Wednesday 30 December 2015

Hobby Costs 2015- A Year in Review

At the beginning of last year, I decided that I would start taking note of what I was spending on my wargaming each month. This was partly inspired by the Frugal Gaming series from Warhammer 39,999 and partly because I was curious as to what I was actually spending.
With 2015 having come to a close, I thought that I would review my spending in the last year, looking at what I got for each army and other hobbying aspects.
A Year of Spending
My hobby totals for 2015 were:
Total amount spent: £1962
Total amount sold: £842
Net total spent: £1116
If we look at the monthly breakdowns:
Perhaps unsurprisingly, months were I sold a lot on ebay resulted in bigger spendings on new stuff (I had all that paypal money burning a hole in my pocket!). Only in March did I sell more than I bought. The biggest expenditures were in January and March. These both contributed towards my White Scars army, as well as purchasing two new board games (that I am still yet to play!).

Monday 28 December 2015

St Andrews Wargaming- 2015 in Review

As 2015 draws to a close, I thought I would take the opportunity to look at what has happened in the past year with respect to my hobbying. So put your feet up, grab the leftover turkey and join me in reminiscing over the past 12 months.

Have a random picture that in no way represent this post.
The Blog
By far the biggest change in my hobbying for this year was starting this very blog you are reading right now (or at least, quickly skimming through until you find something of interest).

Despite playing 40k for over 10 years now, I have only become a recent active member on the online community. It is only in the past 18 or so months that I have become a more active member of 40k online. I used to read the occasional blog or rumour site online to keep up to date with what was happening, but never dreamed of commenting on any posts or articles, never mind starting my own blog.
That all changed when I became more active in the St Andrews University gaming club. I became the wargames rep for a year and starting running a campaign and organising apocalypse games within the club. As part of the campaign, I started sending out weekly updates to the group with battle reports of my games that week. I started wanting to share my opinions on gaming with others, to highlight some of the terrain projects that I had been working on and to comment on some of the changes to 40k that were happening.
This all came to a head when I signed up to attend Blog Wars 9. Since I would be attending Blog Wars, I decided that I wanted to have my own blog. It was something I had been thinking about for a while and finally took the plunge in April. Fortunately, I had the club's upcoming apocalypse game as a nice starting point for the blog, allowing me to showcase a huge battle in my first few posts.

I want to give a big shout out to Dave (Confessions of a 40k addict) and Alex (From the Fang) for their advice on starting the blog and for the continued inspiration that their blogs provide. It's highly unlikely you are not aware of their blogs, but if you are not, check them out.

I have found that having the blog has been a huge boost to my own hobby progress. Wanting to share my progress on projects and games has led me to spend a lot more time on 40k than I have been previously; playing on a regular basis, actually getting stuff painted in a timely fashion, attending tournaments for the first time in over a decade, reading and commenting on many of the fantastic blogs I follow. Having the blog has given me a lot of excitement towards 40k at the moment, and I hope it continues into the future.

Friday 25 December 2015

Merry Christmas!

A Merry Christmas to all my readers and fellow bloggers out there. I hope that Santa was good to you and got you lots of new toys to paint in the New Year!

Wednesday 23 December 2015

Battle Report 36- 1500 pts Orks vs Grey Knights

This week's battle report features my Ork army taking on Adam's Grey Knights. Adam was wanting to take on my Orks, so I thought they would saddle up once again to take on the Emperor's finest.

My Ork army consisted of:
Warboss- Power Claw, Shoota, Eavy Armour, Bosspole, Lucky Stick (with Meganobz)
Big Mek- Eavy Armour, Kustom Force Field (with Shoota Boyz)
20 Slugga Boyz- 2 Big Shootas, Nob with Power Claw and Bosspole (SB1)
20 Slugga Boyz- 2 Big Shootas, Nob with Power Claw and Bosspole (SB2)
30 Shoota Boyz- 3 Big Shootas, Nob with Power Claw and Bosspole (SH1)
15 Lootas (L)
12 Slugga Boyz- Nob with Power Claw and Bosspole (SH2)
Trukk- Big Shoota (T1)
4 Meganobz- Bosspole (M)
Trukk- Big Shoota (T2)
Dakkajet- 3 Supa Shootas (D)
I started with a Warboss and Big Mek. The Warboss is a hard hitter, able to plough through marines. The Big Mek took a Kustom Force Field to help protect the boyz from the Grey Knight's firepower. I then took three big mobs of boyz, enough to weather the firepower of the opposing army and still pack a punch in combat.
The Lootas were there to provide some serious firepower to the army. They can put out an incredible number of high strength shots when they eventually hit.
I took a unit of trukk boyz and a unit of Meganobz in a trukk to give my army some mobility and some hard-hitting power. The Meganobz were taken to provide a very tough unit for Adam's army, I was impressed with how tough Seb's Meganobz proved to be in a previous battle report, needing power claws to come close to denting them.
Finally, I finished the list with a Dakkajet. Apart from being an amazing model, this flyer can put out a lot of highly accurate firepower (at least for Orks).
My warlord trait was Might is Right, giving the Warboss +1S. Not too useful with a Power Claw armed Warboss.

