Monday, 30 June 2014

Rampage Review

 I call this post a review, but it's more of a froth. On Sunday, in addition to getting a game of Bolt Action in, I was able to play a game of Rampage that one of the guys was kind enough to bring down. There is almost always at least one board game going on at Worhamma, so if you've not been and just want to see what's going on, it's worth coming and having a go because there will be something you can get involved with.

 So what is Rampage? It's a board game for up to 4 people where you take the role of monsters and destroy/ devour a city. That's right, there stereotypical young boys game of destroying cities was made into an actual board. Awesome, right? Well, it get's better. The game is really physical, in order to move your monster, for example, you flick your playing piece. Your monster can do a breath attack and to do that you literally blow onto the board. You can even throw nearby trucks by flicking them aswell! The aim of the game is to destroy buildings and eat the people inside, if a person falls onto you area and is not on the building or sidewalk you eat it and put it in your pile.

 As you might imagine this can cause some carnage, wooden people go flying across the room as you physically break down a city! There are penalties for sending things across the room, so people tend to be less ridiculous... unless you are me and are just in it for the mindless destruction.

 The game gets better with masses of special cards to enhance your monster. Everyone gets one character card, one power and one special power. For example, you could end up being a punk monster who gets extra benefits from eating businessmen and old men.

 As you can probably tell, I had a great time. I lost, but had so much fun doing it. I think it takes you to release your inner-child, but who doesn't want to be a bit silly every now and then.

The game retails at £45, but you can get a copy at Worhamma for the discounted price of £40.50. When I last spoke to them, they even had a limited edition copy left so you get stickers for the people inside. Get in contact with them @Worhamma on twitter or follow this link for them on facebook.

 I cannot recommend the game enough, it was so much fun!

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Variety and WAAC

 Yesterday I went to the local club Worhamma with the intention of doing something a little different. As you might be able to tell, I have been playing Malifaux near exclusively for about a year so a bit of variety helps to keep things fresh and exciting. Fortunately, the scene at Worhamma is really good and people seem to be up for trying new things. There were games of X-Wing, 40k and various board games going on. I opted for some Bolt Action.

 I have never been a World War II fanatic. It's an interesting period of history, but I almost feel like people obsess over it. I got into for two reasons. Firstly, there was a decent community building up and I wanted to break the GW stranglehold. Secondly, I am obsessed with Soviets. I know that seems counter to what I just said about not being a fanatic, but I feel that Russia is like another world. I am more interested in the revolution than true 'Soviets', but it's good enough for me!

 There hasn't been masses of activity in the system for a little bit, but when I suggested it as a bit of a change a few people have had their interests piqued. It's a good side game and I think that's how we are beginning to look at it. The rules aren't complicated. You hit, with modifiers, and wound just like GW, but it has a really good mechanic for pinning which makes it a really interesting and involving game.

This Sunday I played Scott, it was his first game using the rules but seem to find it easy to get stuck in. I probably got some rules wrong but we both had a great time. Some key moments were some Birtish commandos charging into my people's militia and butcher them to a man, only to be counter charge by a SMG squad and being butchered in return. A British mortar was able to zero in it's first shot and obliterate a sniper position, but the second was able to withstand repeated sniper and mortar barrage.

 I am glad I had so much fun playing the game because it has given me more incentive to paint the army for my paintathon, 24 hours of painting to raise money for MacMillan Cancer support and WAAC. I received my first sponsor yesterday, I am very grateful to Adam Sellers. Please join him and help a worthy cause.

You can find my 'Just Giving' page here

Thanks everyone for reading.

Malifaux Mat, showing off

This weekend I finished another Malifaux Mat. For those who haven't seen them before, they are made out of wall paper and split into two 3' by 18" sections. If you look back through my previous blog posts you can see how I made them. This latest mat also makes use of the textured paint I make aswell.

With this mat I tried to keep the important lines. What I mean by that is that the paths (on either their edges or the centre line) show the deployment zones for flank and corner, the turf war and recon areas, and the centre lines of the board, diagonal or orthogonal. The terrain fits in the gaps pretty well, apart from the two larger pieces, but I don't think they look out of place.

I have now, however, run out of the roll of wallpaper I was using. However, for £4 I am pretty chuffed at getting 4 mats. With the swamp board I worked on with Nate, which has a wooden back instead, I have 5 Malifaux boards.

 So that's me for today, just a quick update on how the terrain is coming. I am going to have to go buy another roll of wallpaper, but it's hardly a major financial investment.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Not a Bad Thing: Terrain Progress

Not a Bad Thing is running on the 13th September at Worhamma, Sunderland. You can find more details for the event on its facebook page or on the Wyrd Forum page. We had a great time at our last event, 'The Good, The Bad and The Fated', it was a great crowd and had a great atmosphere, make sure you don't miss out on this one!

 For this event, the numbers have been upped to 32 and I have stepped up to make some boards to play on. Today's blog post is just reporting some progress on the boards.

First up I have my Wild West mining board. All of the laser cut terrain is from TT Combat and is kindly being let by my girlfriend. The rocky out crops have been cut from pink foam kindly gifted to me by David Golden which has been cut by Nate Zettle's hot wire cutter (damn, I am a cheap skate) and then hacked at with a knife.

I am pretty chuffed with this board layout and proportions of terrain so it is just a case of painting it. Jen will be painting her MDF terrain so it is just a case of getting the colours right on the mat and rocks.

The second board I have been working on for the tournament is the dining hall board. I have added some taller stage sections since people have last seen it and on recommendations I have also added some private booths.  I still think that it's not enough, however.

I do have some more tables, though, so I can make another table forest easily. The main problem I think is terrain that will block LoS. I intend to make some curtains or vanity screens to go around some of the table sections. I think with those additions it should be fine, but please let me know what you think.

Finally I thought I'd throw up some pictures of terrain I did for Vince Usher as a favour. I don't know if it will feature at the tournament, but its what I gone and done so y'all can look at it all the same.

