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Trollin’ all through Winter – Warmachine Wednesday

The first Northkin models should be out today! My pre-order should be on the way, so I’ll have some Bears soon, and maybe I’ll even get them built and painted at some point…

With us going on hiatus soon, I thought I would round out my thoughts for what I’ll be up to in the coming months around Warmachine. Get some thoughts out now while I can, right?


With the Nerd Baby on the way, I’m at least fooling myself into thinking maybe I’ll take some time during naps to do some painting. I usually have a “where do I get started?” problem with painting, but I even think I have that figured out: with the new Company of Iron game out, and using Warmachine figures, well… that’s what to paint! Get some companies of iron going!

What’s sad is that a lot of what I already have painted doesn’t quite match up with the game, and the new Northkin stuff I have ordered doesn’t work either. So I’ll be starting fresh with something to do this way!

The hope is that we’ll be all setup to run a bunch of Company of Iron at Platypus Con 2018, so I figure I can do my part by having a few companies together and painted for folks to use and for me to play.

Watch for me to be posting pictures of my painting on our Instagram page!


I don’t know if I’ll be getting any games in in the coming months, but even still, part of the joy of the game for me is in list building and army building, is in the “dojo” of the game that I can be doing even when away from the table.

Since the new edition came out, I’ve tried out just about ever warlock in Trolls at this point. However, my attention was focused on only a part of the whole: the 2 Grissels, the 3 Doomshapers, my beloved Horgle, and some of the other single-version warlocks. I’ve ended up focusing a lot on the Warbeasts (like many Troll players), and have slowly built up a collection that includes other things.

So, I’ve set my goal for the coming months at least to focus more on some of the warlocks I haven’t been paying as much attention to: the 3 Madraks, the 2 Grims, the 2 Borkas, and then some of the single version warlocks, most notably the brand new one, Kolgrima, the winter witch!

I’ve actually realized, with 8 warlocks and 4 themes, I have thoughts to start by trying each of them in a specific one… and it happens to balance out at 2 for each theme. So I’m thinking:

Power of Dhunia (warbeasts):

  • Kolgrima
  • Grim1

Band of Heroes (melee troops):

  • Madrak1
  • Borka1

Kriel Company (ranged troops):

  • Grim2
  • Madrak3

Storm of the North (Northkin, combined arms):

  • Borka2
  • Madrak2

There’s certainly some ways that I could shift this around and try other options for them all, but this is where I’m thinking of getting started with them. I erased all of my old army lists, so this is all fresh start now. Also, the main thing I would like to try with all of them is more Northkin stuff, and they don’t all need to bring Bears along, right?


I’m a little sad with the things I have put time into painting, like my Ragnor:

Or that Chad painted for me, in Gunnbjorn:

So I suppose my personal challenge is to find a way to use these warlocks, too, and get ready for some games closer to fully painted! That’s a thing people do, right?

 


A bunch of new rules, new models, and a new game, all amount to there being plenty for me to be happy about with my hobby, even if I don’t get time to play!

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Warmachine Wednesday – Finally, Trolls Updates!

It’s finally happened! The playtesting happened in July (as I discussed on the Trollbloods Scrum podcast), the 4-6 weeks to wait for changes to existing models… took slightly longer than 4-6 weeks. Though they did talk to us and apologize about the delays, they did not entirely explain them – but to be fair, there are a lot of moving parts. When a change comes out, they are updating the free database of rules cards online, the paid War Room app (which includes army list building functionality that all has to work), release a patch notes, and that’s all after internal playtesting and editing… oh, and doing other things for the rest of the game, as well.

I think that now that the changes are live, all is forgiven, and maybe the online community can stop wishing this day would come… it’s gotten pretty toxic as time has passed.

Also, this hopefully means that the many people who seemed to be slowly dropping out of the faction – or the game as a whole – because of where Trolls seemed to be ending up will return!


For me, I’d been having fun and doing alright before this, but quality of life improvements are always welcome – especially as others around me have been getting those. And with my second army still not exciting me, the fun has to come from Trolls, so making sure those stay fresh and fun is important.

No, what matters more for me is that once we knew the changes were coming – and, through the open playtesting, knew roughly what they would be (the final product was very close to the last that we saw in playtest) – I lost a lot of interest in playing the “live” rules. I wanted the changes, like so many of my compatriots, and didn’t want to play the clunky old versions of things.