Monday 21 December 2015

Hobby Costs- December 2015

Just a quick post today. This is the final month in my ongoing look at my purchases for the year. December's numbers are:
  • £79.90  (WS) Space Marine army bundle.
Total= £79.90
Running Total= £1116
As you can see, not a lot this month. My only purchase was a bulk army deal that I found on ebay. This contained a wide variety of units, including tactical marines, devastators, assault marines, terminators, grey knights, a terminator librarian, rhinos, razorback and a drop pod.
My plan is to keep some of the transports for my White Scars to use in some of the new formations. The rest I plan to re-sell on ebay in the new year, hopefully equalling or beating the price that I bought them for.
Next comes the fun part, where I get to break down all the spending over the last year and see what I spent all my money on. Look forward to some incoming charts!

Thursday 17 December 2015

Battle Report 35- 1750 pts White Scars vs Chaos Space Marines

This week's battle report sees my White Scars take on Iain's Chaos Space Marines. Iain is a recent addition to the Medusa IV map campaign that I am running and we finally got a chance to play one another (we have had games scheduled in the past that were cancelled last minute due to illness or weather).

I have been playing the same kind of army with my White Scars for a while now, practising for tournaments and refining my standard list. I decided for this game to try something new, to take units that I wouldn't normally play and to mix things up a little.
My list consisted of:
Captain- Bike, Glaive of Vengeance, Hunter's Eye
5 Command Squad- Banner of the Eagle, Apothecary, 3 Grav guns, 2 Storm Shields
5 Bikers- 2 grav guns, Sergeant with power axe and meltabombs
5 Bikers- 2 grav guns, Sergeant with power axe and meltabombs
Stormraven- TL assault cannons, TL Heavy Bolters, 4 Missiles, 2 Hurricane bolters
5 Terminators- Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields
5 Devastators- 4 Missile Launchers
Drop Pod- Deathwind Missile Launcher, Locator Beacon
5 Devastators- 4 Heavy Bolters
Drop Pod- Locator Beacon
5 Assault Marines- Sergeant with Power fist and meltabombs
5 Assault Marines- Flamer, Sergeant with Power Sword and Meltabombs

Monday 14 December 2015

Formation-ing an opinion: The Evolution of Formations in 40k

Formations seem to have become an integral part of army building in 40k these days. Whether that is a good or bad thing is for each individual to decide, today I thought I would take you through my thoughts on formations and how I feel they influence the vast universe of warhammer 40,000 these days.

Not a free transport in sight......
Right off the bat, it is only fair to let you know dear reader, that I rarely use formations in 40k. This is not due to some particular stance on the use of formations, I just like the Combined Arms Detachment (CAD) and find it the easiest way to make up an army and what I have been used to for many years. The second issue is that even with my vast collection of models for some armies, I sometimes still struggle to have the basic requirements for many of the formations that I can field, so am limited in this respect too. The one exception to this is the Ravenwing Strike Force from the 7th edition Dark Angels codex. Being a big fan of Ravenwing (and bike) armies, I have utilised this formation a lot in recent months, even taking an all Ravenwing army to the recent Blog Wars X tournament using the formation and having a measure of success with it in my games.
So this is where these opinions and impressions come from, a player who generally doesn't use formations, but has some experience both playing with them and against them in a competitive and casual environment.
Also, a note of nomenclature. I tend to use Formations and Detachments interchangeably when talking about them. I know that there are differences between the two, but to me, the comments on one could be equally applied to the other.
The Early Days of Formations
Force Organisation Chart
You could argue that one of the earliest instances of the use of formations in 40k was the introduction of the Force Organisation Chart in 3rd edition 40k (I certainly would argue this, and since this is my article, I can do what I want!).

