since the actual system is coming out in Feb 08, I figured I'd wait and save myself the trouble. I've run a 40k RPG several times using Savage Worlds and it's turned out great. Everyone had a blast, myself included, but unfortunately it was a bit kludgy.

I have to admit, I really dig the Bell of Lost Souls blog.

They have a ton of useful information and their news is pretty doggone fresh!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007


As you may know...a large portion of my life is taken up with games. Games of all sorts. Mostly miniature games (where you use little toy soldiers) and Roleplaying Games (ala D&D and a myriad of other titles).

I've been playing RPGs since 1983, and I started with AD&D. I didn't play much. D&D and the like was frowned upon. Being a devil-worshipper's game and all. Much like Ouija Boards.

A started playing more often and regular in college. That would be 1989. A variety of systems: Champions, Dream Park, Marvel and DC Heroes. The Star Trek RPG, Chill...and my new favorite, Call of Cthulhu!

Since that day I've played a LOT of games. I've been fortunate to be involved with game development and most specifically illustration since 2002. That's when I got serious about it all. Game Design and writing adventures. GMing a lot, and learning about what makes games tick. I've done a lot more illutsration than writing, but my writing is picking up and I hope to get a couple more adventures "penned" by the end of the year.

Orky Goodness from Warseer

These rumors are hot off the presses from Warseer. Original poster was Uberbeast. Current info places Codex:Orks as a January release.

-Yes, the choppa rule is gone. Just ebout every ork including bikers and kommandos get furious charge now though. Shoota boys, slugga boys, and 'ard boyz have been made into a single troop choice, and have dropped in points.

-The Warboss is the same cost, but has T5 and comes with some basic weapon in addition to a wide list of choices ala the new codex format. Taking a warboss allows you to take a unit of nobs as a troop choice instead of an elite choice You no longer need to have your army led by a warboss, Mekboy army 'ere we go!.

-Tank busta boyz have new models, always shoot at vehicles when they can see them, and have some wonderful upgrade options including a tankhammer which is a Str 10 two handed weapon in close combat. Squig bombs....?

-Deff koptas are a new option in the standard list now, count as jetbikes with hit and run special rule and can be given a wide range of weapons including a claw which counts as a powerfist and a one use bomb.

-Mega armour nobs and regular nobs each have their own elite entries now and can be taken independent of the warboss. Mega armored nobs have the slow and purposeful rule and have dropped in effective pointcost by 10 points.

-Killa kans have dropped in point cost while dreds and both units weapon options have gone up slightly.

-battle wagons have dropped in points have a ton of new weapon options including. Mini battle cannon anyone?

-many ork weapons have increased their ranges including the zzap gun with has added 12" to its range from last edition.

-Shokk attack gun is in with a great new model and a crazy misfire chart so don't roll doubles.

-Grots are still in the book so don't worry, the little green beasts are here to stay and they can still clear minefields but don't provide cover saves anymore. Squig hounds are still in as well.

-Nazdreg is gone, replaced with some freebooter pirate character with a nasty gun, and armor made of melted golden teeth. Also a wierdboy character with poisoned attacks and a goofy looking model with grots clinging to it.

-ork warbikes have lost their special rules allowing them to shoot as they go into combat.

-lootas and flash gitz are both in, flash gitz have some amazing weapons options including a painboy and cybork bodies.

-no clan rules.

UPDATE: here are a few more rumors to add to the list.

-You may now substitute the size of the mob for you leadership check becoming fearless if over 11 models strong.

-Waaagh: once per battle all infantry units get fleet of foot.

-No more mobbing up.

-Weirdboyz now have a random d6 roll every time they use a psychic power, and let me tell you some of them are fantastic if also very random. You can upgrade the weirdbos to a warphead to give him a chance to re-roll the power.also

-Stormboyz have gone down in price, but now you roll a d6 every time they jump and they take a casualty on a roll of 1.

-Taking a big mek as an HQ choice allows you to take a single dred as a troop choice

-burnas count as power weps in CC but get no special pen bonus against vehicles. You cannot fire the burna before CC if you want to use them as power weps.

-Kannons still exist. Grots now have a BS3 which helps when using the big gunz.

-There are six new guns in the list which includes two ord and a bunch of powerful above average strength weapons with random effects. Most of these weapons are restricted to specific units however, as are many of the original weapons from previous edition. Including the rumored str7 gun.

