Monday, December 17, 2012


I read all the time. Pretty much anyone who knows me knows this. I read Cracked because the articles are often funny, but also because the articles are often insightful, or point out interesting factoids that I likely would never have found out otherwise.

Occasionally however, they post something that's a bit... more.

This is one of them. If I ever have children, this is what I would try my hardest to teach them.


Now if I can just manage to live it myself, I might even get the chance.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Woo! Another box sorted. I'm running out of space on my shelf though. I may have to start stacking some of the less-represented sets with each other...

Bluh, going through all of these cards sort of makes me want to play again. It also reminds me of why I moved from cards to miniatures.

See, back when I played magic, I would usually build decks based around a particular creature type or general theme. I really enjoyed building a narrative around my games. Imagining my armies of loyal soldiers grinding down my opponent via coordinated tactics, or my legions of knights rendered invulnerable by faith and courage. That underlying narrative was really what drew me into Magic in the first place, and it worked out pretty well at first, because that's how most of my friends played as well. Seeing all the old cards again brings back some of those memories.

Unfortunately, as time passed, decks became less about narrative or theme, and more about crushing combos. (aka, what M:TG is really about) That really soured it for me, and I stopped playing about half way through High School.

However, that's when I really started getting into miniatures games. The whole idea of each game having an underlying narrative was much stronger in miniature wargames than in Magic. The tiny drama's that unfold on the table top are a core element of the experience, and that's what really draws me to them to this day.

Anyway, Im going to keep trying for a box a day until I'm done. Then I guess I'll try to sort out the rares or something. Not sure how exactly I'm going to try and sell them yet. I'm hoping I can just get a decent offer for the whole pile from a local shop, but I worry that they will low-ball me a bit too hard. I'm not looking for top dollar or anything, but I would at least like to get an average of a few cents a card.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

So I have finally started sorting my magic cards by set, as I hope to sell them for some non-trivial amount of money. And hey, look at all the ones I sorted already! It didn't even take that long!

Now, lets just check to see how many more I have to gOH GOD.

Yea, this is gonna take a while. All those cards up there? That little empty spot in the box on the top left. That's how many that was -_-

Monday, March 19, 2012

Storm Lances!

So I got my order in from Spikeybits yesterday, and there it is assembled!

I got a second Hunter and a plastic Sentinel (which exemplifies everything I both love and hate about the new Privateer plastic kits) but more importantly, two boxes of Storm Lances!

Assembly wasn't too bad, though the lances themselves were all bent up, and the little pommel bits on the back were all bent un-recoverably. That wasn't that big of a deal however, since I had intended to extend the back part of the lances with pins anyway.

After getting them all assembled, I actually got a game in with Pat on our fancy new table.

He was playing a Grissel1 list with a Bomber, an Earthborn, an Impaler, Krielstone + UA, Janissa, and two full units of Champions. (blech)

I was playing an upscaled version of a Haley1 list that I had made as an anti-hordes counterpart to a Nemo1 list. My list was Haley1, a squire, Rowdy, Gunmages + UA marshaling two hunters, Viktor Pendrake, a Journeyman, Epic Eiryss, Laddermore, and 5 Storm Lances.

The scenario was Supply and Demand? I think? Anyway, it was the one where there is an objective in the middle of a12" zone on each side, and you score by controlling the objective on your side while contesting the zone on their side.

The terrain on the board was fairly heavy, and I was a bit concerned by my almost complete lack of pathfinder, but it ended up being much more of an issue for Pat's trolls.

I went first and ran pretty much everything but the journeyman, who put Arcane shield on Laddermore. Laddermore and the Lances ran up on my left flank to threaten Pat's zone, while everything else ran into my zone. Pat had his army run up similarly, with the Bomber across from my lances, and the Earthborn bearing down on Haley on my right. The Champions pretty much just formed a wall across the middle in front of the krielstone.

On my second turn, Haley put arcane shield on the storm lances and cast temporal barrier. The hunters took their shots at some champions, killing one and wounding another. The gun mages pushed the earthborn back a little, and pushed a few champions around as well. The storm lances and laddermore shuffled around a bit. Temporal Barrier put Pat on the back foot, and he didn't do much on his second turn. He moved the Earthborn closer, and his bomber threw some bombs at laddermore, only doing a few damage to her. The champions moved a little closer, but the unit that was moving to threaten my zone got bogged down on some ruins in the middle of the table.

On my third turn, Haley moved up for some better temporal barrier positioning, and re-cast it. Pendrake put beast lore on the gunmages, and the hunters continued to put shots into the champions, thinning their numbers slightly. The Storm Lances and Laddermore did a bit of a caracole with ride by attacks, putting a surprising amount of damage on the Bomber. The Gun mages pushed things around a bit more. Oh, and Eiryss moved up the right flank and shot Hallowed avenger off of the Earthborn. I also moved one of the Lances into Pat's zone, contesting it and getting me a point. Pat moved his champions up farther, and the Bomber charged the storm lance that was in the zone, killing it, barely. The Earthborn walked up to the hunter, and Rowdy counter-charged it (mistake on my part) doing pretty much nothing, and then the EB trashed Rowdy. However, that was pretty much it for pat's turn.

