Wednesday, August 26, 2015

End of August, State of the "Hobby" for me...

My personal “State of the Hobby” for now… 

40K (and 30K I guess):  Honestly, I haven’t kept up with this one much…  Not a lot of “hobby time” over the summer, so the minis are still awaiting sorting/packing.  GW has not released much of anything 40K related as they were busy killing off WFB.  I have WAY too much stuff for this game, and it is filling the shelves in the Basement of Doom™…  My Marine armies are all quite good with the new book I understand.  I do not actually HAVE them, no GW purchases at all this year.  NOT saying that I support or am boycotting by any means, wanted to make that clear.  Just burned out and find the game(s) in their current state to be uninteresting to me.  Uninteresting in that Fantasy is dead and my armies simply no longer exist.  Yes, I can play “Kings of War” when it comes out and assuming that anyone local plays it.  Meh.  So, my Wood Elves are still awaiting stripping and repainting as I painted MANY of them in the late 80’s and they are really poorly done :-)..  So, they along with their High Elves brothers are already packed up or staged to be packed away…  My 40K stuff?  In my sorting I am finding even more things than I remember having, and it is a bit discouraging knowing I will not enjoy playing the modern game.  Pretty sure I have 5 Land Raiders of various types, some 25+ Rhino hulls of various loadouts…  My DA army alone has 30+ Terminator class suits, so I could field their First Company almost complete at any given time…  Wolves?  Yeah, WAY too many of those…  I never bought their “Wolf Cavalry” as I just found the idea alone to be “bad” (avoiding the term “stupid”, but…)…  Eldar?  Well, I can tell you the age of most of them by saying that the overwhelming bulk of the Aspect Warriors I have are actually lead…  Picked up a BUNCH when GW went from lead to pewter and clearance off the existing stock of lead minis.  The resin vehicles are all pre GW having ANY vehicles for them as well, except of course for the War Walkers which went from “un-killable monsters” to “use in squadrons of 3 because they die so quickly”…  Sadly I DO have “a few” of them, all old metal minis…  But back on subject, WAY too much stuff, in the process of being shelved for the foreseeable future.

STAW:  Star Trek Attack Wing is picking back up and we are blazing through the OP events to get caught up from the 6+ month “dead time” when various players just quit the game altogether and WizKids had pretty well killed off the game with incredibly STUPID rules, releases and card combos.  Sadly, they still exist in a lot of ways so this game I have to admit is still sliding a bit for me…  The way we play locally it is a fun and balanced game, but having just played the “No Holds Barred” builds at Gen Con?  No, WizKids still has a VERY poorly written game with things like those stupid Borg mines “attacking” outside of the “combat phase” allowing no normal defenses or even things like Cloak?  REALLY badly written, and it was stupidity like that which killed the game the first time at the Gopher for us…  So, fun, and I’m still picking up the ships for “my” factions (Federation, Klingon and Romulan) because we’re still having a lot of fun here…  So, still playing and enjoying but the game itself has the feeling of stagnation from the manufacturer…  So, I’m not really confident it will exist in a year…

D&D AW: Much better than STAW in terms of balance, but just too much stuff coming out too quickly I think...  For me at least of course :-)  NOT a bad game, but I guess I am having a harder time getting too excited about it with the feeling of the standard WizKids "throw out a BUNCH of stuff, collect as much $ as possible then let the game die off" feel to it...  Being D&D maybe it will be different, but...

X-Wing:  REALLY interesting times….  Their Wave 7 has/is hitting, and there are a number of things changing in the meta because of it…  Combined with the leaked “V2” starter and the Episode VII ships in it?  New Damage Deck, New X-Wings and TIE Fighters…  Models look the similar, but the X-Wing gets a native Boost action, the Ties get Shields, etc…  New abilities and cards, etc…  Along with the announced Wave 8 stuff and the Star Wars: Rebels ships?  Guessing this is where the bulk of my near future purchases will be.  Albeit not THAT much really when compared to say, 40K…  The Starter will be ~ the same cost as a single 40K book, and the ships themselves are in the single mini price range…  From a purely “do I enjoy playing the game” perspective, I have to say this is my current “go to” game.  Deceptively simple, but that is why it really works so well I think.  Nothing so overpowering as you find in STAW, and FFG actually IS concerned about that silly “balance” thing.  Big tournament coming up in a few weeks, so trying out a few builds, might have to get Vassal set back up to run tests against folks online…  But in general, I am REALLY enjoying this game so far.  The fact that it has such a large local following I think is an excellent sign…  That and frankly, even when I am not winning, it never really feels like I lost in the “army building” stage or before with my choice of army simply being “lower” on the power totem pole…  Yes, I stubbornly played some armies at times that were perceived to be “weak” just to prove a point or get better at the game myself by doing so, but in a real competition I never would bring such a force…  Yes, I could build a silly force in X-Wing, but honestly, even those are not without merit and could at least stand against some builds.  There IS a very real series of hard(ish) counters in X-Wing like Rock-Paper-Scissors, but even that is not a guarantee of course with it being a dice game.  The Swarm builds do very well against a lot of things, but die to others, etc…  My Twin Laser Turret (TLT) builds will do well against a lot, but I think will not be so successful against the Swarms…  Just not enough damage output…  So, I am building more of a hybrid build for the most part with a few TLT ships and either a Bomber (K-Wing) or another “Big” ship (Aggressor/Firespray/YT) to provide a deterrent against someone simply rushing up to the Range 1 “weapon dead zone” the TLT has or trying to overwhelm my squadron with numbers.  Not sure how successful it will be, but it will at least be fun to play, and as the old Y-Wing was always my favorite Fighter from that universe…  Glad to get to field more of them without feeling like I am playing at a disadvantage…


Pretty sure that a viable “Star Wars” game was always one of the things GW knew would be the death of 40K…  Mind, X-Wing and 40K are very different games, and until a “ground combat” game gets released in the SW universe setting, not really thinking there is direct competition, but…  In a completely unscientific glance at the 2 remaining Game Stores locally, one carries NO GW product at all, and the other the GW space seems to be shrinking with fewer new toys coming out and guessing they are stuck with some things from previous editions as the release schedule for 40K was REALLY frantic for a while there, and those expensive hardback books getting an annual replacement is just not really in my budget at least…  Yes, first world problems, I know…  Not being shot at anymore, so every day like that is a good one, I’m living in the “bonus time”, etc…