-Waaagh banners give +1 WS to all models in the unit

Leeched from http://www.the-waaagh.com/

Army Special Rules:
• Furious Charge
• WAAAGH!!: once per game, call a WAAAGH, entire army gains fleet for that turn. Any unit that rolls a ‘1' for fleet takes a wound, but still acts normally.
• Mob Size: Units of 11 or more orks count as fearless; if any unit fails a Ld check, roll 2d6 and compare the result to the number of orks in the mob- if the result is less than the number of orks, the Ld check is considered passed.

HQ units:
• Warboss: gains T5, special rule “Da Big Boss” allows 1 mob of nobz/meganobz to be taken as troops. Same price, not mandatory or ‘0-1'. Can have a warbike.
• Wyrdboy(!): stats of nob, and has a chart of 6 psychic powers. At the beginning of each turn you roll a d6 to see which power he MUST use that turn. For 30pts, he may be upgraded to a Warphead, who can re-roll for psychic powers. The powers are as follows:
1. ‘Eadbang: as Frazzle below, but place the template over the wyrdboy.
2. Frazzle: shooting attack that auto-hits with Range=24" S=6 AP=3, assault 1 blast and pinning.
3. Zzap: shooting attack that auto-hits with Range=36" S=10 AP=2, assault 1 and counts as a melta weapon.
4. Warpath: the wyrdboy and any unit he is with gain +1 attack for that turn.
5. ‘Ere We Go!: the wyrdboy and any unit he is with are removed from the table and automatically come in via the Deepstriking rules.
6. WAAAGH!: the wyrdboy and any unit he is with get a free WAAAGH! move (fleet) that does not count as their WAAAGH! for the game.
• Big Mek: has Ld8, special rule “Da Big Mek” allows 1 “Deffdred” (Ork Dreadnought with name change) to be taken as troops. Can take Shokk Attakk Gun (more on that later). Comes with toolz and may take oilers. Slight points increase. Can have a warbike.

Elites units:
• Nobz Mob: unit of 3-10 Nobs. The mob may take bikes, and WAAAGH! Banners which grant the unit +1 WS (the wording is “any model may take”, with no indication of one per mob!). May take various weapons and equipment. One may be upgraded to a Painboy with Painboss stats, syringe and toolz, and may take orderlies; allows the whole mob to be upgraded with cybork bodies. The mob may take either a trukk or battlewagon as transport.
• Meganobz Mob: unit of 3-10 Mega Armoured Nobs. May take various weapons, and be transported by either a trukk or battlewagon.
• Burnaboyz Mob: unit of 5-15 burnaboyz. All are armed with burnas. Up to 3 may be switched to meks for free, who replace burnas with toolz and oilers and may take kustom mega blastas, force fields, or other stuff.
• Tankbustaz Mob: unit of 5-15 tankbusta boys. All are armed with Rokkits(!). Up to 2 may replace their rokkits with Tankhammers, close combat weapons that allow them to strike with S10. The unit may include 3 Bommsquigs, which when released count as an automatic S8 hit against the nearest enemy vehicle on a 2+, or the nearest vehicle period on a 1. One may be upgraded to a Nob who can take various equipment.
• Lootaz Mob: unit of 5-15 lootas. All are armed with Deffguns, which are heavy d3 autocannons. Up to 3 may be switched to meks for free, as with burnaboyz mobs.
• Kommandoz Mob: unit of 5-15 kommandos. 2 may take heavy weapons, one may be upgraded to a nob. Infiltration, Move Through Cover.

Troops units:
• Boyz Mob: unit of 10-30 boys. 3pt decrease, no choppa (though ‘choppa’ is the term used for c.c.w. throughout the book). 1 in 10 may have a heavy weapon, so you need 30 to get the current standard of 3 (they’re pushing the horde idea here, the bastards ), and burnas are no longer an option. One may be upgraded to a nob, who can have various bits. The entire mob may swap its choppa and slugga for shootas for free. Up to 1 mob in the army may be upgraded to ‘Ardboyz. The mob may be transported in a Trukk if it has few enough models.
• Grot Mob: unit of 10-30 grots. Same cost, gain BS 3, lose better footing and living shield but keep mine clearance as “It’s a Grot’s Life”. There must be a 1 to 10 ratio of Runtherds to Grots. Runtherds can take various kinds of equipment, including a new grabba stikk item which reduces the attacks of one enemy model in assault.

