Humble Introductions

Greetings and welcome to my blog – thanks for stopping in. . The content of what I will be posting here will be primarily related to table top gaming; i.e. board and miniature games. However I would expect from time to time for it to drift onto topics such as books, movies and video games. The reason for starting the blog is as an exercise to be regularly writing and putting out content. I hope you enjoy!

Friday, 24 January 2014

Master Class

Last weekend the UK Masters came and went. Despite my initial trepidation about the event I have to say that the day was fantastic. Due to work commitments and a young family I was really only in a position to attend the first day and not able to join the side event “League of Extraordinary Henchmen”.

The event was run with a relaxed atmosphere and I thoroughly enjoyed every game that I played over the course of the day. They were some of the most challenging but also the friendliest games that I had played since begging to play Malifaux.

I managed to pull out a win and two losses – one going to James (@mythicFOX83) and the dark horse Greg (@gregpiskosz). What was nice about both games is that I lost by 1VP in both and they were very close. With James I didn’t understand some of the VP objectives he was going for and Greg I only have myself to blame with some slow play which denied myself the 4th turn that would have made a big difference.

Rather than try to write up each game I thought it might be better to speak about the crews that I faced and some tips from each of them

Neverbourn- Lilith (Greg)

Greg had a good mix of tarpit models to tie up my crew (Bad JuJu and Waldergiest) and then used the Nepehlim as an objective runners which really suited the scheme pool. These are backed up by Lilith’s movement tricks and the Illuminated as heavy hitters. This is a strong list used by other Neverborne players this weekend.I found it best to concentrate on the tots and young Neverbourn before they grow stronger and focus on the key VP grabbers for the crew.

Arcanists – Ramos (James)

You can see James painted crew on his awesome blog –

James starts with a small crew of elite M&S (Miners & Steamfiters for those who don’t know). This then turns into an elite crew + lots of spiders that can again tie you in combat and restrict your actions. Still working out a good way to take this crew out but obviously area effect would be great as well and anything that removes scrap counters. Attacking Ramos which was my original play is very hard; he had a lot of defensive abilities to make it tough to take him out unless you have good shooting. All of which seem to be lacking in my current resser minions…

Resurrectionists – Nicodem (Jakab)

A couple of really neat tricks for Jakab’s crew – Mortimor just ‘sspew corpse counters with My Favourite Shovel and Corpse Bloat. He also uses dogs when the Protect Territory scheme is out and runs them forward to drop scheme markers on the 1st turn. As I’ve seen before both Nicodem and Mortimor are however very vulnerable if they become exposed and once they go down the crew goes with them.

Should you ever have the opportunity to attend the masters I would recommend it. Despite the strength of the last day of “Lynch” based crews I thought that all of the factions where still strong. Yes Ramos is great for the Arcanists, but so is McMorning for Ressers or Lynch for 10T, most of the factions feel like they have a strong play style and master that they have access to and its down to player ability to be successful (or lack of from me).

I hope to learn from these mistakes and plan for them at my next event – SmogCon!

Until then it’s back to the painting table – I have Nicodem to get finished before looking at what to start painting for 2014!

Monday, 13 January 2014

Looking to 2014 (1 of 2) – nefarious plans and schemes

While 2013 was a disrupted year of gaming for me my aim for 2014 is to get back into my gaming with some gusto. I have a few work related issues that may stand in my way, however with Malifaux M2E coming to the point where many of the models now have rules available for them and picking up popularity, pace and players in the UK scene I hope this will offer new opportunities to get more games in.

My plans for the 1st half of 2014 look like the following:

January 2014 – UK Masters - By some statistical anomaly I’ve ended up entering the UK Masters this year, more by default rather than skill but that never stopped me claiming credit for something. I thought I best rush in and confirm attendance before anyone notices the issue. So the good news for me is that as the bottom ranked players for the competition is that expectations are low, which is fortunate as it should go hand in hand with my results. I’ve been drawn in a pool with people that I’ve never played before which should make for some fun games. I don’t envy my buddy Timmy who seems to have ended up in the pool of death but equally I know I will have some tough games ahead of me. My take away(s) from the weekend would be to gain some more confidence playing tough opponents so that I don’t get so nervous when playing at top tables during tournaments and I will consider the event a “win” if I am able to get anything better than 3 losses.