On my fourth turn, the Journeyman and Eiryss together killed Janissa, one of the hunters moved in between the remaining champions and shot the bomber for some damage. Pendrake put beast lore on the Gunmages again, and Haley cast TB, feated, and Threw a chain-lighting into the hunter that had moved up, zapping a few Krielstone bearers, and then shot a few more with her hand-cannon. The gunmages thunderbolted the pants off of everything, pushing the EB back quite a bit, and gunning down pretty much all of the stone bearers. The other Hunter put some damage onto Grissel, and the storm lances finished off the bomber, while laddermore killed a champion. I scored another point. Pat was pretty much down to one last gambit at this point, and it ended when the Earthborn was 7 and 3/4" away from Haley, instead of 7 and 1/2".

 Overall, I was really pleased with how the Storm Lances did. I definitely made some bone-headed mistakes, primarily not paying close enough attention to the EB's walking threat range. Pat got really bogged down by the ruins in the middle, and I think that how effective Temporal Barrier was really threw him off his game, since he wasn't familiar with it before hand.

Regardless, I am looking forward to getting in more games now that we have a table and terrain here at home!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Spanky Harrison here again after a long hiatus to bring you a review of the second book in the Ulrika the Vampire series: Bloodforged.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Back from Adepticon

I just returned from a trip to Chicago for Adepticon. I played in the Mid-war 1750 Flames of War tournament.

It was the worst tournament that I have ever been to. The first round started half an hour late, and they took the time out of our lunch. That by itself wasn't that big a deal, we just had to hurry and eat the overpriced and not that great hotel concessions and rush back. However, when we returned, we discovered that we had hurried through lunch so that we could sit around for half an hour while they did the paint judging. Awesome.

In addition, the terrain for the tournament was awful. Don't get me wrong, it looked great, but it was extremely frustrating to play on. My first game was on a desert board that had almost nothing that blocked LoS to vehicles, and 3 giant wadi's running the entire length of the table. In essence, this meant that my light tank company had to try and cross 3 bands of difficult terrain while being pretty much completely in the open. Luckily, my opponent's armored infantry were just as hampered, and I barely pulled out a victory.

My round 2 game was against an Italian light tank swarm on a city board. This board was 85% covered with huge ruined buildings, and the terrain was very frustrating to play on. My opponent was got to defend long-ways and that, combined with the terrain, pretty much neutralized any advantages I had. I lost that round.

Round 3 was on a board that was sharply divided by rivers, with only 2 bridges in pretty much the same location. The mission was breakthrough, and I somehow managed to muddle my way to victory. While my opponent was busy crushing my entire army, I managed to get my reserves onto the objective and shoot up the only platoon close enough to contest. Another victory.

The 1st day ended with all of us in low spirits.

Round 4 started with me fighting on another desert board with wadi's running the entire length. The mission was cauldron, and there was nothing to hide behind. The game pretty much consisted of all my stuff getting shot and dying for no gain without there really being anything I could do about it. Extremely frustrating.

Round 5 saw me playing the only fun game of the whole tournament against some panzer pioneers. The board was actually pretty reasonable, with some hills in the corners, and buildings in the middle. There was terrain to hide behind, but not so much that it was impossible to see anything. The mission was free for all, so that was a plus as well. Unsurprisingly to me, without the mission and terrain screwing me over at every turn, I completely crushed my opponent, losing only a handful of tanks, while nearly tabling his army.

Round 6 initially shaped up to be a real fight, until I made the critical mistake of engaging my opponent's forces. I exposed my tanks to take some shots at some of his stuff, and had my fighting strength completely crippled in his return fire for almost no gain. Awesome.

Anyway, despite winning half of my games, I still finished 31st out of 36, because the FoW victory point system is retarded. All of the terrain was EXTREMELY infantry-centric, and I feel like the TO may as well have just banned any vehicle capable of moving more than 8".

But whatever. Screw that game.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Ugh, SO LAZY ><

Wow, I really fell down on this one. Its been nearly 2 months. Ridiculous I say!

To be fair, I havent had much time to work with the Anima project lately, busy with papers for school and whatnot.

However, something else interesting has come along. You may or may not be familiar with Warlord, Reaper Miniatures fantasy skirmish game.

Well, during last years Reapercon, Mike managed to get a few copies of the 2nd edition play test rules. After reading them, we discovered that the rules as they were were pretty bad. Not necessarily in their function, but very much in their layout and presentation. In the few weeks that followed, we embarked on a desperate quest to create a feedback document that we could send in. We even asked Gus (the editor) to delay the publishing of the book, but that just wasn't possible. So we sent in what we had, and hoped for the best.

Well, the book got published, and it turns out that almost all of our changes were implemented! And though I don't want to sound too full of myself, I have to say that the book is massively better for it. Even better, I recently got to play a few games of the new edition, and its actually really fun! I wasn't actually much of a fan of 1st edition, but 2nd is definitely a huge improvement. While some of the improvements to the base rules are due to yours truly, the real thing that makes the game better is the total re-balancing of all the data cards, and I had nothing to do with that. So go Gus and Co.!

Aaaanyway, long story short, Gus recently contacted Mike and asked him if we would be interested in giving the rules another going-over for clarity. He also said that if we did, he would be able to give us something a bit better than "Playtester" in the credits! So super cool.

Now, after my first read-through, The rules themselves are pretty solid (as they should be, since that's the part I went through last time :P) but a few of the special abilities could still use some work. The real challenge here is that I cant actually recommend any changes to how anything actually works. That will make some of the SA's hard to cut down.

Regardless, I haven't given up on Anima! Quick re-cap on what still needs to be done:
  1. Need to figure out how Critical Hits will work.
  2. Combat can probably still be pared down and streamlined more.
  3. Should probly take another look at Characteristic checks.
That's all for now, I will try to be back sooner than 2 months this time :D