Transport units:
• Wartrukk: same stats and small points increase. Can transport up to 12 models, those in mega armour count as 2 a piece. No longer precisely follows the vehicle damage chart; if a ‘vehicle destroyed’ or ‘vehicle explodes’ result is rolled on the regular chart, roll another d6 and consult the chart that follows:
1-2: Kaboom!: the trukk explodes and the orks inside take each a S3 hit, and must test for pinning.
3-4: Kareen!: roll the scatter die and move the trukk 3d6" in the direction indicated (the ork player chooses if a hit is rolled), and then apply the Kaboom result in the new location.
5-6: the vehicle is destroyed, but no models take any wounds and the orks do not have to test for pinning (don’t recall the name).

FA units:
• Stormboyz Mob: unit of 5-20 stormboys. 3pt decrease, and gain fleet of foot (separate from WAAAGH! Rule). One may be upgraded to a nob who can take various weapons.
• Warbikez Mob: unit of 3-12 warbikers. 5pt decrease, Hard to Hit increased to 4+, and have a regular 4+ save. Lose Psycho Blastas. Dakkaguns replace TL-Big Shootas with Range=18" S=5 AP=4, Assault 2. One may be upgraded to a nob who can take various weapons.
• Warbuggies: unit of 1-3 buggies. May be upgraded to trakks, which allows them to re-roll terrain tests. Come with TL-Big Shootas free, which may be upgrade to other weapons.
• Deffkoptaz Mob: unit of 1-5 deffkoptas. Come with TL-Big Shootas, count as Jetbikes, have Hit and Run and Scouts. May upgrade big shootas to rokkits or mega blastas, and may also be equipped with buzzsaws and bigbomms (don’t have the rules for those at present).

HS units:
• Looted Wagon: ork equivalent of a rhino (circa dark angels/blood angels codexes) before upgrades, but open-topped and can transport 12 models. Has special rule “Don’t Press Dat!”, presumably as current breakdown (can’t recall atm). May replace transport capacity for a Boomgun for much increased points (more on that later). May have up to one skorcha, as well as two rokkits or big shootas, in addition to the boomgun. Can take various upgrades.
• Big Guns: unit of 1-3 guns with krew. 10pt decrease for kannons base, which may be upgraded to lobbas or zzap guns. Kannon loses Ordnance rules for shell shot, lobba remains the same, and Zzap gun is now Range=36" and melta. The unit may take up to 3 Ammo Runts.
• Flash Gitz Mob: unit of 5-10 flash gitz. Nob stats, all come with ‘eavy armour and Snazzguns (more on them later). The unit may take More Dakka, Shootier, or Blasta kustom jobs, all of which do the same thing. One flash git may be upgraded to a painboy, who acts the same here as with the Nobz Mob above.
• Killa Kanz Mob: unit of 1-3 killa kans. 10pt decrease, with WS 2 and BS 3. Each kan must choose a weapon from the following list in addition to its c.c.w. (list is from least to most expensive weapon): big shoota, skorcha, grotzooka, rokkit launcha or mega blasta. May take grot riggers or armour plates.
• Deffdred: unit of 1 dreadnought. Comes with 2 c.c.w., and must take 2 weapons from the following list in addition (list is from least to most expensive weapon): big shoota, skorcha, rokkit launcha, dreadnought c.c.w. (Each gives +1 attack, potential 6 attacks on the charge), mega blasta. May take grot riggers or armour plates.
• Battlewagon: 30pt decrease and gains Front Armour 14. May take a Killcannon (more on that later) for much increased points, which reduces its transport capacity to 12 from 20. Only vehicle which may take a Deff Rolla. May also take 1 big gun for various points and up to 4 big shootas/rokkits. May take various vehicle upgrades.

Vehicle Upgrades:
• Grot Riggers: same as current.
• Armour Plates: now as extra armour on imperial vehicles.
• ‘Ard Case: turns an open-topped vehicle into a close-topped one.
• Reinforced Ram: allows tank-shocking with extra bonuses (can’t recall atm).
• Deff Rolla: causes d6 S10 hits on any units tank-shocked(!).
• Red Paint Job: same as current.
• Stikkbomm Chukka: don’t remember....
• Boarding Plank: don’t remember....
• Wrekkin’ Ball: don’t remember....
• Grabbin’ Klaw: prevents an enemy vehicle within 2" from moving in the next turn.

