Saturday, January 3, 2015

MMXIV - the year in review

With the year over, it's time to get this yearly review going.. (it's whats popular in the blogosphere these days, isn't it?)

So, this has been the year where I've officially stepped away from GW as a gamer (although I'll admit to painting half a model), not that I consider myself stopped playing their games, but with every year I find myself less and less interested in anything they have to offer.
I'll not go on to rant about what they do do right and wrong, suffice to say that there is a reason for no blog posts here with a GW label so far, not even Epic.

Instead, this has been the year where I've started playing Firestorm Armada seriously, getting almost twenty games in this year, which is slightly phenomenal as I've seldom got that much time for gaming, let alone painting a decent force** for a game, but which I've actually accomplished this year.
The reason I've actually got my behind in gear and done something this year is in no small part due to the launch of Firestorm: Armada 2.0 in late 2013, which took a decent rule system with some flaws and turned it into a well polished system with lots of options, and an overall balance that leaves a lot of larger games behind.
This relaunch inspired me and a lot of my clubmates to actually get our nascent fleets in order, and in a few cases start new ones, so I'm not alone in my Firestorm focus.

Inspired by this, I've also spent some time as a Spartan Vanguard, showcasing Armada at our local game store, (shameless plug: Alphaspel), generating a little bit of interest, and we're nearing the point where the game should be able to get on by its own, thanks to Orwellbo... Sorry, Facebook.

As Spartan has taken over as my main source of miniature addiction enabler, it should only be fair to mention the rest of their line up that I've dragged people in to:

Dystopian Legions :Victorian SciFi at it's best; large scale (~32 mm), nice ruleset and beautiful miniatures. I started playing a little short of two years ago, with the 1.0 rules, but this year it also got a 2.0 version, going from a small-scale platoon game to a company sized game.
The actual release leaves a bit to be desired, delays in manufacturing and a rulebook that was not really internally cohesive made the game a bit slow started, but with a FAQ released and the manufacturing issues sorted out I really think this game will take off... The new release has expanded the local player base with about 100%! (Ok, that wasn't hard, with only two to start with...)

Firestorm Planetfall : Once upon a time, back when Epic Armageddon had just started its descent into the abyss, I happened to stumble upon a small-scale game called Invasion, with beautiful sci-fi tanks and support vehicles. The game was made by a gang called Studio Sparta, and was the predecessor for what is currently known as Planetfall. I've been playing Invasion (full name: 'Firestorm Invasion: Planetfall') a dozen or so times the past years, and I look forward to the game line getting more support (and hope that the Terran MAW-09 makes a reappearance, that model really deserves some more table time...)

I've not gotten as many games in of Dystopian Legions 2.0 or Firestorm: Planetfall as I would have liked, but I played enough of both of their predecessors to be be able to recommend the games anyway, and once again I've got a decent amount painted.
A lot of my DL Prussians actually got their paint already last year, but this year I've finished up a lot of things lying semifinished, and moving forward the Covenant of Antarctica will probably be my main force.

I've also been seriously considering Infimity and Malifaux, but not gotten started on either of them. I've printed the Infinity 3d edition rulebook, so I'll probably give it a read-through if nothing else, and I really need to get my Hoffman box for Malifaux painted up as well, especially since his plastic incarnation has been released.

Malifaux is one of the games I've been seriously eying over the year, it has a nice combo of fast to play, different mechanics, and general weirdness (Victorian cyborgs? Yes please...)

A bit rambling, but suffice to say, 2014 has been a fairly good gaming year, and while the first half of 2015 looks like I'll have to concentrate on painting instead of gaming, it should leave me with a lot of things painted to try out on the table...

Stay tuned for some actual resolutions for the new year!

** Which reminds me, I need to do a proper fleet listing for my Armada fleets, both Terrans, Aquans and the minor fleets, but I do know that I've managed to paint ~2200 pts for my Aquan fleet, with a lot more lying around not even started...

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