Well that's everything from me, apart from one more picture I am going to squeeze in. Ta ta for now.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

WAAC Paintathon update

A while back I made plans to take part in @docbungle's charity rally 'Wargamers All Against Cancer', or WAAC, which is raising money for MacMillan. My plan is to do a 24 hour 'Paintathon' where I have to paint 100 models.

 Initially I had intended to try and get a few people involved in my plan and get some space in a local hall. However, I have not received any interest from people locally wanting to get involved and when I have tried to hire the local hall for the bank holiday weekend in August I found that it was already booked.

 I am not giving up, though. I will simply be challenging my body to resist sleep with the easy temptation of my own bed. I will do the Paintathon at my own house. This will also allow me to be accessible via skype for almost the whole time so people can check that I am still awake and hurl insults or whatever they fancy.

Of course, anyone who is still interested in getting involved is more than welcome. If you are local, I live near Durham, you are welcome to come to my house to get involved, just beware, obviously, I only have so much room! Also if you live far away and still want to help money for a worthwhile cause then we now have the ability to skype! Bonus.

Of course, the most important way to get involved is to donate money. Cancer effects everyone close to it, not just through health issues but also emotional and fiscal strain. A bit of support at such a difficult time means everything. This is why MacMillan deserves our help, so please pitch in in any way you can.

You can find the link to my just giving page here

Thanks for reading. If you want to get in contact with me about this my email is You can find me on twitter @proximocoal and just using my name should find me on facebook. I hope to hear from you soon.

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Iron Quill - Moth

This is my Iron Quill, a monthly Malifaux fan fiction competition, entry so far. I'd like to preface this by saying the story is a little grim. If it's too grim let me know. In fact, I'd like all the feedback I can get. Thanks for reading.


 “You’re at the doorway to a brave new world, on the precipice of something truly mesmerising. Don’t fight it.”

 Lauren squirmed against her bindings. She did not know what she would do if she had actually managed to break free, but all she could think of was escape. The coarse heavy rope chaffed against her naked flesh. Her jaw ached from biting down on the foetid rags binding her mouth open and silent. Bloodshot and teary eyes darted around the room desperately searching for something she could use, some way to get out.

The room was dark. Very dark. Underground most likely. There were no windows. The only light was blocked by her. She tried not to think about her. Some way out, focus on some way out. Then there was that noise, like someone leafing through sheets of paper but all around her. What was that. Focus on a way out. There was nothing. She could see nothing. She broke down into tears. The foul lady approached her, one claw-like hand rubbed its calloused knuckles over Lauren’s cheek. The young girl wretched when she realised that it felt like leather.

 “We know why you cry, little caterpillar. We have watched you. We know the pain that gnaws at you.” The crone had a hiss to her voice, but it was soft. She was clearly trying to be comforting. Lauren swallowed the vomit lest she choke. “We know your pain, little caterpillar. Yes, We know.”


The girl grabbed her meagre possessions as she fled the howling of the people on the train. They had attacked her. Ripped her clothes from her. Beaten her. They were going to kill her. She had barely escaped with her life, leaping off the train into the dirt of this strange new world. She had come through the breach for a new life, a new chance, exciting new discoveries. Now, before she had even stepped onto Malifaux station, she had been chewed up and spat out under the ominous glare of the alien night sky.  She had stumbled out and found a small pond shadowed by a gnarled black tree. She drank rapidly, not wanting to know the taste, but paused when she finally willed herself to open her eyes. There was just enough moon light for her to look at her reflection in the pool of water. The ripples broke the image but as she put her hand to her face she could how she had become hideous. Her immaculate features had contorted, as if the breach had made them nothing more than swirling liquid and spat them back out again. Her soft seductive skin had been stretched as all her bones had reshaped becoming sinewy and hairy like a pig. Her once perfect smile broken by elongated teeth that had broken through her lips. Once she had been able to seduce any man, now they believed her to be some daemonic fiend. Her shrill howl broke the stillness of night as she smashed her gnarly fists into her own reflection. Her tears spilt down her face to be drunk by Malifaux’s thirsty earth.

Lauren had never known pain like this. Her whole body shook as the blade sliced slowly into the flesh of her back. She howled impotently into the rag in her mouth has layers of skin were peeled away. All the while the woman told her story.

“We all change eventually dear. We saw you look into the mirror and see those tell-tale signs of age”

Lauren could not tell, but she thought the creature was smiling as it looked into her face and tapped her nose with one claw. She almost forgot the pain when she stared into her eyes, bottomless pits of blackness and pain. A strange purity was in there, like a consciousness buried under basic necessity. They didn’t look human. The ‘woman’ sighed as she resumed her work, pinning the skin to the blood-stained work bench.

“What is a courtesan without her looks, little caterpillar? How would your clientele changed as your beauty twisted into something else? As you got uglier so would they, little dove.”

 “You’re not going to stick it in that are you?” the smaller man spat as he stared down at the creature pinned down in the alley way.

 “It’s got all the right bits, ‘an it? Besides I’m not going to look at its face” The larger man landed another back handed strike on the female and then stuffed a hessian sack over her head. The woman sobbed as Malifaux defiled her once again.

 When the men had finished with her they chucked her into a nearby cellar. Killing her was unnecessary, Malifaux would do that job soon enough. The woman coughed up blood as she came to, moaning and writhing in pain and self-hatred. When would death finally release her from pain? It had already made her a monster, what else did it want?

 When she had gathered enough energy to drag herself from the floor she found that she was not alone. Millions of moths surrounded her, the ones that she had disturbed fluttered around her like a living whirlwind. Eventually their frenzy settled and one landed on her hand. She stared at it for a long time. It was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen. The more she looked at the creature the more she saw how it was dissimilar from the earth-side creature. Its wings were the colour of blood, the dark blood the oozed from a fatal wound. Its total size, including wingspan was twice as large as her malformed hands. It did not have antenna, but instead eyes. Deep black eyes. After what may have been an age the moth fluttered away, graceful as it moved between air-currents, and finally landed on a small podium. As her eyes followed the moth they landed on the book.
It beckoned her.

She finally dragged herself over. She clutched the hide-bound pages to her bosom. It gave her a strength she had not known for a long time. She did not leave that cellar for weeks. Consumed.