• Choppa: c.c.w.
• Slugga: same as current.
• Shoota: Range=18" S=4 AP=6 Assault 2
• Power Klaw: same as current.
• Big Choppa: +2 strength.
• Burna: same as current.
• Shoota/Skorcha: same as current.
• Shoota/Rokkit Launcha: same as current.
• Big Shoota: same as current.
• Rokkit Launcha: same as current.
• TL-Shoota: a twin-linked shoota....
• Dakkagun: Range=18" S=5 AP=4 Assault 2
• Deffgun: Range=48" S=7 AP=4 Heavy d3
• Grot Blasta: same as current.
• Grotzooka: Range=18" S=5 AP=6 Heavy 2 Blast
• Kannon (Frag): same as current.
• Kannon (Shell): same as current, but does not count as ordnance.
• Killkannon: Range=24" S=7 AP=3 Ordnance 1, Large Blast
• Kustom Mega Blasta: Range=24" S=8 AP=2 Assault 1 Gets Hot!
• Lobba: same as current.
• Shokk Attakk Gun: Range=60" S=2d6 AP=2 Ordnance 1, Large Blast. Rolls of 10+ for strength count as S10. If doubles are rolled, consult the chart that follows:
Double 1: mek and models within d6" die automatically.
Double 2: ???
Double 3: ???
Double 4: ???
Double 5: ???
Double 6: ???
• Skorcha: same as current.
• Snazzgun: Range=24" S=5 AP=d6 Assault 1
• Zzap Gun: Range=36" S=2d6 AP=2 Heavy 1 Melta
• Boomgun: Range=36" S=8 AP=3 Ordnance 1, Large Blast

• Attack Squig: simply grants the model +1 Attack.
• Bosspole: can’t remember.... same as current I believe though.
• Mega-Armour: 2+ armour save, Slow and Purposeful, comes with TL-Shoota and Power Klaw. The Shoota may be replaced with kombi weapons, or (IIRC) big shoota, rokkit launcha, skorcha. Can’t recall on kustom jobs.
• Cybork Body: same as current.
• ‘Eavy Armour: same as current.
• Doks Toolz: work on a 4+ as base.
• Meks Toolz: work on a 4+ as base.
• Grot Oiler: allows the Mek to re-roll failed toolz rolls.
• Grot Orderly: allows the Painboy to re-roll failed toolz rolls.
• Warbike: same as current, except it confers a 4+ save instead now.
• Ammo Runt: same as current.
• Kustom Force Field: 5+ cover save, vehicles count as obscured.
• Stikkbommz: a combination of the two...available to most.
• Tankbusta Bommz: AP=2d6+6, available only to Tankbustas (and Kommandos I think, but not certain on that).
• Gitfinda: can’t remember....an orky auspex, methinks.

Special Characters:
• Ghazghkull Thrakka: stats are new warboss with +1 WS, Wound, and Attack. Still has Adamantium Skull and Proffit uv da WAAAGH! (Which is changed to fit new WAAAGH! rule, as such: all units now get a free 6" fleet move instead of doubling initiative, does not count as the WAAAGH move for the game) with 2+ invulnerable included. Comes with cybork body, bosspole, mega-armour, stikkbomms, big shoota, and has special rule “Da Big Boss” as per regular Warboss. Costs a point less.
• Mad Dok Grotsnik: much more expensive. Has fearless and special rules “Da Big Dok”, which allows every unit in the army to be given cybork bodies for +5pts/model, and “One Scalpel Short of a Medpack”, which I do not no the rules for as of yet.
• Wazzdakka Gutsmek: over twice as expensive as he was before. Basically a Warboss on warbike, only better. Stats as warboss, comes with kustom mega-blasta, power klaw, slugga, meks toolz, stikkbomms, bosspole, and “Warbike uv da Aporkalypse”. Has special rule “Da Bike Boss” which allows any number of Warbike Mobz to be taken as Troops.
• Old Zogwort: Snakebite Warphead character. Stats of an ork boy with BS 0, T 5, 3 wounds and Ld 8. Has special wargear “Nest of Vipers” which allows him to make d6 extra attacks that always wound on a 2+. Also has special psychic power “Zogwort’s Curse” which works just like the panzee power Mind War except that if you win the d6 roll, the enemy character immediately turns into a squig! While he does roll for powers just like a regular Warphead, he can always choose to use the curse instead.
• Boss Zagstruk: still leads a mob of stormboyz. Stats are as a nob with +1 Ws and Ld. Comes with special wargear “Da Vulchaz Klawz”, which are power klaws that strike at initiative. Also allows his unit to deepstrike and assault in the same turn. More expensive.
• Kaptin Badrukk: No clue really. Stats are nob with +1 Ws and Ld, and he has a 3+ save, somehow. Didn’t really look at him, just know the stats from the summary. He leads a mob of Flash Gitz.
• Boss Snikrot: still leads a mob of Kommandoz. Has nob stats with +1 Ws, Strength and Ld. I remember this guy being really, really neat, but I didn’t note anything down, so outside the summary I am unfortunately unable to be certain about anything.