Really, it’s just nice to finally be here. Thank you, Privateer Press. I think this is what the Trollbloods community needed to not just be growing in salt and bitterness. It’s what was needed because Trolls haven’t been winning tournaments. It’s what’s needed because it fulfills the promises of the new edition, and the open playtesting in the Community Integrated Development.

It’s a good day to play Trolls!

Tournament Report – Warmachine Wednesday

As I mentioned last week, we had a Warmachine tournament last Saturday to try out some new options and just throw down some games. We went pretty light on some rules you might otherwise see in a tournament, so we had some proxy models out… oh, and we could bring a list from each of two different armies. I figured that was what almost everyone was planning to do.

And I was wrong.

Turned out, I was the only one who took advantage of this, and I put a bunch of work in building and repairing models to do so. I finally got my Convergence back on the table, with the new theme allowing the use of their infantry again (which is great because I have roughly one of everything in the faction, which was just not cutting it in the other theme; also: Clockwork Angels). In thinking about matchups, I figured everyone else would have two armies, and was guessing at what they would be bringing, and I liked my odds with Convergence against everything.

We also went pretty loosey-goosey with the matchup process, so first round I ended up with my light guns list into a heavy armor list. Very asymmetrical game, which was fascinating.

He didn’t have the volume of attacks to clear me out, and I didn’t have the firepower to take him down. He identified before me that it was going to come down to assassination, but thankfully I was standing in a safe enough spot that I lived… and then he did not.

Bomber’s gonna bomb.

I should say we also had an odd number, and I had mentioned I would be probably unable to play the last round, because we were planning on Blade Runner 2049, and I’d had those plans first. So I knew I’d be getting a game into round 2, then found out who I would be up against and knew what he played and I’m like, alright, perfect, so his other list is probably… oh wait, what? He only brought elves? Retribution and Retribution? Nah, it’s fine. Time to drop the Angels in!

Here’s where things got really loosey-goosey. We didn’t show army lists before selecting, just went for it. So I did not know what I was getting into – beyond just having expected something wildly different. So basically, we got two of the wackier assassination casters in the game versus each other.

But we were on the sweet new dockside board my opponent built!

I snagged this picture somewhere into his first turn. We have two very fast lists, two casters that want to get in each other’s face, moving over whatever is in the way, and get the kill. After he moved up, I got the first shot at it… and failed. So then he moved on up and stood basically right in front of me threatening it, and also blocking a lot of my abilities. So, I ran laterally across the board max speed. He pursued. And, with minutes left on my clock, I tried something wacky… no luck.

Like half an hour later, I realized that if I had moved over, killed the couple of models closest to the flag (so kill the metal models behind my guy with shields there, closest to the orange marker), then by the rules of the scenario I would have actually won. But in the 3 minutes I had at the start of my turn, the options – and the scoring rules that made it work, like the fact that his warcaster couldn’t stop me from scoring, and that I only needed 5 and not 6 points to win – did not come to me.

This game was so wacky, because his warcaster’s rules almost completely negated my gameplan, and I wasn’t able to roll crazy hot dice to try to salvage things. I burned up a ton of my clock thinking through my options. Still, I found out that if I had just continued leveraging my more likely win condition – scenario play – I could have had the game in hand.

I love getting to the end of games I’ve lost, and seeing that there was a way out or a way to turn it around. This means, really, that I made one main mistake. And spent a whole lot of time, playing an army for the first time. It’s a reminder both that the game is more balanced than the results of a single game might lead you to think, and that I’m playing decently and just need to work on my decision-making. I tend not to think in terms of win conditions, going more for the attacks, dice rolling, and fun, but knowing that the win conditions are there is nice.

I did indeed miss out on round 3, and my round 2 opponent lost the final – someone did succeed at killing the caster that I couldn’t get! Someone who I think might have brought two armies helmed by the same warcaster? Again, we didn’t quite do the rules as solidly as they should be done…

I think everyone had fun, though, and there were some great games! Now: waiting for the Trollbloods updates, to give me a ton of new options that I want to play…

The Scrumcast: Ep 18 vs David

Hey that’s me! My guest appearance on the Trollblood Scrum is finally live in podcast form: http://handcannononline.com/blog/2017/10/04/the-scrumcast-ep-18-vs/

What we say is still valid for a couple reasons. One is we were talking about playtest changes that are still not live rules yet (hopefully next week?), so it’s still speculation. And we talk plenty about what to do with these changes in rules and new models, so that’s still relevant!

Crazy to think I recorded this in July… and that it’s now October!


For another word for Warmachine Wednesday (which I haven’t done enough for it to be a thing yet…), we are doing a tournament this coming Saturday. Privateer Press released a whole bunch of new theme lists for playing thematic armies, to the point where now basically every model in the game exists in some theme list. There were also some tweaks on existing models.

This means that our group is not sure what to do for which army to bring, so many new options! So many new ideas!

The fun idea that Chad hit on instead is to bring two different armies to play, and we’ll get a chance to play both lists. So that has me dusting off my Convergence, my Clockwork Angels, and coming up with a pairing for my Trollbloods. Actually, with the Troll changes not yet live rules, picking something to play is difficult, so that’s the hard end of the spectrum!

I have a bunch of repair to do on models which haven’t hit the table in a while, and a bit of construction on some I haven’t gotten to use yet (now seems like the time!), but I’m looking forward to having some fun on Saturday! I should hopefully get plenty of pictures posted on our Instagram, so be looking for those!

What to game, what to game?…

I’ve hit a bit of a slump after finishing listening to the two books in the Kingkiller Chronicles. That was filling my evenings and I was doing chores and playing a bit of Magic: Puzzle Quest while listening. The books are phenomenal, and the audio book was a great presentation as well.

However, kind of like the Amazon ads, I hit a “show hole,” or in this case a book hole, and I wasn’t sure what to read or listen to or do next. I had put 80 hours into listening to the Kingkiller Chronicles, with more and more towards the end.

I have a few books out from the library: Jo Walton’s The Just City out in print, and Station Eleven in audio book, but neither seemed quite right (although I have finally started listening to Station Eleven: liking it so far). But really, what I felt like doing was playing a video game.

I was immediately stopped because we have not yet setup the X-Box 360 in a new place at the new house. This limited my choices considerably, although it especially brought me up short as I was starting to think about replaying something like Final Fantasy XIII-2 (which is not yet backwards compatible) or Diablo III (which had a fancy X-Box One version come out so won’t be backwards compatible).

Given our recent discussion of replaying versus new material, I turned next to thinking about new games. There’s not really one I’m looking to play that we already owned, but now that we don’t have a data cap, the idea of buying a digital game and downloading it doesn’t seem like a terrible idea. Final Fantasy XV isn’t as cheap as I’d like it to be (might be an okay $20 game). I’ve heard such rave reviews of Witcher III that I strongly considered that one, but with the digital game I can’t tell if it’s equivalent to the “Game of the Year” edition which would have lots of the content as well. I did check for this at the store in town as well, but no luck… Hmmm, maybe an Amazon purchase…

My search for a new game to play leaving me unsatisfied, I turned to games I haven’t completed yet. I got started with Dishonored 2 and was liking it alright, but I also felt like I wanted to play in a different way than vaguely stealthy and want to start over – I’m giving myself a bit more time before doing that! On the other hand, I was well into Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, but it’s been long enough since then that diving back into the end feels daunting. Same with Kingdom Hearts 2 HD.

There was playing a classic, as well. I had started playing Final Fantasy VII on the PSP, but when it ran out of power it lost my progress during what is apparently a super long section without a save point – working your way up Shinra Tower! I could play it or VIII easily enough on the PSP or the PS3, but those didn’t feel right.

I also got to thinking about Baldur’s Gate 2 Enhanced Edition, which I had picked up on the computer but haven’t played because I haven’t really played anything on the computer in some time. I had this one recommended to me on Facebook recently by Jeremy, as well, so I may turn to it next…

But the game I ended up picking back up, however, is Mass Effect: Andromeda. The news that this game will probably not have DLC or sequels took some wind out of my sails in terms of finishing the game. However, it also felt like a game where I’ve played recently enough that jumping back in wasn’t a problem, I’m far enough that I feel the completionist desire to finish it, and knowing that I’ll probably just finish it and be good with it, I’ve decided to mainly just focus on the main story and companion quests. Hopefully I knock this one out soon!

Of course then, I might just be back into another bout of wondering what to play…