 “Do you see now? Do you see what a gift I have given you? No longer a little caterpillar, no, now my graceful beautiful moth. We have changed you. We have made it so you will always be beautiful. You have done a great thing today, you have helped take one more step towards eternal beauty. One day I will be as wonderful as you, my pretty little moth.”


“Fascinating.” Doctor McMorning batted the odd moth away with a back of his hand as he stared down at the corpse in the basement. “Do you know how long it’s been here?”

The guardsman wiped his mouth as he gradually lifted his head from the pool of vomit. “Sorry about that. Sir.”

“Really, is the guild made of nothing but ignorant farmers these days?” It didn’t sound the sort of question he was meant to answer but McMorning had leant into his face and his eyes were staring directly into his. The fire in his eyes was almost more than his already unsettled stomach could bare.

“No, Sir?”


“Well what, Sir?”

“How long has the body been here!”

“Apparently the woman was a young girl called Lauren, worked at a nearby… umm… house of companionship. Been missing about 2 weeks.”

“What a waste.”

“Yes, Sir. Poor girl. She seemed sweet… not that I knew her or nothing, Sir”

“What?” McMorning turned round, seemingly bamboozled by the guardsman’s awkwardness, “Oh yes, shame about the girl, whatever, but if you look carefully” McMorning prodded the body with his pencil and then put it into his mouth. The Guardsman wretched but was glad when he didn’t seem to have any more content in his stomach to lose, “there is absolutely no decomposition. Despite all of these annoying creatures flapping about us there is even not any creatures making her into a feast. Look at this aswell,” McMorning continue unabated as the guardsman proved himself wrong and buried the evidence in an increasingly large pile of vomit, “these wings have not simply been grafted on, they are actually made of the woman herself. Remarkable.” McMorning looked around the room and found a small music box on the side. He flicked the lid open and wagged his finger slightly faster than the tiny tune that rang out, as if attempting to make it get to its point, before he noticed the picture on the inside of the lid.

“I believe I have discovered the culprit, guardsman farmer-pants. It appears to be Maggie Strudel, someone quite famous in my field who had travelled to Malifaux to shadow my work. She never made it, had a bit of an ‘accident’ on the way, apparently turned into some vicious creature or something. Such a shame." McMorning trailed off and continued prodding the corpse, muttering things like 'so much potential' and tutting as he went. Eventually the guardsman plucked up the courage to intervene.


"What? Oh, you're still here. Looks like I will need this body and all of the evidence taken back to my lab on the double, also it goes without saying that Maggie needs to be found.”

“I’d appreciate it, Sir, if I did not have to be the one to take the body, Sir, it just seems to turn me the wrong way.” The guardsman held his hat in his hand as he pleaded, slowly rotating it.

“What? Oh yes, yes, yes. Well volunteered! Grab yourself a couple of stout fellows and head into the quarantine zone then, that’s the best place to find her." McMorning shook his head as he looked down at the growing damp patch in the guardsman’s britches. Why did people think the dead were so horrible when it was the living that made all of the nauseating fluids?

Monday, 16 June 2014

Finished Piggies!

After being confronted with vast walls of text for the last couple of days, I figured it would be reasonable to have a text 'light' post today. A few people have been asking on twitter for pictures of my follically favoured farmyard figure, well here goes nothing.

Above you can see my proxy for old major. The moustache was made using greenstuff, the monocle made from a bent paper clip and the hat was stolen from some WWII Bolt Action Russians from Warlord games.

Next up I have my piggapult. I am sure you have seen this multiple times in multiple blog posts so I shan't explain how it was made.

Finally I have the model I am most proud of, Lady, the female war pig. Many people don't seem to have seen the old war pig model so I am going to take this opportunity to compare the new and the old model:

Hopefully people now will be able to see that I have rounded out Lady's plump behind, given her much more of a stomach (and udders of course!) and also given her much more chin. I personally think it has worked out well, I am much happier with the model now.

So there we have it! As I said, text light today but who doesn't like seeing pictures of pigs? Don't worry, now they are finished the pig obsession will most likely decline a bit... most likely.

Sunday, 15 June 2014


I have been attending quite a few tournaments recently. Many of these events have been very good and I have really enjoyed them. There are a few things that have cropped up repeatedly from events that I'd just like to discuss. They are: Pre-pay, terrain and prizes.

 Firstly, I think tournaments should always be pre-paid. Organizing gamers, and I include myself in this category, is like herding cats. If you push them most will make the general motion of doing what you want, but generally will just do what they feel like. However, if you place a financial incentive everyone becomes very interested!

 In all seriousness, there are many reasons people don't come if you don't make it pre-paid. Often there can be a sense of trepidation, not only for what your mystery partner on the other side of the table will be like, but also what those people will think of you. Sometimes you feel a little under the weather. Whatever, literally hundreds of reasons, and people just need that little bit of encouragement. If you get people to pre-pay then drop outs will tend to only happen if there is a serious reason.

 The worst attended tournaments I have been to have all been pay at the door. Proof in the pudding.

Next is terrain. This is always a point of contention for many people. I am terrible for the excuse, 'well if the terrain wasn't like this...' which I should really slap myself for, but it does make the big difference for a great looking and enjoyable game and not. I think the main issue is that Malifaux players tend to be enthusiastic hobbyists and want to play on terrain that looks right (again, I am guilty)... often to the cost of being more practical. It's difficult to manage the balance and I don't have a right answer unfortunately, but TO's should place a high priority on the terrain. As a sub-note, I am going to suggest not using special terrain rules. One of my games at 'Into the Breach' used the rules for the hanging tree which worked surprisingly well, but on other tables the rules were ignored. As a rule, less complications are best so that you can get on with your game within the limited time.

Last on the list of topics is prizes. I really dislike prizes. This may sound a little grumpy, but if people want to enjoy less 'Win at all cost' gaming, which I think the Malifaux scene is agreement is bad, then you shouldn't make there a physical incentive for doing well. The prizes for Malifaux tend to be pretty good. I don't understand! There are things, however, I do like; or at least prefer. Firstly little tokens that everyone can take away with them I think are really nice. It's like a souvenir for the day and I, sadly, treasure my collection. I also don't mind so much having raffles rather than actual prizes, because then it is not all about winning. Even if you just win more raffle tickets for placing that is a better option than straight placing for prizes. I still don't feel like the imposition should be on Tournament Organizers to harass people for stuff to go in their prize pool. I would attend tournaments regardless and I hope that everyone else is the same.

