Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Crap, We Only Brought the Gerbil Gun!

ErictheShed on TMP posted a few pics of the family pet running amok on the table:

"By Jove, Since we tamed this beast, we haven't had to pay for a single porter on this safari. Those cheeks do expand considerably."

Normally, we will see pics of cats upon the table, yet this rodent is far more terrifying than any 20-lb tabby.  I know plenty of gamers who visit the pet store for terrain, I might just piss off PETA and freeze dry a couple of these bad boys.  But do I use Matte Seal or Glossy?

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition

The biggest news during Historicon wasn't wargaming related. It was the announcement of Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition "sometime" in 2013.

Here's a summary of changes for the new edition.

NOTHING’S FINALThat’s the first thing to take away. Paul and Mike say clearly that what they’re describing is what they sent to Chaosium and what they hope will be the shape of the game, but that’s in Chaosium’s hands.

Chaosium’s Dustin Wright echoed that in a separate email: The rules are likely to change, maybe a lot, by the time they are published.
Dustin said Chaosium expects Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition to be published in 2013, but there’s no firm date yet.

So we have a possible 7th Edition, subject to change. I won't get up in arms quite yet.

As Paul and Mike put it together, Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition includes a core rulebook, a “slimmed-down” version of the core rulebook, and a separate players book with rules particular to player characters.

They restructured and rewrote the rules from the ground up. They revised everything to fit together more coherently than the 6th Edition, which was built out of the original rules as they evolved over time and a lot of individual rules and chapters that appeared originally in scenarios and campaign books.
Paul and Mike set out to strip the rules down and build them back up again, while keeping the game backwards-compatible so players don’t have to abandon 30 years’ worth of Call of Cthulhupublications.
“It’s the same game,” Mike says of the revisions, “and you’re making the same rolls, more or less, but it’s how you interpret those rolls and the rolls you can make.”

Backwards compatibility is always the biggest concern. CoC has had that going for it since the beginning.

Characteristics in 7th Edition are strictly percentile scores. There’s no Intelligence 12 with an Idea roll of INT x 5 or 60%; you have an Intelligence score of 60% and that’s your roll.

So when we need a difficult Int roll, they'll be rolling INT/5. I see no need for this. In the published books, I see requests for INTx1 INTx3 and INTx5. Multiplying up is far easier than asking for 60% of INT.
Skills have been reworked entirely, many of them consolidated, particularly combat skills. A single Fighting skill covers Fist/Punch, Kick, Grapple, Head Butt, and hand-to-hand weapon skills. A single Firearms skill covers Handgun, Rifle, Shotgun, and so on. Fast Talk is gone; Charm and Intimidate are in. The rules will include conversion notes to use old characters in the new rules.

Streamlining combat skills for the sake of simplicity is not a great concept, even for a game where combat is largely discouraged. Instead of having personalized areas of expertise, to have general skills that aren't realistic at all, it's far more fun to earn your skill increases from a fist fight, a shootout, and headbutting a cultist. While the replacement of Fast Talk seems an improvement, and has been done with other skills through the edition history, charm and intimidate make me first think of the misuse of Diplomacy when it hit the scene with D&D 3rd Edition. Not thrilled at all.

In their system a player can “push” a failed skill or characteristic roll, getting a chance to try again by agreeing to more dire consequences for failure. If you push a skill, failing the retry won’t just mean you don’t get what you want, it means you also might encounter some new threat or dangerous trouble. Player-Keeper communication is key when the players have to decide whether it’s worth pushing a failed roll.

All the minor penalties are gone. Instead there are three levels of success and the Keeper says which one the task requires: success at a standard roll with the full rating, success at half the rating, or success at one-fifth of the rating. Each value is meant to be recorded on the character sheet for each skill and characteristic for easy reference in play.

This just seems like a crutch for Keepers who can't figure out the vagaries of action.
Interestingly, the hoary Resistance Table is gone. Instead, in opposed tests the Keeper sets the difficulty based on how good the opposition is. If your opponent has about a 40% skill or characteristic rating, you’d roll at your full skill rating to overcome. If your opponent has something like 90%, you need to roll one-fifth your skill to overcome.

The Reistance Table is like THAC0 in AD&D. Once you "got it", you never worried about it.

