Category Archives: Firestorm Armada

Mr Universe


In the first Matrix film when Agent Smith is interrogating Morpheus to try to gain the access codes for the Zion mainframe he utters the following words;

“I want to share with you a revelation I’ve had, during my time here.”

While I have not been trying to classify Humanity as a species, I have been thinking about my tabletop gaming. I made a post a while back asking people how they got into the gaming hobby and shared my own experience in this regard. I was continuing to ponder just why it is that I continue in this hobby, it has been the one that has by far lasted the longest. Even alongside my collection of video games and the various consoles I have owned, the one hobby that I’d be saddest to lose would be my tabletop gaming.

The realisation that I came to really was that in many cases it isn’t the rules, it isn’t the often awesome models that there are, dare I say it isn’t the immeasurable pleasure of the social interactions I get with my friends while we are playing (although that is a big plus point). The thing that keeps me going in this hobby are the universes. I frequent a number of forums that I read on a regular basis, extending my work lunch time considerably while I take things in and revel in the great nebulous cloud of nerd. What I have always been impressed with is that for the majority of gamers there is no end to the number of games that they will investigate and indulge in, providing of course that they can find a community for that game in order to provide the outlet for playing. I have rule books sitting on my shelf at home for games that I am sure none of my friends I play with have even heard of. Some of them I even have miniatures for and capacity to play those games.

Yet, I have been in this hobby for my whole adult life and the majority of my childhood. When I was little I used to read prodigious amounts of fiction and loved watching cartoons set in strange and far off places. Gaming has just brought out those themes in another format. I am effectively a slave to fictional universes. This doesn’t just extend to my gaming, I love things like Star Wars and Star Trek, I may just be labelled as a geek or a nerd because of this, afterall, one cannot really argue that I fit into a stereotype (with the exception that I am married and do not always have maliferous body odour). However, these things just feed my imagination and that is what I love.

I started off gaming with Warhammer 40,000 all those years ago and that is an amazing universe with a lot of depth. I have then become enraptured with numerous others but as I get older and still these things come to pass I am aware that not everyone shares my enthusiasm. My gaming circle is quite small and we are all of differing means. Due to the fact that my wife and I earn respectable salaries and do not (yet) have kids, I have a decent pool of disposable income that I fritter away much to the chagrin of my long-suffering better half. Therefore my outlook is different to the others. Before attending our gaming session on Saturday of the weekend just gone I went to our local gaming store to grab something before heading off to pack my stuff to go. Recently they have started stocking items for a new (to me) game called Secrets of the Third Reich. I grabbed the rulebook and we had a brief look during our gaming session. I took it home and read it later on, I was very impressed with the background but not so much with the minis available from the company (however, the game is designed to be compatible with any 28-30mm World War II models). But it we look at things from a historical point of view I can show you the development of our gaming circle. It started with me and Gribblin playing 40k together and this progressed to Warhammer. I then introduced him to Warmachine and we have played that on occasion. After meeting with Servitob we got him into 40k, then I introduced them to Uncharted Seas and following into Firestorm Armada. I bought the rulebook for Malifaux and once nBreaker and another of our friends came along we started them off on Warhammer, got them into Uncharted Seas and currently nBreaker is my most fought opponent in Firestorm. He also is the only other person to have stuff for Malifaux and I think we’ll be breaking that out soon enough to try.

Both of our two “newbies” are yet to really establish themselves in gaming, especially considering the large quantity of stuff the rest of us have. There I was with another rulebook in hand for another universe. I was very impressed with the background for Secrets of the Third Reich but then we did play our first Mark 2 game of Warmachine as well, which was a lot of fun and the first outing for my Retribution (I lost but learnt a heck of a lot).

It was after considering the fact that I get into all these games and it’s not really fair to “push” these games onto my friends (I don’t really push but I can’t expect them all to jump into every new game that comes along) that I began to wonder why I get into all these things and constantly expand the rules sets that I own. It all boils down to the world in which they are set. If I can get excited about that world then I am much more likely to want to spend time in it, much to the consternation of my friends no doubt. In short, I am those universes which is why I get so excited about this hobby.