Well that's my two cents and I hope it was enjoyable/useful. Maybe by the time all of this has gone out I will have more material to bury you in. Enjoy death by text.

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Gremlins is Awesome: Into The Breach Lessons

 As promised, another post today about things I gone and learned-ed at my latest tournament. This broadly breaks down into two main areas. Activation ordering and secondly Old Major and Som'er's bromance (I know, for one model this is a bit of a saga).

 First off, and the hardest lessons for me from 'Into The Breach' is activation order. Recently, for whatever reason, I have decided to start treating some planned actions for models as 'safe' and thus delay them while I do other things. This is stupid. Yes, later on your opponent might have less cards and make the move slightly easier, but there are so many tricks and moves in Malifaux that you cannot guarantee that something will happen. If you can do it and it is important bloody well do it! Obviously, there are situations where this doesn't take effect. If you will put yourself in a dangerous position until someone else activates etc. Today, however, I was accepting the danger and deciding there wasn't any. Malifaux's tag line is there for a reason. BAD STUFF HAPPENS.

 As I said in my previous bromance post, Som'er and Old Major have a strange interaction. I think taking him in my generic, non pig, list was a mistake. He is solid, there is no denying that, but in the games we were playing he needed to be able to act by himself and he just couldn't. Soaking up the damage is fine, but there was no real reason for people to attack him. Once someone engaged him he couldn't get away and couldn't kill what was in the way. Without Som'er giving him reactivate, by making the opponent discard their hand (which Som'er couldn't afford to do), he doesn't have 'enough' for this size of game in Recon. However, I do look forward to using him in larger games. Stay tuned.

 Off on a tangent, if anyone was wondering why I am so interested in making the big pig work it is because I have a model of a pig with a tash, monacle and hat. I want to use him.

 So there we go, more thinkin' luck for the Gremlins in the future I hope. Stay tuned for tomorrow's installment!

Into The Breach: Report

On the 14th June I attended 'Into The Breach', the first tournament in a growing Malifaux scene in Waugh Games (in Middlesborough). I learned many things at this event, so I am going to be writing a couple of blog posts on it, so as to try and not ramble about too many subjects. So, taking a one action to focus (I'll get my coat) let's try and talk about the dirt of the day.

I apologize for the lack of pictures, but the game felt tightly squeezed in and I felt like I didn't have the time.

 Waugh games itself has a decent amount of space, based in an industrial unit, and a decent amount of very nice terrain. Some of the tables were, in my honest opinion, a little sparse. There were, however, some very nice tables. I even got a custom scheme marker for the day which I always love. Seriously, after that I felt I was really chuffed (I know I am sad).

 My first game was against Greg Piscosz, our local Malifaux powerhouse who came second in last years masters. A few weeks ago we had both played exactly the same scenario so we had a knowing look on our faces. It was a good thing we hadn't played in our last session!
  It was fixed list. Greg took:

 Mechanical Rider
 2 Waifs
 Freikorps trapper

I had:

 Old Major
 Slop Hauler
 3 Bayou Gremlins

 We both took Frame for Murder (him on Mech. Rider and me on Fran) and I took plant explosives when he took breakthrough. Both announced.

 It was a very cagey game. I made my first mistake letting Greg going first where his trapper topped a bayou gremlin, making it hard for Som'er to summon and thus out-activate Greg. We spent much of the game darting around with out crews, worried about over extending ourselves. Francois then jumped into the middle and took down the Mech. Rider, scoring Greg 3 points. Leviticus then charged Fran making the game even again but at the same time summoning a abomination. In the end he was able to hold off Old Major to make me lose a recon point and get his Necropunk to score his 3vp for breakthrough. The crews having spread out meant I could only bag 2 points from plant explosives. Final score 8-6 to the ginger dark horse of the north.

 Second game I played on the same table, fortunately different deployments, against a beginner called Steve Atkinson who declared it was his 5th game of Malifaux. He took:

Flesh Construct
Canine Remains
Bette Noir

Honestly I can't remember of that exactly right. Sorry.

Mine was the same list as before.

He had Breakthrough (Revealed) and Make them Suffer. I had Plant Evidence (revealed) and Make Them Suffer. When we revealed schemes I tried to explain to him how Plant Evidence in this scenario was basically like Breakthrough but easier, but he said he liked to make his own mistakes but he was happy for the advice. I breathed a sigh of release at this, it meant my ideas behind playing beginners (written up in a previous blog post) applied.

 We had a great game. Nicodem used the corpse markers made by the dog and Mortimer to summon some mindless zombies and then another construct. Som'er summoned loads of Gremlins who were pulled along by old Major and then fanned across the board. My heavy hitters dived into the middle and he did likewise, attempting to close down Som'er. Unfortunately, by summoning lots of minions and then forcing them down my throat played into my hand a little because it meant Som'er could squeal (my own gremlin shot into combat, it's a awesome trick!) and then bag make them suffer repeatedly. My opponent had focussed to much on killing stuff and summoning stuff to try and place his own markers, however, and easily gained dominance of stake a claim early on. Unfortunately, because Mortimer had spent too many AP making corpses, he never really got stuck in which I think was the biggest mistake. Chatty is amazing and if he is cleaving Gremlins he is also making many corpse markers. The game ended with me scoring 8 and my opponent 0.

 I felt a little bad coming out with that result, I didn't want to crush the fun for my foe, but my opponent seemed happy enough. He said he fully expected to lose lots in the tournament, but had enjoyed his game and felt he had learned something. I really hope you meant that Steve. I had a great game and if there was a best sportsman, he would have got it from me.