“Pushing” a skill or characteristic isn’t the only way to turn failure to success. In 7th Edition, the Luck roll becomes a resource you can spend to adjust the results of skill or characteristic rolls.
Let’s say you need to roll 60 or less and you roll 63. You can spend three points of Luck to boost your odds enough to succeed after all. But now your Luck score is three points lower — if you need to make a Luck roll it’s that much less likely to succeed.
The 7th Edition rules mean to make the the functions of the Luck roll more explicit. Paul says, “It’s strictly for external circumstances beyond the player character’s control. So, you’re in the old house, you hear something upstairs. ‘I’m going to run to the kitchen. Are there any knives there?’ It’s a Luck roll.”

Importantly, spent Luck points don’t come back on their own. You can get them back only by calling on a new attribute called Connections during play.

Absolutely worthless. Burning Luck to achieve results that a smart Keeper would uses IDEA, KNOW, or LUCK rolls to avoid abject failure is ludicrous. (1) There are mechanisms already in play to promote advancing the story, and (2) Sometimes things fail, people! Not all investigations are successful. Players and Keepers need to deal with it.

Connections are things that are important to the character. A Connection could be anything — a person, a place, a thing, an abstract idea. “It might be your dear old mum,” Paul says. “It might be the house you grew up in. It might be your dog. If you want to play it, it might be your trusty .38 revolver. Faith in the Lord. Abstract concepts. Whatever is important to your character.”

You can call on a Connection to refresh Luck points, but only once in a given game session for each Connection. The amount of Luck you can refresh by calling on a Connection depends on the length of the game session, one point per hour of play. Or for a one-off, standalone game session, a flat five points.
Each character starts with three Connections. You can gain more through play, mostly by experiencing indefinite insanity due to catastrophic Sanity loss. Each indefinite insanity adds a Connection: Fear of Rats, maybe, or some kind of delusions. You can invoke that Connection, playing up the insanity, to regain Luck points.

But you can have no more than five Connections. And once you hit five, if you suffer another insanity, rather than adding a new Connection it corrupts or perverts an old one. So your Connection to dear old mum might get warped and ugly as your sanity erodes.

Interesting, but wholly unnecessary.

Insanity is often played for laughs in traditional Call of Cthulhu games, but Paul and Mike want insanity in 7th Edition to feel increasingly dark, not silly. At the same time they wanted to codify more explicitly what happens to characters who go insane.

With an indefinite insanity, not only do you gain a Connection for that insanity after you recover from the initial, short-term breakdown — the Bout of Madness, as Paul and Mike call it. You also are subject to further breakdowns, further Bouts of Madness, any time you suffer SAN loss later.

As for the shape of insanity in the game, they deliberately set out to take cues more from fiction than from medical manuals, delusions being more interesting to play than, say, catatonia. The form of a Bout of Madness depends on the circumstances. The rules include guidelines for the Keeper.

Might be interesting, particularly expanding the temporary insanities.

The Idea roll is still in the game, but it’s used a little differently. As Paul puts it, “It’s not, ‘Make your rolls. Oh, you failed. Give me an Idea roll. Oh, you failed that. Oh well, I’ll just tell you anyway, then.’”

The players can always ask for an Idea roll to gain a clue if they feel stymied. If the Idea roll succeeds, they gain the clue. If it fails, they still gain the clue — but the way they gain it puts them in danger.

Advice in the book about scenario design helps the Keeper set up the clues in such a way that the Idea roll won’t often be necessary.

Keeper Fiat is mentioned in the rulebook. Unnecessary.

It sounds like the combat rules have gotten a pretty serious overhaul. The traditional exchange of attack roll and defense roll is gone. Attacks are opposed skill rolls. The default result, if the combatants’ rolls are equivalent — both succeed, both fail, both succeed at 1/5, whatever — is that both take some damage. A lopsided result, where, say, you succeed at 1/5 but your opponent fails, means less damage for you and more for your opponent.

Grappling is gone as a separate skill or subsystem. Paul explains, “There are rules that cover things you might want to do, but there’s not a generic Grapple skill. It’s just Fighting with setting a goal.”

The Dodge skill is still there, but it’s mainly useful for trying to get out of the encounter altogether. You can attack or dodge, not both.

Characters are a little more resilient in 7th Edition. Death occurs at a negative hit point level equal to the HP score. If you have 11 HP, you die when you reach -11, not at zero. Along the way you become incapacitated and might be bleeding out, but there’s a larger buffer before death.
The core rulebook includes advice for the Keeper on considering the ramifications of how readily you kill characters. You’re encouraged to think ahead on what your goals are and how that should affect your scenario design.

