Salute 2014 – Dreadball


The Floating Citadel denizens made their annual pilgrimage to Salute – more on that in another post; to cut a long story short I am now a proud owner of Dreadball – a game I have been meaning to get my hands on for over a year.

In true servitob style, the test minis were up and painted within a matter of hours of the box being opened. The technique used here is apparently called “Greyscale Washing”, if any of you googlespiders want to know more details I can point you in the right direction.

The aim was to do something very quick to make the game playable in the shortest amount of time. Mantic stuff is so cheap that if I ever miraculously got enough quality time for actually giving a damn about multi-layer highlights and all that nonsense then I could simply buy new teams. For now, I consider 2.4 seconds a reasonable amount of time to spend per model.

13-04-14 035

13-04-14 036

I’ve also read through the rules – it looks like a very promisingly fun game!

Sherriff Releases New Online Marketplace


Unless you’ve been living under a very non-GW rock for the past few days you cannot have failed to notice that there’s been a bit of a shake-up with the Lenton based purveyor of plastic crack. Today they have unveiled a new website, well, I call it a website but it’s really more of a web store.

Capture

Now, it’s well-known among the general Internet that Games Workshop are often lambasted as Satanistic money grabbers, filled with an insatiable greed for not only gold, but the tears of long-term, loyal gamers that were cradled at its loving teat since Warhammer burst into the world aeons ago. So, this new website seems to pander to that meme rather well. Gone are all the hobby articles, gone are the (necessary to play) FAQs for their games and we are solely left with a site where the only option given to us is to buy their stuff…

Here, comfy in my chambers inside the 6 Inch Move floating citadel I happen to quite like the look of the new site. I’m not so thrilled at the idea that we are actually now being presented with the GW true face. The hobby is now something we do at home, the game is irrelevant, just shut up and buy our stuff.

I don’t want this to turn into yet another rant about GW and their prices (although I did find it funny that the first picture the new site presented to me was the image to buy an Imperial Knight) but when you remove all content save the store. Sorry GW, you’re not doing yourselves any favours in the reputation stakes there.

Off to Salute


salute2014webbannerIt’s April, while to many people I imagine that means the potential for people to dress in large rabbit suits (damn furries!) and also an over-indulgence in chocolate eggs, for those of us with more of a bent towards pushing plastic and metal soldiers around made-up battlefields we look forward to a different kind of event.

This coming Saturday sees the annual return of the Salute event. Salute sees the gaming fraternity descend upon the London docklands in an orgy of gaming goodness. It takes place at the eXel centre, a huge complex of rooms where a number of shows take place at the same time. I’ve never seen any of them be as interesting as the toy soldiers show though.

Normally a gathering of gamers in a restricted space is nothing but a miasma of body odour and beard-generated static electricity but, thankfully, there’s enough headroom there in the hall that this isn’t an issue unless you want to get all friendly with some of the neck beards.

From my perspective I really look forward to this day. Despite the large amount of travelling involved from the floating citadel it’s very much an experience I look forward to. A day out with good friends, seeing the latest and greatest on offer from a hobby I’ve been involved in for 22 years.

Wondering if I should take the SLR this year to grab some nice piccies?

Farewell XBox 360, Hello PS4!


Continuing on from last week’s console blurb I finally got around to getting a PS4. I’ve had my Xbox 360 for many years, and in retrospect I’ve been very happy with it and it’s been an amazing social gaming platform.

Unfortunately or fortunately depending whether you care I’ve never been much of a fanboy so my progression wasn’t directly on to the Xbone despite my excellent experiences with all things X related. I simply looked around at the early adopters – out of all my old Xbox gaming buddies only one has got an Xbone. The rest seem to have gone to PS4. So if I am to maintain my gaming buddies it seemed like the natural progression. It seems the only selling point of the Xbone at the moment is Titanfall, but I suck at those types of games so no personal loss there.

I’m happy with my decision, at least until Gears Of War 4 comes out!

Consoles versus PC – The Mass Debate


video-gamesHere’s a debate which has been raging for, well, not very long compared with say the history of cutlery, but it is relevant to those of a nerd persuasion ie everyone on the floating citadel.

Back in the mists of time this debate spilled across the playgrounds of the country albeit in a different guise. Back then PCs were crap and consoles weren’t much better. Kids would trade punches and fight real battles to defend the honour of the Sinclair Spectrum against the mere suggestion that the Commodore 64 was a better machine (it was and anyone who says otherwise deserves a slap).

Skip a few years and the rock throwing was between the Nintendo kids and Sega kids. The Atari ST owners looked on smugly, whilst the kids with the Commodore Amigas knew that they were the top of the pile. But any machine was a lot of pocket money and if Santa Claus was dumb enough to bring you anything but an Amiga then you knew you had to justify your choice; that you had an ST for its better midi output which was about the only reason to get one. Cue lots of kids trying to pretend to know what that actually meant in reality.

Moving on to current times and everything is a billion times better than previously. Go back and play a game from yesteryear just to see how bad things were. I installed a C64 emulator the other day to revisit some old classics. It was awful. Gaming now is great. No doubt we’ll look back in ten years from our matrix style immersion tanks and laugh, but for now we are in a golden age.

Significantly, there are no real losers in today’s market. You can buy any up to date gaming platform and get some great games. Sure there are market leaders and some shaky outliers, but its all generally quality stuff.

Fights from the past do remain however to some extent, this time over the decision to play PCs or console games. Notice how I said play. Unlike in the past where gaming was an expensive niche hobby, most serious gamers will own both as relative prices are lower and the technology has more value in terms of use ability.

There are pros and cons to the whole PC versus console decision. A lot of it rides on game availability, the sheer number for the PC gives it a massive edge. Also the types of game, MMOs being a popular format and not widely played on consoles. Personally however I have not played much on my PC all year, choosing instead to spend my game time on consoles. For me currently its the ease of use that wins it, being able to switch on and get stuck in with mates without having to patch this or reconfigure that or upgrade this component to play. Having kids means my game times are few and far between and I want to get the most out of them.

No doubt most people will disagree as PC gamers can be such snobs!

Irreverant views on playing with toy soldiers

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 118 other followers