I am 40k, I am Warhammer, I am Infinity, I am Malifaux, I am Immoren, I am Earth, I am the Uncharted Seas, I am the Storm Zone, I am all of these things and I am sure more will come along to tickle my fancy. I therefore apologise to my friends for my enthusiasm for finding these new worlds. Especially to our new players that must seem to think every time we meet up I have something new. To be honest though, as of right now, I think I have gone far enough, we already have more games than we can possibly play in a day. I’m going to try and keep to what we have now, especially when I have the least number of painted models of anyone I play with. Perhaps I need to rectify that before throwing myself into a new world.

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Enlightened Gaming


First of all I probably need to issue an apology. Since things went nuclear last weekend and the blog brought in a vast amount of traffic that our humble corner of the Internet is not normally privy to I have been sitting back and taking stock of what has unfolded. I have therefore been sat pontificating regarding exactly what I should post as a follow up. After all, I do hope that many of the people that found their way here for Servitob’s irreverent look at both games may choose to stick around and follow our observations of the gaming world as we go through life enjoying the hobby we have grown up with.

Now, let’s clear one thing up, Servitob’s post was not meant as a review of either game, we can all agree that such a short post is in no way comprehensive enough to adequately review one game let alone them both. It was more a comparison of how Servitob feels about both games and he does have experience of both. What I personally saw in those posts is both the best and worst of how the Internet operates. On the one hand we have the fact that Internet anonymity allows people to unite in a common cause. You don’t know if the chap at the other end of the DSL line is of the same race/creed or colour as you and yet, because those things aren’t visible the initial prejudice we sometimes feel towards those who are different is reduced to nothing in most areas. I am not dumb enough to make a sweeping generalisation that this is the case in all corners of the web, but from personal experience this is how I see things.
On the flip side to that we have the fact those seemingly innocuous comments can spark off emotions in people that see something they love is under attack. People jump to the defence of whatever it is they perceive to be in danger, even when it isn’t. Things are taken out of context due to the lack of emotion that can be present in the black and white of printed text.
I think it’s awesome that our hobby can engender in its participants this feeling of belonging, we have the communities based around our favourite games and we feel a part of those, such that when something we enjoy is seen to be berated by another a host of people jump up with torches and pitchforks to slay the metaphorical ogre. The problem here may be that just as the commenters are hidden behind the veil of Internet monikers and the associated anonymity that brings, so is Servitob. Apart from the other authors on this site you don’t know him, you are unaware of his history, his sense of humour or personality, I ascribe this as one of the reasons people felt the need to verbally (or literally) beat on him when he expressed his opinion. I reckon if you knew the man behind the Gravatar then we may have seen some different responses.

Do I have any hard feelings towards our new visitors from the Full Thrust community? No I don’t, I value their input and opinions as much as anyone else’s, they are entitled to them after all. However, I would hope that through such an amazing medium as the Internet we’d all be able to forego the usual human reaction of attacking things that don’t agree with our own standpoint and instead offering a well thought out and reasonable debate. History is littered with examples of humanity at its worst where differences of perception have led to the deaths of entire civilisations. Although these kinds of actions are what we sometimes re-enact for our pleasure (kind of perverse huh?) I don’t think any one of us would condone such actions. Who are we to judge one person of more worth than another, or one way of life of more worth?

Ask yourself if we are truly a more enlightened and worthy culture with our 9-5 office hours and KFC buckets than someone who lives in a hut with his family and farms the land to provide sustenance for those same people? Who has the more fast paced and stressful life?

Firestorm Armada Vs Full Thrust: The Internet Decides!


So a while back I wrote a post suggesting that I, the humble gamer, prefer playing the upstart and simple Firestorm Armada over the venerable and more complicated Full Thrust. Anyone would have thought I had taken a dump in the leader of the New Anglian Confederation’s hat! Looking at the fanboy / nerdrage responses from both sides over the last few days I am obviously in no position to make a judgement of such significance!