As much as combat can get convoluted, I'm more comfortable with the current combat system than the one described above. And -11? Maybe if it's a fistfight, but the Shoggoth is still going to rip your head off.

The motivations for player characters putting their lives in so much danger gets deliberate attention in 7th Edition. The players book includes a chapter on building investigator organizations as a reason for characters to work together, a common motivation for them to investigate supernatural horrors, and a way to bring in replacements. It includes a number of examples.

On a more personal level, of course, Connections can be used to motivate characters. And the players book includes advice for players on designing characters to suit the game and to facilitate them becoming Investigators.

In the core rulebook, a chapter on scenario design includes advice on writing scenarios to motivate characters.

Who ya gonna call? Lovecraft and Sons Investigators! Some hints to aid with the African Big Game Hunter / Mobster / Crop Duster / Kung Fu Hobo party issues sounds promising.
Paul and Mike say the monsters of the Cthulhu Mythos are essentially the same, though their combat stats are changed to reflect the new rules.

Monsters are presented with advice for the Keeper on using them in play and adjusting them to suit the needs of the scenario and the campaign. Mike and Paul stress that it’s the Keeper’s job to decide what’s right for the game; the Keeper ought to take ownership of the game just as the players should take ownership of how they play their characters. “You’re the Keeper,” Paul says, “make it how you want.”

Mike says the longstanding monster categories are gone: “We’ve taken away descriptors like ‘lesser servitor race’ or ‘greater independent race.’ They mean nothing to me, and I’m certainly pretty sure they meant nothing to Lovecraft. There’s some sort of hierarchical system of codification of races that . . . make no sense in the Mythos. So we just took those away and now it’s like, a mi-go’s a mi-go.”k

Taking away from any semblance of order for a Keeper to keep his head straight. Not wise. A Mi-Go's a Mi-Go first and foremost, and a good Keeper adjusts the monsters for the campaign.

For 7th Edition they stripped out a lot of the spells that crept into the rulebook from scenarios over the years but weren’t crucial to the game. (Mike: “Our favorite is Call Fish.”)

Each spell has a baseline description. But each includes guidelines for making it more powerful. Spellcasters with higher Cthulhu Mythos skill and lower Sanity scores, and nonhuman monsters, can do more with magic. But it’s up to the Keeper to set the overall power level of magic and to decide how accessible it will be to the player characters.

As a rule of thumb, using magic costs Sanity, which makes you more prone to picking up new insanities, which become new Connections (“Can’t resist ancient arcane tomes”) that redefine your character in play.

But this has been going on, in some form for years. Putting it in print will create a reliance on it.

“It’s still Cthulhu as you know it,” Mike says. “It still plays the same, in a sense. What we’ve done is hung some bells and whistles, and tweaked some bits that we felt didn’t work so well. It’s the same game. We didn’t set out to write a new rulebook. We set out to refresh the rulebook.”
Not impressed

Friday, July 27, 2012

More Gnomes from Historicon

(Historicon) An AAR from Someone Who Wasn't There

So, Historicon has come and gone. What have we learned from the first H-Con in Virginia?

a) Most gamers who went there had a great time
b) Most dealers willing to comment had a great Thursday and adequate Friday sales. Many did not discuss Saturday/Sunday, either casually or officially.
c) The Fredericksburg Convention Center decided that despite Historicon being their largest convention to date, wargamers weren't going to use the restrooms onsite and closed one of them and did not have staff dedicated to cleaning the other(s). Hilarity ensues.

Before I continue, some pics I stole from @TheGonkDS on Twitter.
Some Urban Battletech Goodness
A Before or After Shot of the Kid's Alamo Game
The Much Ballyhooed Anglo-Zanzibar War
Walking space in the Dealer's Hall
I was going to have large collection of pictures borrowed from other blogs/forums/etc, but the computer lost my first attempt at this post, so screw it. Go Google them like the rest of the wargaming world.

Facility: The Fredericksburg Convention Center appears new, clean, and noisy. Someone comparing to "only" the dull roar of GenCon should not be considered a compliment. The AC covered the 100+ degree days adequately but the bathrooms were a horror to exceed those from the Host.