Hasn't changed much at all.
Prior to 3rd edition, armies were constructed using the percentage system. Your army would be composed of units/models based on the percentage of the points used, for example; 25% or more core units, up to 25% characters, etc.
When 40k was re-launched with 3rd edition in 1998, a new mechanic for army building was introduced- the Force Organisation Chart (now known as the Combined Arms Detachment). For the first time, units in an army were separated into 5 different types; HQ, Elites, Troops, Fast Attack and Heavy Support. Players constructed armies by selecting units from "slots" in the force organisation chart and calculating their points cost for the unit until the agreed upon points limit was reached. The only compulsory choices in your army were one HQ and two troops slots. This limit still applies today in the CAD.
The idea was to allow players to build themed forces, more representative of typical armies your fraction would be likely to field. Your army would consist of an HQ unit to lead the army and two units of core troops to provide the backbone of the army. Additional troops units could be used to bolster your force and more powerful units could be taken from the other slots, though in lesser numbers to represent their more limited availability.

Friday 11 December 2015

Hobby Costs- November 2015

As part of my ongoing look at my hobby costs for the year, here are November's numbers:
  • -£10.00          Sold Citadel wood leaves
  • £3.00 (OT)    Postage Costs
  • £5.16 (OT)    Ebay charges
  • £11.50 (WS) Landspeeder (ebay)
  • £17.00 (WS) Scout Bikers
  • £60.00 (OT)  Blog Wars X costs
  • £17.78 (WS) Bikers and Landspeeder (ebay)
Total for November = £105.44
Running Total = £1036

The biggest expense this month was the trip down to Stockport for blog wars X. While I was there, I also treated myself to a box of Scout Bikers to use with the new White Scars formations I recently reviewed. For this reason, I also picked up some more bikers and landspeeders from ebay.

I only sold one item this month. Someone on twitter was looking for spare leaves from the citadel wood kit. I had a couple of sets lying around and got rid of them.

Only one month left in the year to tally up. In the new year, I will be doing a review of my hobby costs for 2015, looking at what I spent and where it went.

Tuesday 8 December 2015

Medusa IV Campaign- New Rules: Campaign Stratagems

With the campaign having drawn to a close for the holiday period, I was having a think about how to improve it for the New Year. Inspired by the Cityfight and Planetstrike expansions of old, I decided to make up some Campaign Stratagems for the players to purchase with the resource points they earn throughout the campaign.
Campaign Stratagems
Campaign Stratagems are some special rules that can be purchased with resource points (RP) for your games.
Each Stratagem will cost 30 RP. You may only purchase one stratagem per battle phase (so two in a campaign turn) and must inform your opponent of which stratagem you are using before either army is deployed. The Stratagem must be purchased at the start of one of the Battle Phases, but can be used during any one battle during the campaign turn. Only one Stratagem may be used (per side) in each battle fought.
Camouflage Netting
You have obtained camouflage to hide a small portion of your army from the enemy firepower.
Select one unit/model in your army (that is not a Superheavy vehicle or monstrous creature). In the first turn, that unit has the Shrouded special rule until they move or fire a weapon. Once they have done this, they lose the Shrouded special rule, but gain the Stealth special rule for turn one.
An elite unit has circumvented the enemy patrols to launch an ambush on the enemy lines.
Select one unit/model in your army (that is not a Superheavy vehicle or monstrous creature). That unit must be held in reserve and gains the Outflank rule.

Thursday 3 December 2015

Battle Report 34- 1200 pts Orks vs Orks

This week's battle report features a civil war between Ork Clans- My Deathskulls army takes on Sebastian's Bad Moon Orks in a straight up brawl for supremacy.

My army consisted of:
Warboss- Power Claw, Shoota, Eavy Armour, Bosspole (With SL1)
Painboy (With SL1)
25 Shoota Boyz- Nob with power claw and Bosspole, 3 Big Shootas (SB1)
24 Slugga Boyz- Nob with power claw and Bosspole, 3 Big Shootas (SL1)
16 Stormboyz- Nob with power claw and Bosspole (ST1)
6 Warbikers- Nob with power claw and Bosspole (WB)
12 Slugga Boyz- Trukk with big shoota (TB)
Wartrakk- Scorcha (W1)
Wartrakk- Scorcha (W2)
Deff Dread- 3 Power Claws, Scorcha (DD)
My army is always led by a Warboss. He is the toughest in the mob and allows me to Waaagh if I want to. I took him with a power claw and some armour for protection. I also supported him with a Painboy. I thought he would be more useful than a Big Mek with Kustom force field, as I would get the Feel no Pain bonus in combat too.

Tuesday 1 December 2015

Medusa IV Campaign- Turn 3, Battle Phase 2 moves

With battle phase 1 having come to an end, the players made their moves for battle phase 2. The map now looks like this: