Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Alright first of all anyone planning on taking a similar plunge ... I'd advise you look to a source like The Warstore as the retail price of the new WHFRP set is 99.00 United States Dollars. You can pick it up at the warstore for around 70.00 United States Backs of Green as of the authoring of this blog entry.
As stated in previous entries here ... I am torn about the revision of the WHFRP system. (for a very detailed review check this out ... thank you for the link Scott!)  The 2nd edition of the game was based in no small part on the classic 1st edition of the game which was in publication in one form or another from 1986 until around 2002 or 2003 (ish). It had a tremendously long run. In 2005 Second edition was published by Black Library directly and the game preserved much of the first edition mechanics. The game continued to be one of high player mortality, dark, dark old world fantasy that any true lover of the Warhammer universe craves.

Fantasy  Flight if they do nothing else well ... seems to be adept at adapting licensed products in a satisfying manner. Over the past five years I've gone from being a naysayer to a fan. I know that capitalism demands all that is good and pure must be periodically recast in a shiny new package ... especially in the RPG industry where the average lethargic, basement dwelling, be-gutted denizen ... spends a whopping ZERO dollars a year on their hobby.  Don't take my word for it ... RPGs are a dog in general in terms of game company profit but its neither here nor there if your interested in that topic delve into it yourself and on that note there is another blog post which really delves into that issue (along with massive numbers of other similar posts, board discussions, etc.). Suffice it to say that I believe this is potentially a new RPG model, is it the first attempt to break the mold on the old pen and paper RPG .. hell no ... I think 1977 had witnessed dozens of attempts. Everything from MTG to Dragon Dice to Video Game RPGs and MMOs can be seen as offshoots, but this is a board game/RPG hybrid being produced by one of the more successful board game manufacturers in the US market. Not just that ... but using one of the more successful gaming brands with decades of history and a legion of very loyal fans. At this point all I'm saying is perhaps this hearkens more either good things or bad things to come.  I must however ... check this stuff out for myself and therefore I ordered my copy and shall be DMing a game of it myself in the very near future. I will do my best to chronicle my assuredly haphazard, certainly half-assed ... foray into the world of board-role-play-games. I hope I receive my wondrous package before this weekend. One can only hope the UPS fairy is kind ... (ah yes she is also bringing me Invasion, Chaos in the Old World, Marauder and ... way behind the times here ... Battlestar Galatica the FFG board game ... which I have yet to play ... tisk tisk ... so 2008 .. I know).

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Potpouri O' RPG ... look at the hot girl with dice ... woot ... random ... SPAM SPAM

Ok ... I realize I haven't posted for awhile and I also realized that my original intention for this blog was to discuss my personal thoughts on the games I'm playing in/running/etc. Yes yes I've made unfullfilled promises pertaining to 40K army pics, etc. no good excuse other than I've been working on the armies yet too lazy to take pics ... at some point ... in the future ... I will indeed post such fabled pics.  Until then I've been playing in two D&D games, adding many new members to the home gaming group and still tilting at the windmill of forming an actual gamers club for my area.

One thing that came up on my home game board was a discussion about RPGs. Now to preface what is largely a re-post, I'll say that I've been looking at A) picking up with full intention of running the new WHFRP system from Fantasy Flight Games. In fact I put the order in to the Warstore for it today. B) I'm still in the formative (Bullshitting, almost to a point of commitment) stages of coming up with a SPACE MARINE RPG. Dark Heresy is not designed in any way shape or form to handle an actual Space Marine game. So using Dark Heresy without large amounts of alteration to that rule set isn't possible I'd prefer to just find a rules lite, ultra cinematic system to use. That need sparked a discussion regarding what system(s) would be the likely candidate for such an undertaking.

Out of some of these discussions regarding what system to use for such a game the larger, much more broad discussion of what RPG systems people in my gaming group like came up. I thought I'd post my response to that.  Basically the earlier posts in the thread sort of trashed the Savage Worlds system which I took a little umbrage with.  But really this mindset that I'm laying out here is where I'm at in terms of selecting a system for a Space Marine game. I'm really leaning towards Awesome Adventures, Sorcerer, In a Wicked Age, or a game like those. Burning Galaxy would be a dream to do such a game ... but I don't think I have the GM chops to pull that off yet (if ever) and I don't have a group with the desire/wherewithal at the present to handle such an undertaking either. 

At any rate this repost picks up in response to a post that basically stated Savage Worlds is a blah game system ...

While from a hardcore indie game fan perspective I understand perhaps not liking SW as much as other systems. But I do have to tout its utter versatility. It is the Swiss army knife of RPG systems IMO. You can do anything with that system. There are simpler systems that you "could" do anything with ... but for me things get to generic at a certain point. If your fortunate enough to play with a group of improvisational actors who are witty and really get indie RPGs ... well there is no reason to play anything but open ended rules-lite games. But your average game group is not comprised of such folks. I've experienced those uber, witty, high-IQ groups and its rockingly good fun ... but for me mostly that has been a conventions. My home games tend to be your standard D&D groups with a variety of players with variable RPG skills, interests and attention spans. That isn't a criticism of those groups ... I myself tend to be more distracted in my home games. At a convention I'm all business and really focused, at home I tend to be more casual. Its hard to pull off hardcore, ultra in character, role playing week after week. That is where a game like Savage Worlds shines I think and that is why games like 3:16, Tunnels and Trolls and InSpectres are AWESOME for one shots ... but will never make my top ten list.