Food: Described as"ballpark fare" at major league prices. A few gems on the menu, but otherwise on par or worse than the Host. It seemed "no outside alcohol permitted" just caught the guys coming in from Wegman's with single bottles. There were plenty of guys with well stashed coolers, just don't tell the booze police. And as somebody whose familiar with Wegman's for over a decade, it gets old fast. I'm more encouraged by two words in my con vocabulary: Sheetz and Wawa.

Hotels: Adjacent hotels were close enough that some chose to go back to their rooms rather than visit the Black Hole of Calcutta called the rest rooms. No Frogger across Rt 30 down here. Worst complaint was the lack of stock fridges in the rooms.

Dealers: The only noticeable absence on the vendor list was On Military Matters. The dealer hall looked spacious. On a side note, the flea market sounded like a work in progress at a new site. They're still working on the Host all these years. Perfectly understandable.

Traffic: Many had zero problems, while others were crucified by the fickle mistress that is I-95. If and when I go down next year, I have a route that will completely avoid it, with only a 30 minute longer drive.

All in all, the con was a success, and if the FCC is responsive to the legitimate HMGS demands, I can foresee a summer drive to Virginia becoming a fixture of our family vacations.

Next year's theme bring some excitement to my middle aged heart. The Scots at Wars. Should the Gnome Wars games... interesting.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Apathy of New Releases (August 2012)

The publishing of the latest GTM has coincided with Historicon. It should not be a surprise that GTM will get a backseat. There are more new releases items being placed on my "If I hit the Lottery" from the dealer hall at a historical wargaming convention, then through traditional brick-and-mortar store distribution channels. As I state just about quarterly, I am no longer the demographic.

My Personal Want List
MOUSLING BARTENDER AND WENCH - Reaper - $7.99 -although I'm assuming it's singles of the tavern set.

The "Money is No Object" List:
Cthulhu in World Mythology (Atomic Overmund)- I'm assuming this expands on the references out of the rulebook, the description doesn't seem to go beyond that. $18.95

While we're in that vein: Call of Cthulhu Investigators Weapons: vol 1. Because when I play CoC, the first thing I acquire is a weapons cache. If done right, it should be informative. If done poorly, it will make the worst d20 product of yore seem like Shakespeare.



ARMORED RIFLE PLATOON (WINTER) BFM UBX38..............................$80.00
CRATERED COBBLESTONE ROADS BFM BB142      ..............................$45.00
EUROPEAN HOUSE (#3) BFM BB147                           ..............................$21.00
M24 CHAFFEE PLATOON BFM UBX33                       ..............................$52.00
                                                                       BFM UBX39..............................$29.00
Everything has the feel of GW prices, and in listening to podcasts and such, everything's a slight deviation of terminology from 40K.

I've recently seen an upswell of activity for Infinity, from Corvus Bell. While people seem to like the rules, there is little mention of their figures. Sin nce the average one seems to exceed $11.00, i'd rather risk money on one small book than two individual figs.

                                                                                           PSI CT35309............................$29.99
BATTLETECH: RECORD SHEETS 3057                         PSI CT35163............................$12.99
BATTLETECH: TECHNICAL READOUT 3057               PSI CT35124............................$34.99
SHADOWRUN: BALLOTS OF BULLETS                       PSI CT26455............................$29.99
                                                                                            PSI CT26412............................$14.99
SHADOWRUN: SPRAWL SITES - EUROPE                   PSI CT26501............................$19.99


Dream pod9
After the rack after rack of product being released at breakneck speed, what catches my eye? Heads.

I don't plan on being an expert on sci fi versions of Easter Island heads, but what? Don't know their size or game relevance to justify over $6 a head, but it may be sadder to consider that these are the best of their line of terrain items.

Lots of goblin/orc things, and best yet, each boxed set is under $25.00.

Miskatonic River Press
A Season in Carcosa and A Strange Dark One. An anthology of new fiction and a compilation of Nylarathotep short stories. Cool

Traveller: 2300AD - I believe everything but Renegade Legion and TWERPS from the 80's and 90's has been reproduced this decade. I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing.

