Thursday, October 25, 2012

Something Big - compliments of Adam from SW blog

 Today we have a very compelling and promising guest post from Adam Smith:

Hey Warhammer 40K fans, I'd like to share some info with guys about a new website project I'm working on -and it's pretty big. Really big infact.

Now I'm a big fan of the 40K blogosphere and personally I prefer following the blogs to trawling through the forums.

Only problem is, I've found myself struggling to find the good stuff this year and it's for 2 reasons.

1) From The Warp stopped being the hub of 40K blogging
I used to be able to find loads of great stuff on From The Warp's blogrolls from really obscure little blogs, but very talented bloggers non the less.

I understand that all these blogrolls became too much for From The Warp to manage.

2) Bell of Lost Souls changed how they manage their blogrolls
One upon a time everyone and his dog could get on the BoLS blogroll.

Then after a couple of overhauls, only the small blogs that don't post very often were allowed on the blogroll, while only the big sites were allowed on the Elite Blogroll, provided you wrote content for BoLS of course.

And that kind of screws over all the medium blogs in the middle and kind of holds the bigger blogs to ransom.

It's tough for new bloggers
While there are other 40K blog hubs out there, they don't drive anywhere near as much traffic as these two sites did.

Because of FTW and BoLS not serving the community as they once did, getting 'discovered' in the blogosphere is really hard for new bloggers starting out.

Don't get me wrong, I've found some truly amazing stuff by trawling through the blogosphere, but I've had to do some major blogroll trawling, Google image searching, you name it.

It's tough for readers
I think I'm subscribed via RSS Feed to about 8 blogs, because they're the big ones that update regularly. And that's simply because it's convenient. I don't have time to trawl the blogrolls all the time.

But in an ideal world, we'd want to see all the best bits from the entire blogosphere without having to dig for it, right?

That means we'd be able to find great painting guides, conversions or battle reports from absolutely anyone. Not just the big blogs that update all the time.

Alright, alright. You're probably thinking that I'm going to create another 40K blog hub, well, you'd be have half way right.

What's going to make this blog hub as good as From The Warp back in it's hay day and better than all the other hubs and networks that have sprung up over the past year or so?

Two things actually:

1) Readers will be able to read and filter articles from the blogosphere without blogrolls

That means any blogger's articles can be found, so your blog doesn't need to be as big as Fritz40K for people to read you.

2) The site will rank in the top 3 Google search results for Warhammer 40K, 40K and all of the Warhammer 40K races.

Yes, that is a BOLD statement. But as some of you may know, I work in Search Engine Optimisation as the Link Building & Content Manager for a leading agency in the UK. It's going to take some hard work, but it's achievable.

But what it means is that the site will get lots of exposure from all the rankings, loads of traffic and as a result the blogs will receive far more visitors, subscribers, etc.

Meanwhile, my girlfriend is incredibly technical and will be bringing my creative concepts to life in simple, fast loading functionality for you all.

This is a real top-level explanation of what we're up to. I didn't want to delve too deeply into the details and there's loads more stuff that this website will do for the online community. This is the real tip of the ice berg.

If you have any questions, I'd love to answer them! It's probably best that I explain all my reasons for creating something for the community in the Comments below rather than fill up this article with personal stuff.

But for now if you could head over to my old 40K blog and bookmark or follow it, we'll keep you up to date with all the developments right up to the big launch in January!

And I just wanted to say "thank you" for all your years of kindness and suppport.


Monday, October 15, 2012


And that’s not all!

When Chris stopped in last weekend, we also smashed our way through a reasonably intense game of Warmachine: once again with fully painted factions at the standoff, which must be a record in my casual gaming lifetime -two systems, two games, two different factions, one evening, all glory. Chris brings a certain hobby prowess to the table, to be sure.

Apologies once more for the camera photos. I still have not located my real camera and this is incredibly frustrating as I have some Malifautos that I need to take and to publish from an extraordinary turn of events a few weeks back now (in short, I won something blindingly superlative). Glory. I simply refuse to photos that particular bit of news with my phone. It would be a sin.

Well. You have likely heard me say this before; you will certainly hear me say it again. We are living in a Golden Age of the hobby. I do not exaggerate.

Chris and I also pushed boldly into a game of Warmachine both because we could do so, and because it would be rude not to.

I should say, my warmatactics are sketchy at best. I tend to muddle my way through my own agenda and rarely have a solid sense of what my opponents can accomplish. I just need to play more, I think, and read more, and play more. And so on.

For example, this was my first outing against Epic Deneghra… her feat is staggering –totally caught me flatfooted and I was stunned to watch just about everything and everyone fester and drop so abruptly. I also failed to realize that she could turn my own models against me, which made Kreoss’ fancy Bastion bodyguard seem like a rather bad notion in the end.

And indeed, I consistently tend to get poor Kreoss stuck in some wild, awkward, and problematic situations: vis-à-vis an enemy heavy Jack for example. To his unflinching credit, Kreoss did zealously dish out some significant damage, and my poor caster held it together for far longer than I ever had reason to expect, but that is hardly what one could call strategy.