So it’s over to the Interwebs to decide.

We’ll even play a 6InchMove celebratory round of which ever game is the victor… so get your votes in. Polling closes in a week!

Original Blog Post: https://6inchmove.wordpress.com/2010/02/08/firestorm-armada-vs-full-thrust/

servitob Gets Noticed by http://theminiaturespage.com and http://www.stormconflict.com, Fame and Fortune Beckon!


Double punch, 6InchMove spambots!

Firstly, the revered site, theminiaturespage makes a news article on my post “Firestorm Armada vs Full Thrust”, and then out of nowhere the same post makes headlines at stormconflict!

I suppose this means I’ll have to stop goofing around and actually write something sensible, rather than just trying to entertain my regular readership of gribblin and ZombiePirateXXX!

The news stories can be found here:

http://theminiaturespage.com/news/284508/

http://www.stormconflict.com/2010/news/elsewhere-on-the-net/fsa-vs-full-thrust/

Firestorm Armada vs Full Thrust


Firestorm Armada or Full Thrust? Let Battle Commence!

Full Thrust is the grandaddy of space games. It’s been around for ages and you can now get the rules for free. Firestorm Armada is a relatively new offering and really owes a lot to it, especially the More Thrust version of Full Thrust. The whole dice rolling business of 4 and 5 is one hit, 6 counts as two hits and roll again, was a FT concept many years ago. What FA did to the mix though was to introduce damage and critical ratings. Thrust used to rely on damage charts where you would tick boxes. Armada did away with all the paperwork to make the game more straight forward. And I think this is a good thing.

Psychologically, Armada also trumps Thrust quite severely. It is a simple thing really, but in Armada you get to roll buckets of dice, which is exciting. In Thrust you only ever roll a few, which is not so exciting. Simple things please simple minds. In addition, Armada models are excellent. Thrust models are not so hot.

Strategically however, Thrust has an ace. All movement is preplanned and carried out simultaneously so you need to be paying attention to get your fleet into an advantageous position. Also, the physics of Full Thrust, while not perfect, is far more representative of space. If your super dreadnought keeps accelerating it will eventually be moving at 60″ per turn despite the fact that it should be a lumbering behemoth. This is actually what would happen in space, and requires extra skill and planning to make the most of. Unfortunately in the Firestorm Armada universe space is filled with custard which means that spaceships move in a way that is easy to comprehend, as it is similar to the way that ships sail in the sea.

Now then, if some bright spark could take Firestorm Armada and add the Full Thrust movement rules we would not only have a potential lawsuit, but also a slightly deeper strategic game. However, as it hasn’t happened yet, and would require some testing, we must choose one or the other. I choose Firestorm Armada. Because ultimately gaming is about fun, and Armada is just that. Not to say that Full Thrust isn’t… it’s just that Armada does it in a much more accessable way. The miniatures are easier to get hold of, the game itself is better promoted, and there is a decent fanbase (but that might just be dependant upon where I live). It’s a bit like Full Thrust is a kit car, and Firestorm Armada is a purple Nissan. Yeah sure, if you put the effort in the kit car is going to be splendid. But ultimately if you just want to cram your mates in to go down the chip shop then the Nissan wins every time.

Firestorm Armada Light Years Ahead


So I got my first outing with Firestorm Armada recently courtesy of nBreaker, and I must say, it really is very good. Quick, simple, with plenty of suitable opportunites to throw loads of dice, drink DPZ and smack talk. Pretty much a perfect game for the 6InchMove team then. The only improvement I could suggest is the addition of take away meals to fleet selection so we don’t all have to cram into gribblin’s car at lunch time. Oh well, you can’t have it all!

For those of you looking for more ‘beef’ in your posts, here comes the more serious intellectual bit… Firestorm Armada in my opinion is better than Uncharted Seas. Why? I don’t really know. Maybe the setting is more appealing. Maybe it’s pure shooting fun without all the hassle of boarding actions. Maybe the game just has more polish and balance.

More great intellectual analysis coming from servitob soon!