Margaret Weiss

PATHFINDER: MIDGARD CAMPAIGN SETTING $39.99 softcover $49.99 hardcover

GAMEMASTERY MAP PACK: VEHICLE                 PZO 4040................................$12.99
                                                                                      PZO 9063................................$19.99
PATHFINDER CAMPAIGN SETTING: INNER SEA PZO 9251 ...............................$19.99
PAIZO PUBLISHING PATHFINDER: NPC CODEX PZO 1124................................$39.99
                                                                                      PZO 9427................................$10.99
PATHFINDER TALES: QUEEN OF THORNS           PZO 8511..................................$9.99



And another glut of Wizkids, including Batman Heroclix, an expansion for Star Trek Fleet Captains (Romulans), and Assassin's Creed Clix, because everyone and their brother demanded them.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

(RPG) The 2012 Ennies

As I worked on this months Apathy of New Releases, in between reading other's Historicon blogs, I started to cover the Ennies. The Ennies were originally a d20 awards program from the minds at www.enworld.org. Eleven years is a long time, but if my skewed memory can start working, many were complaining about the unfair voting procedures of the Origins Awards and disregard of small press d20 products and these awards were their solution.

Fast forward those eleven years and d20 is something we speak of when these new whippsnapper gamers whip out the latest and greatest book. The Ennies, to my untrained eye, have become the Origins Awards of Gencon, specializing in RPGs. It's been nearly a decade since I cared about the Origins Awards, and at least six since I've voted, but the criteria for consideration and all the other things people moaned and complained about have become the status quo for the Ennies.

So, when I got the link to vote, I said "What the hey," and did my civic minded gamer duty.

To be honest, I have no idea what half the shit on the ballot was. My Apathy column is what I use to keep semi-up-to-date with new RPG product, I haven't even heard of half the companies, much less half the products offered.

Best Adventure: Nothing. Haven't seen any of the items

Best Supplement: Cthulhu by Gaslight. At least I've seen some pdf pages. Nothing else.

Best Aid/Accessory: Nothing

Best Website: Nothing. I was even on RPG Geek this week and didn't find it worthy of awards.

Best Cover Art: At least this is one where I can review all of the artwork online. Pathfinder Beginner's Box Set for the win, followed by Cthulhu by Gaslight. If those were the best five pieces of cover art, either the judges are drunk or the industry as a whole is about to collapse.
Best Writing: Nothing, although The Investigator's Guide to Occult London (Pelgrane Press) is the first item on the list i'd like to do more research on.

Best Blog: Nothing. All are flashier than mine, with more followers and better updates, but a number of their recent articles I've read from other sources... ten years ago. Gnome Stew gets a nod (but not a vote) by default.

Best Cartography: What? Nothing.

Best eBook: Not my thing, sorry

Best Free Book: I could do some research here, but I'll admit to preference to the Pathfinder "We be Goblins!" Fantastic stuff.
Best Game: I have seen Savage World Deluxe, very nice

Best Miniatures Product: It's kind of sad... The Pathfinder product is superior hands down, but there is nothing on the list I would vote for.
Best Monster/Adversary: What? And now this is turning into the Kid's Choice or MTV Movie Awards? Regardless, Hacklopedia of Beasts.

Best Production Values: Hacklopedia of Beasts

Best RPG Related Product: "Best of the stuff we haven't covered" Nothing

Best Rules: Nothing, although Marvel and Bulldogs! I've heard of with varying reviews.
Best Setting: Nothing , although Cthulhu Britannica: Shadows Over Scotland (Cubicle 7), The Investigator's Guide to Occult London (Pelgrane Press), and Cthulhu Apocalypse: The Apocalypse Machine(Graham Walmsley & Pelgrane Press) all look cool.

Best Podcast: I listen to a few on occasion, haven't heard of any of these.

Definitely not an "educated voter" that we hope is going to the polls this November, but I try to be an honest one.

Monday, July 23, 2012

An Apology from Gaming with the Gnomies

Looks like everyone had a blast at Historicon, and I'm still analyzing all the data before making an informed judgement on the fate of Fredericksburg, et al.

First, a humble request.  If you snagged the Gnome Wars new releases, I'd gratefully appreciate a few pics of them to put on the blog for the world at large.

One thing that was brought to my attention (thanks herzogbrian!) was that the resolution of the pics on my blog posts are horrendous.  Now, I could throw my veteran con correspondent, Mike Lung, under the bus, but I won't.  He was nice enough to send me pics to begin with, and it's the first free product/service ever offered  to my blog.

Two possible issues:
1.  All the pics sent were taken with an iPhone and emailed to me at 150K a person.  A wee bit small, but I'm not paying for his data plan (I guess I could, but that involves ads on the blog and a frenzied fan base...I'm working on that).
2.  Dummy that I am, I used the Blogger iPhone app to upload the pics, and the showed up ever smaller (sub-75k in many cases).  D'oh!