February 2014 – SmogCon – my initial interest in attending this event was related to catching up with a few old gaming buddies in the south. However at the same time they got into Malifaux they have also got in Warmahordes, which they will be playing. However as I meet more people in the Malifaux tournament scene and through the Vassal leagues this now seems like a great opportunity to catch up with people. I wasn’t a huge fan of the painting requirements when announced (though it doesn’t affect me as most of my Wave 1 Ressers are painted) and the inclusion of Wave 2 was frustrating as I haven’t had much time to play them due to real life commitments and they will literally only be finished a few weeks before the event. However playing devil’s advocate does say that there will be some great looking games which showcase how great Malifaux looks and that some players only play one master many of which are in Wave 2 (The Dreamer and Collette come to mind). Either way it should be good event. I am hoping to have Nicodem ready to play at this event.

March 2014 – Haul of Eggs 2 – It’s nice to return to a local tournament after Clouseau has had a few issues with finding a venue that can accommodate us. No idea what I will be taking to the tournament on the day. It might depend on what I can get painted by the time the event comes around.

2nd Quarter 2014 – Warhammer World - I will probably be going up to Warhammer World for another day of gaming. It looks likely to be 1 day of 40k and 1 day of kill team. I will skip the kill team as I have another mistress called Malifaux who scratches my skirmish itch but I look forward to getting some more of the Necrons painted and back on the table.

Friday, 3 January 2014

The State of the Lizard – December 2013 in review

So December has come and gone as did November with a very busy time for me from both work and family perspective. I’ve squeezed in some time for games but not much time for blog writing.

Over the past few weeks I’ve finally got back to playing 40k and had to rapidly assemble some of my Necrons for a day of games up at Warhammer World. This was a great excuse to catch up with some of my mates from around the UK who all came for the weekend and sample the finest chicken the Hooters could provide. I really wanted to have some more painting shots done for the Necrons and I hope to put up a blog post following the painting later this year. However it will never replace Malifaux for me.

Santa delivered a few new games to me and I dusted off a couple to play:

1) King of Tokyo: Halloween – this has always been a popular game with our group (guess which monster I play) but with this expansion it really kicked things up a notch. The two new monsters have a great design behind them and the costumes add an excellent mechanic to the game. I have no reservations in recommending this expansion, a must buy.

2) Defenders of the Realm – playing a lot like Pandemic plus with more complexity and a theme that I really like my wife and I enjoyed our first play through, though we did win. I am looking forward to playing again but the variability of the game feels a little limited, I would like to play again to ensure that we have the rules correct and also to play with more players. My worry with the game is the variation of the game on a second play. There is an expansion and a kickstarter from last year which should address this issue but at this moment neither is available at time of writing.

3) Eldritch Horror – another cooperative game, this time set within the Arkham/Lovecraft mythos. If you have played Arkham horror then straight out of the box you will be familiar with this game. It is different enough to have its own feel but close enough that I wouldn’t feel the need to own both games.  It has a great theme which comes across well and also plenty of variety straight out to the box. It also shares Arkham’s lots of fiddly rules to remember and on-going effects, which was challenging for the first play through. However I am keen to get it back to the table again in the next few months.

4) Marvel Legendary – when I first played this game I wasn’t particularly won over. I loved the theme having always been a Marvel fan but found that the game left me a little cold. Everyone drawing from the same pool of heroes never made me feel like I was Spiderman or Iron Man and adding a completive point scoring element to a cooperative game made the game less enjoyable for me. However with the first two expansions and the legendary app which randomizes your game set up I found the game greatly improved. I’ve started to really get into it and nearly picked it up when I am in the states next week. However to purchase all of this in the UK you are looking at the £100 mark, while a great game I would struggle to recommend this for any but the diehard fans.

5) A Game of Thrones: The Board Game – Decided to break this classic out again, the rules came back quickly and even with a few new players we managed to get through the game in about 2.5 hours. Having read the books now the game nails the feeling of manoeuvring your forces and vying for control of the continent of Westeros. For my money it’s one of the best dudes on a map game that you can play. If you’re looking for a step up from your risk games then defiantly check this one out.

That’s a quick update/review of board games, next time I hope to talk about what 2014 holds in store for me.