That’s about it! There are, as you can well see, some things I can’t recall atm. But I’m working on it with my friends and such, and we should have a pretty complete list going within a couple more visits to the ol’ friendly LGS. Some Special Characters added in now, and other stuff coming as it does. I’ll update this post as I am able to clamp down more stuff with certainty.

Friday, August 31, 2007

It's Friday...

...and I SO don't want to be here.

It's 75, sunny, not humid, perfect. Not a cloud in the sky. Gentle breeze.

Found a cool website for my Warhammer 40,ooo RPG needs:

Good stuff!

Another is: http://belloflostsouls.blogspot.com/
Fantastic blog with all kinds of cool ideas for Pre-Heresy 40k play!

Now I just want to get through the day and get home. I could sleep for a week!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

If I were interviewing...

...say...Dan Abnett, or Matt Forbeck, Robin Williams or Billy Crystal...what would I talk about? What would I ask?

I'd ask about Warhammer!

Do you play Warhammer Fantasy? 40k? Battlefleet Gothic? Inquisitor?

If so, what do you play?

How long have you been playing?

Do you get to play often?

What kind of player are you? A goof off, a generally friendly player, total competitive bastard?

Do you read the Black library fiction? Which do you like/ dislike?

Are you in to the minis-painting part of the hobby?


Monday, August 27, 2007

Iron Snakes Chapter, 1750 Points

WiP photos under the link:http://picasaweb.google.com/OrdoHereticus/IronSnakes

This is my new list for the League. I'm generally a friendly player. The League however is quite competitive. For me the important thing is keeping it true to the Chapter fluff, specifically Brothers of the Snake, by Dan Abnett.

I'm up against largely infantry and possibly Daemons. No mech players in this league (though there are on occasion a rhino, predator, Defiler and the like, but they are few. No Land Raiders.)


1750 Pts - Space Marines - Iron Snakes Chapter 1750 v4

HQ: Codicier (1#, 137 Pts)
Force Weapon; Bolt Pistol (x1); Psychic Hood; Veil of Time
Psychic Hood []
Terminator Honors [], Frags

Elite: Venerable Dreadnought (1#, 133 Pts)
Walker; Dreadnought CCW; Storm Bolter; Assault Cannon; Venerable: Extra Armor; Smoke Launchers

Troops: Tactical Squad (10#, 221 Pts)
Tactical Squad Lycurgis
Boltgun (x7); Plasmagun (x1); Heavy Bolter (x1)
Brother Sergeant Ajax Power Weapon (x1); Boltgun; Terminator Honors, Combat Shield [], Frags
+Apothecary, w/ Narthecum & Reductor.

Troops: Tactical Squad (10#, 221 Pts)
Tactical Squad Lysander
Boltgun (x7); Plasmagun (x1); Heavy Bolter (x1)
Brother Sergeant Xanthus []
Power Weapon (x1); Boltgun; Terminator Honors
Combat Shield [], Frags
+Apothecary, w/ Narthecum & Reductor.

Troops: Tactical Squad (10#, 256 Pts)
Tactical Squad Cleomenes
Boltgun (x7); Meltagun (x1); Missile Launcher (x1)
Brother Sergeant Ptolemy []
Power Weapon (x1); Boltgun; Terminator Honors
Combat Shield [], Frags
+Apothecary, w/ Narthecum & Reductor.

Troops: Tactical Squad (10#, 257 Pts)
Tactical Squad Damocles
Boltgun (x7); Flamer (x1); Missile Launcher (x1)
Brother Sergeant Priad []
Lightning Claw (x1); Boltgun; Terminator Honors
Combat Shield [], Frags
+Apothecary, w/ Narthecum & Reductor.