Regardless of what happened, I'm in the process of resizing those pics already posted. Thursday's is done and I'm working on the rest.

Sorry for the time machine back to 1999.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

(Historicon) Saturday Night's Alright For Fightingp

Mike Lung also sent me pics from the Saturday night game. Again, sent without comment, so I'l add my own.

This session was also played on the MBA Demo board, however the castle end was given to the kids and the adults seem to slug it out in the village, for a change.
Sikhs are good for one thing: Fodder

A Highlander volley line I never want to see again.

The Germans and Orangemen are not calling 911 to report a suspicious fire.

Jim "The Gnome Guy" Stanton pulling cards for initiative. The object to the left is the webcam for the wartv.tv broadcasts. Very entertaining.

Sikh Lancers, the famed 'Cincinnati Bengals"

The full scale of the MBA board

A weary Jim Stanton, probably because he couldn't push GMing duties onto me this year.Ah, there's always Fall-in!

The Irish Advance (or retreat, they both look so similar)

The MBA tables are so convenient, I can't imagine not taking advantage of their availability.  That being said,  I'm ready to put together slightly crazier events for Fall-in, and see if anyone else is interested in my side project, The Second Samoan Civil War sans gnomes, in 28mm for Cold Wars 2014.

(Historicon) The Wings of Gnome Wars

Gaming with the Gnomies Historicon correspondent Mike Lung has recovered and sent a healthy batch of pics.  

The batch of pics covered under this post are from the Wings of Gnome Wars game run by Brian Robinette (herzogbrian) at 3pm Saturday.  Per the event description, the planes are 1/48 Corgi Biplanes, with a few gnomes in the cockpit (the one figure from the German Machine Gun Team just screams "use me in coversions!")

Christmas Bells, oh Christmas Bells....

Unsubstantiated rumors are swilling that Mike and his son Scott took 1st and 2nd place honors, although the only confirmation I could get was a bitter runner-up named Jim, and he may have been under the influence of  bath salts.

This seems to work very well.  We had one biplane make an appearance at Fall-in! '11, Cold Wars had naval rules, and herzogbrian's been working on this at Spring Fever and Historicon. Can't wait to break out the submarines and gnome mecha!

Friday, July 20, 2012

(Historicon) This Thursday, Live Gnome Gamers!

Since I'm not attending Historicon this year, how did I spend my Thursday night at home with a tired wife and two cranky kids?

By observing the next generation of Gnome Wars players kill each other at Historicon.

Jim "The Gnome Guy" Stanton has been collaborating with 40k players/bloggers extraordinaire Jawaballs and Fritz40k on their online wargaming station, www.wartv.tv. They've broadcast 40k games using the new 6th edition rules and done a few modeling/painting sessions.

Jim brought the trusty old laptop to Fredericksburg and had the camera aimed at the village end of the board. Limited audio, no close ups of valiant charges, but it was nice to say hi to the guys in real time.

I also discovered the dress code for Thursday night was Hawaii-Five-O.
Way too many Hawaiian shirts. C'mon guys, it's day one of the convention, you have to have done laundry before you left!

With the quick 360-degree glance Jim gave the viewers, the main hall is big, as in a large area Justin Hammer designed bad battle armor in Iron Man 2 big. No complications yet, so fingers crossed for Saturday.

I also noticed the Middle Eastern MBA board was vacant, and THAT should be an international war crime.

WarTV is also available through http://www.ustream.tv/channel/wartv-tv

Thursday, July 19, 2012

(Historicon) Thursday Gnome Action!

Gaming with the Gnomies intrepid correspondent, sculptor, modeler, and all around nice guy Mike Lung is on the ground at Historicon in Fredericksburg, Virginia, and was nice enough to send a few shots of the Thursday afternoon Gnome Wars game.  Mike sent them without comment, so I'll add my own.

This year's game is again being played on the Miniature Building Authority "Castle" table, and boy is it a beaut!

The thatched roof buildings are new, but I don't believe the fields are MBA.  Still looks nice.

The Highlander officer is already down?  Who's running these guys?
Set-up from the village.  Two separate battles are being fought, with the river as the dividing line.

Herzogbrian's Chocolat Suisse deploy.  The tank in front of them seems intriguing.