 After Lunch I played against the tournament organizer Andrew Newton, a lovely and cheerful chap. I am just going to apologize now if I felt a little short with him sometimes (scheme marker scoring was the bit I feel bad about). It was hot and I don't do well in the heat (this is the North for gods sake!) but there is no excuse. I hope you enjoyed our game anyway, I did. We played Reckoning, always a strategy I hate, and the lists were the following:

3*punk zombies
2 Canine remains

I took:

Old Major
Hog Whisperer

 This was the strategy I had been tearing my hair out over, as anyone who has spoken to me recently would know, as the scheme pool was very scheme marker focused. We both took announced Plant Evidence and my opponent took Breakthrough where I had protect territory (again, both announced). Mass reactivating pigs, a very open board and a penchant for Nicodem's summon ability meant that I was able to score some easy reckoning points early on, whilst my opponent really had to focus his crew to take down one of my pigs. However, after the initial gambit things started to crumble. My mistake was not activating Gracie first (very foolish of me) letting him drag her down. After that my master could not kill the undead horde quick enough because of hard to kill. Som'er admirably held back the tide though, preventing Andrew getting too many scheme points whilst I managed to grab a couple by dominating my right hand side. 6-3 to me. A well played game and I must say very well enjoyed.

 My last game of the day was against John Wharton, another major player on the Malifaux scene who has won a few events. Last time I played John he tabled me on turn 3 so I'll be honest and say I wanted revenge. Bad, I know, but I can't help it.

It was Recon again so I returned to my first list. John took the following:

Freikorps librarian and trapper.
Malifaux Child.

It was the standard list I expected from John. I took Assassinate and protect territory (revealed) as did he. Early game I was in control. I deployed second and deployed away from the trapper with Som'er and his mass gremlins. I spent the first turn mass summoning. John castled up in a ruin on one of his quarters and Old Major dragged Francois forward ... for him to decide caution was the better part of valour and defensive stance.

 I find one of the main strengths of the Viks and John's crew is the ability to get the jump on people. The threat range of the Viks is large and you are forced forward by the present of his big guns. However, having activation control by a massive margin (I summoned 3 gremlins previously) meant I had stripped that to some extent. Vik of Ash was forced to charge out of her cover, using Oath keeper, to attack Fran... who promptly squealed away and meant she wasted Oath Keeper. Holding the red joker in my hand, Fran focused and charged, using the focus on the second to take the master to one wound and top himself (she had survivalist). This left Old Major to claim Assassinate before he had a chance to heal (this was at the end of activation). Some poor positioning on my part left Vik of Blood able to kill 2 bayou's using her Oath Keeper. Som'er failed to capitalize on the fact she was in the open. Despite this I still had the corners so I grabbed recon.

 Next turn blood charged and Som'er squealed away. Deciding the main threat to him was now gone, Som'er decided to hold off his activation. John's entire crew through everything at him to no avail... until against all odds a trapper fired from the complete otherside of the table, weaving LoS through walls and models, at him... and I Black Jokered. At that point the game was over. John scored 3vp and the upcoming punishment John had left himself wide open for was gone.  I couldn't hold back his forces anymore.

John won the game 8-6.

I was not the best sport after that, I am afraid to say. Victory was in my clutches and then suddenly, because of fickle fate, it was gone. There were many things I could have done to stop it though and John played well in being able to see his opportunities. I did apologize to John for a grumpy git, but I do again. Sorry.

So overall, I came 4th (I think, there was some confusion). Unsurprisingly the more experienced players from Sunderland and Newcastle did the best, with Greg winning. I hope the local gamers still had a great time because I did and I look forward to seeing them across the table soon. Thanks for Andrew Newton for running the event and getting things organized. It was a blast.

Before I go, I am just going to say please leave me info if this is the sort of thing you like to hear about. I can try and focus on other stuff in future if it would be more useful. Now off to right the next installment!

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Gremlins is Awesome- Complicated Bromance

 Recently you have seen that I have been working on an old major proxy for my Malifaux Gremlin crew. I have been using him repeatedly in games lately with Som'er and I thought I'd have a quick discussion of what I found.

 I have been primarily using him in the reckoning strategy alongside a bunch of other large pigs, on the basis that many 12 wound models are difficult to drag down. By himself he has a few useful abilities for this. Firstly he gives positive attack and damage flips to charge actions made by pigs activating within 4". This is pretty mint. Anything that gives you positive damage is great, stacking with charging as a 1 action and rampage a war pig can do. Next on the card is the 'eye on the young 'uns' which means pigs can declare friendly pigs as targets of a charge action, which is not as useful as it would first appear... they can still charge Som'er! None of this gels well with Som'er specifically, but obviously helps if you are taking a pig crew.

 There are a few things where Som'er and Old Major together really do work to make an effective pig crew. The name of the game is reactivate. Hog Whisperers, as a 1 action, can cause a pig to take 3 wounds and gain reactivate. However, to do this he needs a mask. Som'er can obviously dish out masks as his zero action. Pig feed is also an awesome upgrade for Som'er. If successful all pigs in Line of Sight are pushed 4" toward the target and if they finish in base contact make an attack. Very useful. Finally, Old Major has got Ceaseless advance, so if your opponent has no cards left and you have models left to activate he gets reactivate.Som'er has an ability where if he successfully wins a duel with an enemy leader both players discard their hands, giving Old Major reactivate for no wounds.

 This is where things get tricky, however. One of old major's main abilities is that he can discard a card to make a friendly pig within line of sight push 4" and gain the suit of the card to all duels this turn, which I hope you agree is pretty amazing... if it wasn't for the fact that Som'er can also dish-out a suit. They are competing for rubbish cards to chuck! Also, if you have used Som'er to get rid of the enemies hand to reactivate old major then you can't use this ability.

 So where does this leave this awkward pairing? Yay or Nay? Honestly I am not 100% sold, but I am going to go with Yay. I think part of the problem at the moment is I am only playing with a 41 stone crew with him. I think the pair will work best when I have pigs and gremlins to play with, rather than just a few big pigs. I think though, rather than attempting to force things, you can do certain things when necessary. Discarding your hand to give Old Major reactivate can work when desperate and/or you have a poor hand, but doesn't have to be done all of the time. The same applies with his push. He is, after all, still a 12 wound model with a min 3 damage attack and an ability to make other pigs brutal on the charge, that's pretty decent.