To me those games and many indie RPGs are akin to a board game, something to run at a convention or to keep on the back burner for the times when a few people can't make your D&D night that week or as a special one shot, yet not as a long campaign. Savage Worlds could be run as a one shot or as a longer campaign it has that depth and versatility. Anyway what I like about Savage Worlds is it has the crunch and mini-pushing-around-ness of a 3.5 or 4E .. yet its not an overwhelming powergamer susceptible rule set. It has the low DM prep and plot point oriented focus of your standard indie RPG. Last but not least there are some great settings with many modules in print. The overall package of SW is hard to beat. Now game design, game mechanics, etc. etc. I have yet to play anything that knocked FATE/Spirit of the Century of f its pedestal in my all time favorite RPG system ranking.

Larry's (entirely opinion folks) Top Ten RPG list ...

Spirit of the Century/FATE
Mazes and Minotaurs
Arabian Sea Battles (insanely hard to find ... ultra out of print and I have been trying in vain to track down the rules which were printed in a small gaming magazine back in the early 1990s).
Dogs in the Vineyard
Savage Worlds
Warhammer Fantasy Role Play (2nd Edition)
Dark Heresy
4E D&D (Yes I like it this much)
3.5 D&D (I'd likely prefer pathfinder but I still haven't played it).

I have yet to experience Mouseguard/Burning Wheel and I'm sure if I ever experienced it in its full glory it would be on this list. I still haven't played many many critically acclaimed indie RPGs and I'm eagerly awaiting the chance. I love both the Rifts and Shadowrun universe ... hate the rules ... I think GURPS is cool ... but its an antiquated overly complex game system that is very much a product of the late 80s early 90s. D20 Modern, many Call of Cthulhu supplements, games and settings are cool. There are some really awesome games like Montsegur 1244 and Houses of the Blooded ... but it would just be pretentious to put those on my list. I've played them at conventions with game designer types ... and they are amazing ... but really unrealistic for your average home gaming group ... and therefore not really a top ten game. Overall though I was talking about RPG engines not really settings or genres ... that is my list as today ... now if you ask me next year at this time its likely to be different.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


Ok ... my first rant of the year. I will preface this by saying that hobbies are expensive. Whether gaming, antique cars, hot rods, maintaining hot women, vintage clothing, beer stein collecting, taxidermy, hunting, bird watching, hiking, etc. etc.  ... all hobbies are expensive in some way or another once you really get into them. Miniature games, RPGs, Video Games, Board Games, CCGs, etc. etc. can all become rather spendy. But if one is mindful of their spending and they target their spending ... one can really maximize what they get for what they spend (trust me I'm still working on this, but its logical ... remember attack the argument not the person ... that's logic!).

The DANGER DANGER ... rant is against army transports. Now I will not deny that BATTLE FOAM is an improvement over some of its predecessors, from the looks of it ... awesome stuff. My question is simply, do we need battle foam or any army transports? Or are there perfectly acceptable alternatives, that are much cheaper. Are these fancy carrying cases simply (and I've owned my share of spendy army transports people ... just posing the question) another status symbol? I know if you spend 1,000 hours painting an army its your baby and you want to protect it, yes indeed. If you have a golden demon quality painted army with tediously done, super fragile conversions ... ok ok ... maybe for you a $400.00 carrying case is in order. However for the average hobbyist out there ... come on people ... admit it ... the vast majority of us are not in the catagory of needing such an extravagance. There are alot of options that would do the job just as well yet cost 1/10 as much ... ranging from magentizing all the bases, to tackle box trays to cheap gun cases, to just buying the foam and making the trays and using an old suitcase. Are these alternatives as pretty or as trendy ... well depending on the amount of time you want to put in ... probably not. But even here if you want to get creative ... you might come up with an even cooler way to protect your minis and transport them ... yet at a much lower cost. Just food for thought ... before you take the expensive plunge into designer mini transportation.

The Return of the King ... AKA ... THE LORD OF EXCESS

FREEDOM ... from the tyranny of the all consuming holiday season!

Yet such freedom comes with a heavy price ... the ravages of xmas have ended ... the feasting has subsumed. The hearkening of a new year, rather a new decade has come and gone and what order there was is returning to my world. As the illustration aptly denotes ... I am the true master of all that I survey, lord of my manor, etc. etc. and as such I have complete control over all that stands before me ... indeed :)

Well the reality of the matter is as all kings and tyrants before me, the power of the purse strings as well as those pesky heirs to the throne seem to thwart me at every step. If only I had more funds in the warchest, and if only those heirs would mind their manners.

TYRANIDS!! They loom upon the horizon and my Orks are still on the bench (well phase II). Speaking of which!! I have a new camera (its nothing fancy ... as low quality as its predecessor) on the way and once it arrives pictures shall be uploaded of the orks, including the beginnings of phase II. I'm also going to desperately try to finish off some terrain before the bugs arrive. My camera will simply not work I thought it was the batteries, nope ... then maybe the flash card ... nope ... apparently its just done (either that or one of the kids dunked it in the potty while I wasn't looking). We luckily had several relatives over on xmas morning to capture the carnage on film. 

Anyway back to the bugs ... I have something on the order of 5k bugs sitting in a box, 6 carnies included. The new Trigon model is a must have ... I want 2 .... (really I'd love 10, *see purse strings comment above) ... I think I'll also pick up one of the new biovore models as well as 2 regular tyrant guards and 2 of the new shooty variants. Maybe a venomthrope or two and the death leaper ... other than that though I'm pretty solid on my endless swarm. I have a separate genestealer army that my wife has actually been working on with me that I'm also hoping to have in a playable state in the next month or two so I can take advantage of the new codex and the wave of excitement :)