Mike Lung's custom Irish Wild Geese Riders

The Allied forces head towards the German-filled castle

Some close-ups of the Chocolat Suisse

A motley assortment.  Multiple Irish Cav units (wolfhound and geese), Irish infantry, American Cav, a tank, an unknown walker, three Aussie scouts, and a formation of Holy Gnomans.

Love the Irish artillery. The female is converted from the Confederate (Southern) Medic.

More to come!

The Michael Lung Gallery #13

With Mike being nice enough to send pics of the con for all to see,  met's take a moment to admire his Teddy Bear Zulus from Eureka.  The simple fact that he has enough of these to justify a Zulu/Boer game has me pleasantly frightened.

Historicon 2012 Coverage

As everyone knows, I won't be making the trek down to Historicon this year.  However, I am proud to announce that our crazed gnomie Mike Lung has offered to send a few pics electronically to the ViscountEric compound at the end of each day.  The blog has its own con correspondent!

Preliminary reports from those who arrived early state that the convention center is beautiful, the nearby Wegman's a godsend, however some are complaining about the detached hotels.  I'm hoping nobody is going to try hike on over to the con site with the horrendous weather.   Don't want any casualties off the gaming table.

And as I got better info, it does seem as if Mike's Znombies are the ones available at Brigade, and Herzogbrian gets credit for Miladies of the Joust.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New Gnomes for Historicon 2012

The formal Brigade Games Historicon news post finally came up on TMP, and amongst the plethora of items guaranteed to make you rob a bank or two before driving down to Virginia, is the Gnow Wars releases:

Russians, Orangemen, GNZombies, Artillery, Miladies for the Joust
No pics, no descriptions, so let's guess for the two days before people can snag them up.
*Russians: The current figure is the sentry, so here's hoping the standard infantry and officer are available.

*Orangeman: The latest releases weren't available at Cold Wars. This includes Drummer, Standard Bearer, and Chaplain (medic)

*GNzombies!: Mike Lung's creations have arrived! I'm still holding pics until I got confirmation as to what figs are out.

*Artillery: I'm hoping this refers to cannnons, mortars, etc, plus figs for both American factions and the Swiss.

*Miladies of the Joust: I do want full confirmation on these, as there are two potential sources. My daughter might get her "official" princess. 

Of course, that's dependent on if there are any left to order after the con.

If you're at Historicon, let me know, and as they say online Send pixplsthx!

Brigade Steampunk Releases for Historicon

Oh, it's almost Christmas time for wargamers.  That's right, Historicon is scant days away and the vendors are just starting to tease their new wares.  Since I'm not going this year I will try to keep abreast of things, and catch up on some models by Mike Lung while everyone else is chucking dice.

Brigade Games has a new line of Victorian Sci-Fi minis available.  So new, in fact, that Lon has yet to name them!

 British Empire Troopers with Breathing Apparatus (5)  $16.50

There is also a character pack with more of a steampunk vibe to them.  $24.00 for the 5 figs 
 I have pouches and goggles!
 Angry Scotsman + Mechanical Claw = Awesome!
 Sgt Pepper with a Ray Gun?
 Size Doesn't Matter, Unless it's the Scope We're Talking About
When the Butterfly King Captures Our Heroes, He Will Be Our Only Hope.

There is a separate officer for the British Troopers that  is available for $4.50, as well.

www.brigadegames.com for more info.

Monday, July 16, 2012

(Mordheim) Warlord Selling Highlander Singles

As I was the Designated Driver for our little group this weekend, I found a quiet corner, a complimentary non-alcoholic beverage, and perused those deep thoughts only a sober man at a wine festival can have.

Apparently, Warlord Games had decided to sell some figures from its Bolt Action WW2 line as singles. In a follow-up, they announced individual sale of their Scottish Highlanders from their Pike and Shotte line.

Now, as it should be, it's still cheaper to buy the figs as part of a set, be it a large or small box. But there are enough unique poses that the first thing that came to mind was a Highlander warband for Mordheim.

Sure, the 25 vs 30mm makes them tall hobbits in kilts, but the range covers all the basic weapons (swords, pistols, bows, etc) and the poses are varied and memorable. Worst case, you buy just the figures you want at $2.75 apiece, best case you buy a Highlander boxed set with 18 figs for $40 and pick up a few extras and you'll have enough for TWO warbands!

Now to make the rules for "taunting" Scottsmen...