 I am going to a tournament in Middlesborough tomorrow where you have to submit two lists to be used across the 4 games. Old Major is in both lists so he is going to get plenty of table time. Wish me luck! Regardless, I should write a review of how things went in the next couple of days so keep your eyes peeled.

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Nostalgia: Necromuna and Mordheim

The other day I visited a local gaming club for the first time to play a game of Malifaux. I was thoroughly owned, but I intended to gloss over that and discuss a strange statement that came up. One of the guys expressed an interest in Malifaux and said that it made him want to play Necromunda and Mordheim again.

 I have good memories of playing both of those games. The background that accompanied these rules was superb and it was lots of fun getting involved in my first skirmish level game. They were, in my opinion, terrible rules sets though. Shoe-horning the larger scale games mechanics into a smaller setting was lazy and in my opinion ineffective. The campaign systems were terrible and unbalanced. Characters rapidly became very powerful and it was far too effective to spam, for example taking many heroes in Mordheim or mass slings etc. So why on earth would you want to go back to that when there was a much more viable game with an obvious player base sitting right in front of you?

I have no idea why, when they mentioned it, I said if you do run a campaign sign me up.

 I posed the question on twitter and ending up having a long conversation with Dominic Westerland, @dumbluck, about it. The first thing he said is that there isn't anything else that fills that niche. Although initially I thought he may have meant Sci-Fi and Fantasy skirmish rule sets, it seems the real lure of these games came from the campaign setting and character development.

 I really struggle with games where there are rules for models gaining experience and gaining extra skills, it never feels 'right'. For example, my gang leader in Necromunda is a veteran of many fights but does not have access to any of the incredible skills available to a juve after his first fight. He can quickly become surpassed by the average ganger who makes a lucky roll. The very act of killing people does not make you stronger, experience and skills take a long time to learn. However, I can definitely see the attraction. When these models change they begin to build up a character in your head, it is a very powerful tool for making narrative games.

The next thing that came up, from when I tried to list games I thought could act as replacement fantasy and sci-fi skirmish games, is the concept of 'buying into a game'. One of the games I listed, which neither of us knew the name of but somehow we both understood each other, was described by Dominic as having awful models. I wasn't overly convinced by his assessment, but argued that if you don't like them you can simply get models from elsewhere and use them with the rules set. He argued that he prefers buying models designed for a game where possible because you are buying into the whole experience. The background, the style etc. are all represented. It is a very interesting point, one that could be expanded upon elsewhere and most likely should be investigated by miniature companies. I initially said that if the game rules are good I would just proxy, but the more I thought about it I realized that was not true. For example, I have been repeatedly told of the merits of Dreadball but when I didn't like the figures I didn't look any further. It seems that people prefer to buy into a whole game or not at all.

Are the old figures for GW skirmish games that great? Honestly, I don't think so, but they do have loads of character and I think this is where a sense of nostalgia really kicks in. When you look back on those old figures it really takes you back to the good old days of playing games as a kid. No other new rules set or models can do that. I called it gaming apathy on twitter, but that might be a very negative word, but I think that basically a few people have kept there old miniatures and rules and enough people have good memories for it to be an easy game to fall back to. It will take a very good game with great models to break the emotional attachment to these old games and replace them.

This has been quite a long ramble from me and I am sorry if it's not overly coherent but, basically, I think we have yet to have a game with good character progression rules and models nice enough to sever the emotional attachment we have to the old GW skirmish games. At least that's what I think, get in contact if you have any more thoughts. Until then. 

Monday, 9 June 2014

Knowledge is Power

 I often feel guilty about posting WIP on here, it feels like a bit of a cop-out. I thought what I'd do today is briefly discuss a topic that came up on twitter, knowing what you are fighting, whilst posting some pictures of what I have been up to at the same time.

Practice Soviets finished ready for my #WAAC paintathon. Pretty drab and dreary, but they are meant to be fighting in Stalingrad!  
 So how did this topic of conversation arrive? Sunday morning I played two games against Mike Marshall in Malifaux on Vassal. In the first game we didn't get past turn 2, it was brutal. My stampede of pigs got the drop on him and due to obscene luck it was all over. In the second game Mike was much more cautious to begin with and kept me on the back foot, winning 6-5(?) in the end.

My test peice for Deadzone terrain. I forgot how cool weathering powders are, but I still think there aren't enough colours. I will try and pick out some details. I also plan to add some plant life.

 Now I'll admit that this dramatic turn around was partly due to a massive change in luck, but knowing what your enemy is capable is critical. It makes me think of one of the games I played at 'The Good, The Bad and The Fated'. My opponent had taken Kirai and because I knew what she could do I made sure that Ikuryo (sp?) never saw the table (by not shooting living or undead things that were within 6" of her or the lost love). As the title of this post says, knowledge is power.

'Lady' or 'Mrs Warpig' ready for spraying. I feel much happier with the model now that I have enlarged her behind.
 Chris King on twitter was arguing that the game unbalances due to this and one should attempt to play as if you didn't know what the other person could do. I disagree. First of all, I think that effectively nulls some of the game, being able to effectively value your models compared to your opponents and thus judge each move. I also think that makes the game much less fun. I don't know about other people, but I always feel a bit cheated if I lose because a rule I did not know about was sprung on me.

I can understand where Chris is coming from though. New players may feel at a disadvantage when they don't know as much as people who played for longer. This is always going to be true, however, you learn more about the nuances of the game. I do think, however, that it is critical to tell people whenever you can what your models are capable of. The games I feel the worst about are the ones where my I assumed my opponent knows something and doesn't.

The last thing I think we can say about this is that tournaments are great. This might seem like a strange leap, but at tournaments you fight new opponents with different crews and playing styles. It is a great way to learn about the game. I keep saying this, but I really recommend that any people who play Malifaux who haven't done should check out the tournament scene. It's well worth it.

 Well thanks for putting up with another one of my rants. Chat soon.

Sunday, 8 June 2014

How to ... Make Pillars

Today I continue with making terrain for 'Not a Bad Thing' ,the tournament running at Worhamma in Sunderland on the 13th September, with some pillars for the honeypot/star board.