“Suck it in. Tighten up” is invariably solid advice, but it’s become a more like a mantra with Kreoss. 

On my left flank, I thought that I was well situated, with the Choir singing their boons here and there for the two Jacks in their path. That part went smoothly. But then three weird, undead jack-killing ghouls showed up on the horizon and not only dismantled that Light Jack on my far left, but also reassembled him as a Bone Jack.

Naturally, that Bone Jack ate the Choir for good measure. Insult meet Injury.

To be candid, I do not love my Heavy Jack just yet. I have never been able to make this lumbering monster work for me, and I always end games thinking “that was a fair chunk of points for very little return.” This game was no exception. He did absolutely nothing except waddle up the middle and fail utterly to ruin Deneghra’s day when given a really phenomenal chance to do so.

And so, in the end, the warmadead came out on top. There were moments when I felt the result could have been closer, but the simple truth is my doods were never really in it to win it. Next time! And now that I am in the burbs and have a proper nerd realm to call my own, that time should be really quite soon.

Moreover, I intend to pick up a paintbrush again for the first time in months! Glorious.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

First Game of Sixth!

It finally happened.

First let me thank you for your patience. I have been away from the blog a bit (though very hard at work) while the wife and I transplanted everyone, dog, babies, and all, even the plants, at the end of last month. It’s been an intense but wildly rewarding ordeal.

My new (and glorious?) nerd space remains an absolute ruin… but it is my hobby space reborn at long last! It will be tremendous, I am confident, but presently it is a shambolic assemblage of boxes and mayhem with a dehumidifier in the corner. Perhaps as importantly, the internet is up and working, and I am back on your screen. It’s good to be here again. Thanks for having me.

Unfortunately, in darkest depths of one the aforementioned boxes, my camera has been securely secreted –too securely, in fact. I cannot, for the life of me, find it. And so I must enact that dreadful sin that I once promised I would never commit. I am posting picture taken with my camera phone. I tried to doctor the images somewhat to make them less abrasive, but I am reasonably certain that the results are worse than the originals. Where are you, camera?!

Apologies for the terrible photos.

Well. My very kind friend and (now reasonably near) neighbor Chris popped round to break in the basement and walk me through my very first game of 6th edition. This is a very promising turn of events. I love Chicago, but it can be a hobby wasteland at times.

As for 6th… I loved it.

Of course, there were a few bumps. We spent a small amount of time with our noses in the book and, to be candid, I forgot a bit here and there –my Warlord trait for example was established then immediately ignored. I cannot even remember what it was called, and certainly do not have the foggiest notion of what it was meant to contribute to my force. More’s the pity. I’m sure it would have come in handy somewhere.

Still, despite the noob jitters, the game itself was tremendous. I had a blast. We played at 1000pts, which worked far better, and was far more exciting than I would have anticipated. Credit to the game here, and I just recently read an article by Fritz on this very topic. Check it out if you haven’t already.

I really dig the new mission generation system and found the exchange genuinely engaging and impressive. It’s a great mechanism. I really enjoyed the victory point conditions and found that it made the game much more dynamic than any non-houserules version of 40K that I have seen to date.

In a word. Glorious.

I brought my Necrons against Chris’s Nurgle CSM. I basically cobbled everything that I have both painted and unboxed into a reasonable force as follows:

Destroyer Lord -and some techno goodies
2x 10 Warriors –the meat of the matter
5 Immortals -because that’s all I have right now.
5 Deathmarks -to look threatening and accomplish very, very little.
4 Wraiths -to bodyguard the Lord and eat otherwise hard units like air.
4 Destroyers –with sadly unrealized ambition, as they were summarily dismantled by the DP.

Chris’s force was assembled as such:

Winged Daemon Prince –who looks ferocious and earned the MVP. I’m not sure I even scratched him.
2x 10 CSM Nurgle –very tough customers with flamers.
10 Chosen Nurgle –his unit had a target on its back and got utterly minced by the Lord and Wraiths on my left flank.
Rhino –for one of the CSM units; the Necrons tore through this with the new Hull Points system, which I really like and not just for the obvious reason.
Vindicator –who might have earned the LVP with the exception of the tragically poor performance of my Destroyers. This Vindi couldn’t hit anything and the Wraiths disposed of it with good taste and manners.

In game terms, the DP and main units went up my right flank ...and crushed it. My Lord and Wraiths went up my left flank and crushed it. And so, we basically hooked around one another. At the end of the day, his crushing was more convincing than mine and Chaos won the day.

In sum, the new rules are wonderful. Necrons are still my go-to army. Having said that, I have at least one entirely new force on the cards for a special event next year (more on that soon), as well as an unquenchable need to paint some of those Dark Vengeance lovelies. We'll be seeing some Arrugginiti love for the first time in a long time! And then, of course, there are some cracking games in the mix: Zombicide, Warmachine, Malifaux (more on that very soon as well), X-Wing, Dystopian Wards ... and that Titan I've got to build. Mercy!

And, of course, Wreck Age!

My hobby cup runneth over once more! It’s good to be back.