Fast Attack: Assault Squad (10#, 270 Pts)
Assault Squad Pelleas
Deep Strike ; Frag Grenades; Bolt Pistol (x9); Close Combat Weapon (x9)
Brother Sergeant Antoni []
Power Fist (x2); Purity Seals; Terminator Honors,Frags

Fast Attack: Assault Squad (10#, 255 Pts)
Assault Squad Parthus
Deep Strike ; Frag Grenades; Bolt Pistol (x9); Close Combat Weapon (x9)
Brother Sergeant Goront []
Power Weapon (x1); Purity Seals; Terminator Honors
Combat Shield [] Frags

Advantage: Purity Above All
Advantage: Trust Your Battle-Brothers
Disadvantage: Flesh Over Steel

Total Cost: 1750


My new DiY CSM Legion/ Chapter

A splinter of the Thousand Sons legion, I'd like to introduce you to the Sons of Magnus

I'm Back!

The 'ague has passed and I'm back at work. Hopefully any reprocussions for my absence will be minor (playing catch-up on emails, and the like).

The past few days have been spent at home, doing nothing. Well...almost nothing: I did strip all my "extra" Space Marines (the ones not already in my Blood Ravens army list) and primed and basecoated them. The shoulder pads have been coated in a foundation color as close to white as possible, so the white going over the top of it should be flawless.

The next league match on the Thursday after next should be a suprise as I unveil the Iron Snakes Chapter. I have 4 tactical squads of 10 Astartes, 2 Assault Squads of 10, and a Venerable Dread and a Librarian leading the expedition. Every Squad, Brother Sergeant, The Librarian and the Dread are named appropriately. So far the unit is looking sharp!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I've got the 'ague.

A nurgling must have passed by because I'm coming down with the creeping crud. Feels like the flu. I hate getting sick in the summertime. Maybe being home I'll get some artwork done.

Gen Con and More!

So Gen Con was a blast. I was very frugal and purchased nothing (though eating out was spendy enough). It was tough as there was so much cool stuff, but I restrained myself and remembered that i have a car about to go tits up, so I needed to save as much money as possible.

Got to see friends and hang out a lot. Played some SR4 and Talisman.

Photos here:

Finished Brothers of The Snake. I'm going to strip my space marines and make up Iron Snakes! What a story!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

7.5 Hours till VACATION!

That's right true believers...seven and a half hours till I'm on vacation. Off to GenCon Indy for a few days of fun, games and drunken debauchery.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Tears of Pure Powergamer Rage...

...are flowing the world over in regards to the new Chaos Space Marine Codex. I can't help but laugh.

I think they did a good job in balancing the CSM codex, maybe a bit overboard even...even to the point of making things "generic". Now Daemonettes, Nurglings, Bloodletters, Horrors, Furies, etc...all the same thing. You can still use the models allright...but the statlines are the same: Lesser Daemons.

Same goes for Greater Daemons. Bloodthirsters, Lord of Change, etc...all the same.


You can still use your models and they are just fine, just toned down.

Weird thing is that Plague Marines, Berserkers, Thousand Sons and Noise Marines are available as troop choices for every army. Strange. So you can easily do an undivided force with a little of everything which doesn't seem very fluffy. Meh. Whatever.

Slaanesh got a big boost and the uber weapon and power.

Thousand Sons now have Bolters with AP3, and a 4+ invul save.

Nurgle is more or less the same, still solid.

Word Bearers are proper-fucked.

Black Legion is more or less the same, just gets the same toning down everyone does.

World Eaters are fine, and they get more Heavy and FA options.

Making "Legion" armies is going to be a matter of painting them up that way versus taking all the super over the top powered SC and tooled up daemons.

"And there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth"

Sunday, August 12, 2007

GenCon or Bust!

So Wednesday morning at 4:30 we'll be on the road for GenCon Indy.

We'll be helping set up and tear down for The Last Square (our local FLGS).

If anyone needs to get a hold of us...

Katie's Cell: 608-957-6381
Jeff's Cell: 608-239-0829

We'll be there Wednesday thru Sunday, so if anyone wants to get together, get grub, game, drink, or otherwise hangout, give us a call. We're staying at the Embassy Suites with bull, caine_hazen, darykk etc.


Sorting out...

Well, after a couple posts, things have sorted themselves out. Everyone is all right, water under the bridge and we're counting this as a "re-do".

I'm glad for it. I certainly didn't want to lose friends in the deal.

Friday, August 10, 2007

So last night...

...was 40k League night, and I gt to play Paul. Paul is a very experienced 40k player. He's good. He plays Death Guard, and he also is the guy who runs the League.

So we're playing in a swamp, and the end result was a Solid Victory for the Death Guard. No complaints, it was a good game, Paul was great. I played smart this time, and the die rolls were almost entirely in my favor (man...Paul got new dice and rolled unbelievably bad). End result, good game.

I had a good time.

Nobody brought up the flap from the forums and I was fine with that. I figured I'd just leave it alone. Let it go.

After the game, on the way home, I was thinking "maybe my concerns are unfounded."

My biggest concern; really what it all boils down to is that I worry about Katie playing these guys. Specifically Cole and Seth, but Josh and Tom are a concern as well. They aren't bad guys. Quite the contrary. I think they are great! It's just that in the game, they are total competitive bastards, and really, they'll likely crush Katie with no chance of her doing anything...and their conscience wouldn't bother them a bit. "Learn the game and get better" they'd say.

Thing is, I know Katie, and like a lot of newbies, if you crush them regularly, they'll give up and go do something else because they simply have no chance.

This isn't about me. Not at all.
I play knowing I'll lose. I don't care. No biggie, I'm still having fun. Katie isn't like that...and I'm protective.

So on the way home I'm thinking that maybe my worries are unfounded. Maybe it's alright. Maybe Seth and Cole are going to be cool and maybe not necessarily crush Katie. Maybe Josh would help her and recommend courses of action. Maybe Tom would be patient as she makes mistakes.

I went to bed with a positive outlook, and hope that maybe I was wrong.

This morning I got up and got an email saying that on the "Super Secret Forum" they were complaining about my post(s). I post too much and they don't want to hear my ideas.

I DO post a lot. I come up with a lot of ideas to toss around for discussion. I like group discussion and collaboration. I like tossing out ideas. Apparently some people take offense at that.

So much for that happy, warm fuzzy feeling.

Now I know people talk about me behind my back.

Some "friends" huh?

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Warhammer: Competitive versus Friendly Games

Yesterday was a day of overwhelming frustration. I got pissed off. Probably more pissed off than I should have. I think part of the reason for this is due to a feeling of betrayal. Maybe partly for feeling like a fool, or simply misjudging people.

Let me lay down the scene.

I'm playing in the Last Square, Wayward Star, Warhammer 40,000 League. This was explained to me by others as a friendly league where cool guys come and play 40k, newbies and old-timers alike are welcome. I know a lot of the guys in the league because I played in the last iteration of it.

Now, while I'm fairly inexperienced in this version of 40k, I have played since it was Rogue Trader, and I'm basically familiar with the material. I'm not a competitive player. I'm a collector, painter, and 40k Fiction buff...and occasional player.

When the league started, I decided not to play because what I prefer to play: friendly games instead of competitive tournaments. A number of my other Friendly Player friends (Robin, Katz) jumped on board, so I figured, it would be safe to play.

Now in the previous league, we had a number of really good, experienced, competitive players: Seth (Black legion), Cole(World Eaters), Nate (Word Bearers), Josh (Eldar)and Paul( who filled in when necessary with either Space Marines or Chaos). These guys were pretty much unstoppable when they played. Josh in particular was undefeated, and I think Nate was as well. Mike is a friendly player and pretty good as well. Damon I think is a friendly player(Daemonhunters).

Last league I was slaughtered in every game (Blood Ravens).I had a crappy list I spent five minutes on because I didn't intend to play in the league, just a pick-up game...and i couldn't change the list. Sucktastic. Either way, it was still mostly fun. No complaints really.

This League we have the same, except that Paul is playing his Chaos full-time, and we added Eric (Death Guard)[awesome player], Levi (who has really improved with his unstoppable Lost and the Damned, with the Bloodthirster)...and a number of newer players and Friendly players: Robin(Crimson Fists), Katz(Blood Angels), Mike(Dark Angels), me (Blood Ravens) and Damon (Daemonhunters). Josh is playing his undefeated system of Eldar only in Cityfights again. Tom is playing his Ork Mob in cities with the same Ammo Dump strategem. Ted...well...Ted is Ted.

Again, the Forces of Chaos are unstoppable. Josh is untouchable when he's in a city, and absent when not.