 In order to make some yourself you'll need the obvious: pva, a sharp knife (I recommend replacing the blade on your hobby knife for this, it makes it much easier) rule, pencil, cutting mat; and you will also need some foam board. This stuff is absolutely fantastic. I think the best place to get it from is Antenocitis Workshop. I used 3mm stuff.

 First of all, as you can see in the picture above, you need the basic shapes. My measurements were based on the figure I intended to stand upon the plinth. The larger squares are 1.5". The smaller 1.25". The long bits are 2.5" by 1".

Next thing you need to do is making the connecting joints for the pillar. I can't remember what this technique is called by you cut through the first layers of card but not the second (bottom). Then simply remove the foam so you end up with a lip of card as shown in the picture above. These then go over the edge of the next piece as shown below.
Then simply glue the small squares onto each end and then the larger squares ontop of them.One pillar, ready for a sculpture.

I have decided to stick the sculptures down, I'll just have to be careful with them. First I superglued them to their base and (which is a 25mm GW square base) and then PVAd that to the plinth.

Hope you have a good #wyrdweekend.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Porcine Progress

Today I was hoping to do some battle reports from the Vassal tournament, but unfortunately it has been cancelled due to not enough interest. On the positive, I have spent this morning making a bit of progress on some hobby and I thought I would share.

My proudest pig first, it's my old major. This is using the pig ambulance proxy I discussed in an earlier blog post. He's nearly ready for some paint.

Next I have Mrs. Warpig. For those of you who don't know, Malibro do a painting competition each month for Malifaux models. This month's theme is 'Ladies Night'. As soon as I heard this I immediately wanted to paint a female pig. Unfortunately, I had already painted Gracie and I don't like the idea of making a 3 headed pig for the sow. I have struck for trying to make a female warpig.

Honestly, I do not like the current warpig model. It is not pig shaped. I figured however, that when and if Wyrd do produce a new plastic warpig, there will likely be only one sculpt and I will definitely want more than one if I plan to use Ulix. I might see if I can have a go at rounding her out a bit, but I really don't put much stead in my sculpting ability.

Finally on the pig front I have tried to do a bit more work on the piggapult. The Gremlin is taken from the Warpig. One of my favourite thing about Old Major is that he allows you take a crew made entirely of pigs, so I don't want a pesky Gremlin ruining that. I think it's looking better now, with a bit more weight at the back, but there is still something missing. There is a void in between the Gremlin and the mortar and I am not sure what can fill it. Maybe a Gremlin with a looking glass?

 Next I thought I'd show you my planned layout for the western board for 'Not a Bad Thing' which is running at Worhamma in September. The Table it's on is slightly smaller than 3' square, but I thought it was enough to get a good idea of what to do. The bit where the tape measure is and the card protectors are where cliffs will go, at the right height to match with the aqueducts and walkways. There will also be cliff areas directly opposite where the smaller tracks lead into. I am currently debating with myself to make a 3d board or just to make scatter cliff sections. The reason for the latter choice is that I don't have enough space in the house. We'll see what I can manage.

 Finally I thought I'd show where I'd got with my Roman Cavalry. If you remember, I had started building them to paint for my WAAC painting marathon, which you can support and raise money for Macmillan by sponsering here. When I last wrote about them I was not happy, hoping they'd improve with shields and as a unit. As you can see in the picture I think they have, but they're still not great.

 I had also mentioned last time about making bases for them to slot into. The more I investigated, however, the more I realized that area around the horses' base would be too small and the larger base not stable. Thus, I plucked for the old tradition of giving in and just stuck them to their bases. I did, however, make the rookie error of not allowing enough room on either side for 'ranking up'. It really has been a long time since I have done any mass battle games.

Right, that's all the WIP from me. Chat soon.

Thursday, 5 June 2014

Woke up with a hand

Today I read a blog post that discussed when you keep your cards in Malifaux. I thought today I would go quickly over the masters I have played and the way I have thought about it.

 My first master ever for Malifaux was Pandora, who, before everyone shouts 'filth', I only ever played in second edition. With Pandora I almost never left home without a doppleganger, I am not going over why now but she is my favourite model rules wise in Malifaux. I soon found with this pairing of woes that I needed tomes. Pandora triggers her Incite to cast again on tomes and the dopplegangers mimic triggers off tomes. Generally, if I did not have a 7 or more of tomes in my hand I would ditch everything but 10+, it was almost always crucial for me to have a tome.

 My next master was Lynch and I often found myself discarding down to six cards with Lynch, so it rarely made a difference. Very little is needed suits wise with Lynch, though the odd mask is handy and rams if you have Graves are very nice, so it was generally a case of dropping the lowest. When I didn't have enough cards I tended to keep things 7+. It may seem quite low, but I felt that with mulligan I could afford to dice with the cards a bit more.

 Lucius is next up on the list of masters I played and for him the magic number was 7. 7 allows you to 'give command' or whatever the action was to give out AP and also allowed WP6 models to pass the TN13 horror duel Lucius inflicted when he walked, which is what most of the crew I took was (mainly darkened stuff).

My latest master is Somer and I find he is much more suit (ram) dependent. I will always try and have a ram in hand ready for 'Do it like 'dis'. I almost always try and keep a mask aswell, this gives him the opportunity to either summon or use loudest squeal, which is amazing. Again, other than that 10+ were my limit because I wanted specific suits.

These are not hard and fast rules, it always depends on the situation. I am generally loathed to chuck 7-9 because they will not be in your deck later, but if you need the cards there is nothing you can do.

Just my two cents, hopefully someone found it interesting!

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Not a Bad Thing: Initial Plans

If you have been keeping up to date with my ramblings you would have seen that I made loads of terrain for the Sunderland tournament 'The Good, The Bad and The Fated'. Recently Worhamma have announced they will be running another event this year, 'Not a Bad Thing'. It's running on the 13th of September and you can keep up to date either through the facebook event page or on the Wyrd Forum.