So the other day I made a recommendation to the league for the next iteration of the league:

I'd like to see a greater emphasis on sportsmanship and fair play. I explained that I don't want it to seem like a damnation of the players that they are not sportsmanlike, or that there is no fair play, but that there is always room for improvement and I'd like to see it move in a specific direction. I tried to be diplomatic, tactful and fair in my request. It seemed reasonable, though I understand if it wasn't necessarily clear to all.

For example, when playing new players, inexperienced players, friendly players, it's not necessary to steamroll them. Play nice. Maybe give em a break. Maybe play to their disadvantage a little. I mean, realistically, they are going to curb-stomp these poor folks anyhow, does it really matter if it is a victorious slaughter or a solid victory?

The main purpose in this is because we have a mix of friendly players playing in the same campaign as competitive players, and as usual, the competitive players are riding roughshod over the friendly players. Also, at the end of last league it was "The Plan" that my wife would play in this league. She likes 40k and wanted to play. She's woefully inexperienced, and really if she's just going to get owned every single game, with absolutely no chance of making a dent on her opponent, she (like many other newer or friendly players) will simply drop out and lose interest. being my wife and all, I don't want to see that happen.

Here's where the problem falls:

My assumption, what I believed, and what I hoped, is that the guys, who I considered friends, would play nice. Give the new guys and friendly players a break, and maybe kill them a little less efficiently. Maybe just be cool about it (Nate's example is at the bottom)


Actually, the part that caused the anger was that I was told that they shouldn't have to be penalized for playing better. They earned their right to kick the crap out of people and too bad, so sad.

I was stunned.

My own thought is that friendly players and competitive players shouldn't play together.

I believe that the focus is on GAME as in it's to be FUN*. That means fun for both sides. I think it behooves us as friends to have at least a bit of concern that our opponents are having fun as well. That's what friends do.

[*I realize this isn't universally true for everyone]

What I found out is that the game is focused on competition: winning and losing, and based also on constant evolution of the ultimate efficient killing army list and usage of game strategies and tactics to go for the almighty WIN!

My own thought on that is, "where is the challenge in beating up on someone who has almost no chance to even come to a draw with you?". It's like beating up the retarded kid at school. It's not about a challenge, it's about getting to catharsis: get that overwhelming Victorious Slaughter!

I went in to this League to have a good time, expecting to lose every single battle because my lists aren't as competitive and I'm just looking to have some fun moving around little toy soldiers and rolling dice. Hang out with friends. I want my opponents to have a good time as well as myself.

What I found out is that the people I considered as "friends" have no concern or consideration for my fun. They just want the win, and really don't give a shit about whether I enjoy myself or not or more importantly whether the other Friendly Players and Newbies have fun or not. The Newbies in the league...they're getting owned. The friendly players...getting owned. (except Damon, he's pretty darn good).

I dunno.

The only responses have been pretty much: "They earned their bones, and they've earned the right to thug the newer players and friendly players all they want. Tough shit. Get better and more competitive or shut the hell up" (I'm paraphrasing a lot and exaggerating some as well.)

It wouldn't be so bad if someone...anyone chimed in and supported me in this. Instead, I'm the lone stranger, only guy and a whiner.

Am I simply unrealistic? Am I high? Am I asking something unfair?
Is it too much to ask to have the guys who want to play competitively, play each other...and if/ when they play the guys who really have no chance...give em a break and slaughter them a little less efficiently?

Since I'm apparently the odd man out, I'm not bringing it up anymore.

I would like to mention that it's entirely possible to thug someone and make them still have a good time. Nate was a prime example of that. Nate, arguably the best player in the league and I played last turn. Victorious Slaughter of course. I was wiped out to a man, and he still had three full units unscathed, as well as most of this other units (I did kill the Greater Daemon and the Dark Apostle and a number of marines from various units). While I did get thoroughly nuked, and I believe he would have done the same without his Daemons, it was a blast of a game, and Nate was very cool about how he played. It's like he handed me a shit sandwich, I ate it, and somehow he got me to like it.

THAT, is what I'd like to see. I don't mean that he has to drop his britches and let me drill for gold...just make sure the opponent has a good time too...or at least try.

My fear in this, is that new players, and friendly players will get tired of getting steamrolled, and stop playing...which means I have fewer people to play that I really WANT to play...leaving only the Competitive Guys.