 For a brief overview, after receiving some feedback the crew size was increased to 45ss. In response to Joel Henry's request for events without fixed faction, whether the event will be fixed faction or open faction hiring pool is in discussion. 4 games. £15 entry and you will be fed bacon banjos and lunch by the ever-pleasing hosts at Worhamma. Also, due to the amount of space we had, last time there was a dining area, we have increased the size of the event to 32 players, though 13 tickets have already sold!

So more players means more tables. Once again I intend to step up and see what I can provide.

 A little while ago I told everyone about receiving TT Combat's Kickstarter, the MDF terrain, and I said I would review it. I lied. I can, however, now show you the built products which are part way through spraying:

Jen was saying that she would like to have caves for the train tracks to go into. Fortunately, a very generous man known as Dave Golden, or God Golden on the Wyrd Forum, has given me a whole load of large pieces of pink foam to play with:

So I am going to try and build a 3d board for Malifaux, with some cliff faces and stuff. God knows if it will work. I think I am going to stick with the typical wild west dusty style because everyone has got to have at least one...
You can see above that I had started work on another table for the last tournament but basically I had run out of energy. This was going to be my showgirl board, or 'The Star'. I don't intend to make internal walls or anything, on the basis that I am sure a hall could be big enough for a Malifaux battlefield, but as you can see I have many tables. The round ones I am thinking of having raised wooden seating areas, so that they have a base so they can be used as forests. The square tables will be on their side as shown so they can act as linear obstacles. They need to have wooden decking attached to the top.
The picture above is from a grab bag I got from Kingdom Death at Christmas. The bag contained a whole bunch of limited ed models and also a whole bunch of stuff they couldn't sell, like these headless and handless scantily clad ladies. I know this seems a bit out of place, but I thought these could make absolutely awesome statues to go in 'The Star'. I intend to make pillars for them to stand on, making useful scatter. The last, and definitely not least, thing is that I want to make a stage. It will most likely be the centre circle used for turf war in size. I think I am going to have to chat nicely to Nate Zettle to see if I can borrow is hot wire cutter again.

The next problem I have is the base board for this table. When I made the graveyard mat, shown below for those who haven't seen it or can't remember, I intended for it to work either for 'The Star' or for the graveyard. If I need to provide more tables for the tournament, however, I am going to need to provide another mat or board. I have a few ideas, like I could make a wooden board effect across the entire board or I can make another more traditional graveyard mat, but I still haven't decided.

That's all the plans from me for now. I have already have lots of tables made and I suspect the 3D Wild West board to take a long time. As always, I'd love to hear advice and comments. Chat soon.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Wargames Factory Roman Cavalry Review

On my last post I chatted about my plan for a paintathon, 24 hour painting to raise money on behalf of WAAC and Macmillan which you can donate to here, I have been thinking about what 100 models I can paint.

 I, like many wargamers, have a 'pile of shame' of models I haven't got round to. I know I have enough models to paint for the magic 100, but it's thinking of what models I would like to paint. So far I have decided I am going to paint my soviets for bolt action. Above you should be able to see some progress on a test scheme, but they still have a way to go. Below are the soviets I intend to paint. Total 65 models.

After that I still have a third of the models left to paint! I thought I could stick with historical theme, however, and paint up the Roman Cavalry that I got at Christmas gathering dust in the cupboard. In order to do this I had to build them and I thought I should go over what I thought in my initial forays into the box.

First off, I was thoroughly impressed looking at the sprue. There are lots of options for the riders in so far as weapons are concerned. Onto a winner, I thought anyway.
The first thing I did, however, was build the horses. I did this because I intended to work out how to base them. I still have not worked out how to base them. Ideally I'd like to be able to make them slot into whatever base I needed, so intended to make bases that they could just slot into. The base that the horse is standing on, however, is thinner than I thought so I am concerned about it not being stable or not level.

 Moving on from my tangent, I thought the horses were actually really nice. They seemed to have decent musculature, though I am concerned they are a little squat, perhaps it's the size of their heads. Anyway, I thought they were decent.

When I finally got round to build the riders, however, I was thoroughly disappointed. The weapons did not fit into the hands aswell as I thought they would and there are a limited amount of poses with the arms. The arms themselves have no detail, I am not sure if he is wearing sleeves. The head also does not into the grove where it should go, if you do not trim it down he has a very long neck. The head itself also seems to large for the torso, though in the picture they look fine. Basically, I think they look naff.

I am hoping they will look better as a squad, with their shields, and with paint but I am actually not happy with them at all.

If I do include them that will put my total pool of paintathon models up to 77 (12 cavalry in a box). I better start digging out so more things that need a lick of paint!

Finally I would just like to say that I know I have not been anywhere near as regular as I had been at the start, but I really do only want to post something if I have something to say so from now on I won't apologize. I think next time I will go over some plans I have for the next tournament at Worhamma. Until then.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

WAAC Paintathon - It Begins

Sorry I haven't posted recently, I have been away and haven't had much time for myself. Today's post, however, is about something really important.

Recently @docbungle on twitter began a charity campaign on behalf of Macmillan cancer support, who you can find more about here, called WAAC 'Wargamers All Against Cancer'. You can find more about this at his blog, but more importantly you can also support this worthwhile cause at his just giving page This has inspired me to get involved.

As part of this campaign, I am going to be doing a sleepless 24 hour painting marathon, or Paintathon, to raise money for the charity. It's going to be on the August Bank Holiday, to tie in with the other WAAC events. The challenge is to paint 100 28mm or larger scale miniatures. The figures will be built and primed, but everything else will be painted by hand.

Regardless of what happens, I will be doing this. However, what I would really like is as many people to get involved in this as possible. I am currently trying to organize a venue, so that we can have enough space for people to move their elbows, but I also need other people to get involved. If you are in the North East area, think you can take the strain and are willing to go out and get sponsors for a good cause I'd love to hear from you. You can catch me on twitter @proximocoal or email

If you are not in the North East, it would be great if you could get involved anyway. Hopefully together we can make a difference. 

I will be posting updates on my blog when I get them, so please keep on eye on this, but most importantly please find it in your heart to give something to help those who have suffered from cancer. You can find my just giving page here.

Thank you.