Monday, January 1, 2018

Thoughts and Ideas for 2018

It is time once again to wipe the hobby slate clean and get ready for a new year of hobby goodness.  My Christmas holiday time off has really helped me clear my head and refocus on what I want from the hobby.  The theme for the coming year will be simplification.  I really need to simplify my hobby and refocus on those things I truly love and not get distracted by all the shiny new stuff that seems to be constantly popping up.  Nice idea but it may not be that simple...

Games Workshop

I have been a 20+ year  GW customer, starting with the original Necromunda in the 90s and moving into Gorka-Morka, Mordhiem, Warhammer Fantasy Battles, Warhammer 40,000 and Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle game.  I have really had lots of great times with GW products but a few years back they seemed to be on a mission to destroy themselves.  They did such a good job that I basically stopped playing their games and collecting their models completely.  Several of my friends went a step further and sold off most of their GW stuff, never expecting to go back to it.

Well all that has changed and 2017 was the year that GW pulled me and several of my friends back in.  I really like many of their new products and releases and their models are better than ever.  The new versions of Warhammer 40K and Necromunda Underhive really were the hooks that reeled me back in.

How does this fit the theme?  Easy!  I still have 5 40K armies painted and ready to go.  Last year I bought the new rules and a couple of the army books.  I basically can play this game with no significant investment of time or money.  I am sure this year I will buy more codex books and I am sure some model releases will get my attention but basically I am ready to go.  I plan on this being a well played game this year.  Simple.

Necromunda Underhive will be slightly more complicated.  I have no immediate plans to play this game but I do plan to purchase all the releases this year and build and paint models as the inspiration strikes.  I actually think I will play more Shadow War Armageddon as this game has more interest from my friends and can be used as an entry game for getting 40K collections started.  For me the simplicity is in the fact that I have several bands ready to go and lots of models collected for additional bands.  This should see the table a lot.

I expect that 2018 will be a big year for my return to GW gaming and I am actually excited about that.

Horse and Musket Era

This is a game era that has been dominated by the Black Powder rules and the American Civil War and this will continue for 2018.  The main struggle I have had over the years with this is the need for huge armies and huge tables for the games we have been playing.  I already have one of these huge games scheduled for March so I am not planning to stop playing that type of game.  What I need to do, however, is find ways to play smaller games so I can get this on the table more than once this year.

In addition to the American Civil War I have a really strong need to play the Napoleonic era with these rules.  This is something I have had in the works for many years now but 2018 needs to be the year I make a serious push to get this going.

How does this fit the theme?  This is another game/era that I have extensive collections of models ready for paint as well as huge armies of painted miniatures.  There is really very little in the way of purchases needed to do more ACW or Nappy gaming.  Most of the work is around painting stuff I have already bought and that is pretty simple.  The recent Black Powder supplements for ACW and the Russian Napoleonic campaign are really helpful items and I will be looking at some wargaming scenario books to help with planning games but I really don't need to do much in the way of model purchases.  If I can get in 3-4 games this year I will be very happy but I think I can do better than that.

World War II Gaming

This is still my favorite gaming period.  The last couple years have been a struggle with all the rules changes with my favorite game as well as the loss of interest with some of my friends.  We did get Bolt Action (1st Edition) on the table several times last year.  Tom and I have been experimenting with the Battlegroup rules using our Flames of War 15mm collections.  These games have been lots of fun.  As you may know I am not a big fan of the Flames of War v4 rules.  I think I have come to the realization that I will not be moving to the new edition and I will continue to play v3 and use the old army books.  I have had a history of not staying with old versions of rules once a new edition has been released.  Most of the time this means playing the new game and all is well.  But in some instances this has meant that I stop playing the game completely.  I can't really explain why this has been the case but I think I have gotten over this.  I want to play games and I no longer want a game company to dictate to me how I play my games.  I like BA 1st edition and FoW v3 so that is what I will be playing for the most part.  Battlegroup will see more table time this year and I am looking forward to that.

How does this fit with the theme?  I own almost everything I need for WWII gaming so I don't need to buy much of anything.  I will be investing in the Battlegroup books and filling in the holes in my FoW book collections.  As for models I have several 15mm projects in process and PILES of additional models.  For 28mm I have companies of painted figures for several armies. I also have a 28mm US Marine force to finish painting. I can see some 28mm tank models in my future but I really don't need much.  This is another area that is ready to play. I just need to get off my butt and play.

Dark Age Gaming

SAGA is king for this era.  I really love this game and I see much more of it in the future.  There is a new version coming out this year and I plan to buy it and try it out.  But in light of my new attitude towards new version of rules, if I don't like the new version I will just keep playing the first edition.  For big battle gaming I expect to play some Hail Caesar and Kings of War Historical.  My friend Joe has been on a model buying and model painting tear for months and really wants to do some big Dark Age battles similar to our big Black Powder games.  I am really looking forward to doing this and I have lots of stuff to add to the battle.

How does this fit with the theme?  I know I am starting to get a little repetitive, but I have lots of stuff for these games and this period so I don't really need to buy large numbers of models or books to play.  For SAGA I actually have several armies in process - Anglo-Saxon, Rus, Arab and I am collecting stuff for a dedicated Norman army.  This is an area where I can get lots of hobby activity by just working on projects I have.

Fantasy Gaming

I have been having a lot of fun with this in the last year.  Tim and I got in several games of Frostgrave and they were all a blast.  I managed to collect all the supplements and I collected and painted a lot of figures and terrain.  I also got in some Kings of War games earlier in 2017 and we actually had a campaign going for a while.  I would love to get some more of that going this year.

How does this fit with the theme?  As with so may items on this list it is all about using stuff I already have and I have lots of stuff for both Kings of War and Frostgrave.  This is an area that might be hard for me to not make things a little more complicated.  Going with my idea of more GW games I have really been thinking about Armies of Sigmar lately.  It is quite possible that Kings of War becomes my historical mass battle game but AoS becomes my go to fantasy mass battle game.  I am not really sure yet but I must say the GW models are irresistible.  In the end I think Frostgrave will be the real focus and I will continue to add models for that game.

Miscellaneous Stuff

This is an area where the distractions can get out of hand.  I expect that this year will continue to see games of Warhammer Quest and probably some Space Hulk but this is really just an extension of my GW gaming so no big deal.  I will play a few games of Blood Bowl this year but that is also GW stuff.

I will be putting some work into CAV: Strike Operations this year.  I have several models in painting process and I will get these finished soon.  This is a game that I have very little invested in and if I wanted more stuff it is cheap and easy to get.  This will never be a major focus for me but it is good stompy robot fun.

The new Fallout miniature game will be a major distraction that I will have to resist.  I LOVE Fallout and the idea of a miniature game set in this world is almost irresistible to me.  I will try.  The good news is it is not cheap so that will help to keep me away.

Another potential distraction is the Star Wars Legion game.  I love the Star Wars of the original movies and I have always wanted to play a miniature set in those movies.  Well it is coming and I really don't want to get into it.  I must be strong.

I am sure I will get in some games of TANKS this year.  It is a fun game and I have lots of stuff for it already.  I will be buying some of the desert stuff this year.

Stuff that is Going Away

OK this is stuff that I am just not going to play.  I might be selling off the stuff as well but that is not really the point.  First up is Infinity.  I really LOVE the models and the setting for this game.  I spent a lot of money a couple of years ago on this and I had grand ideas of this being my main skirmish game.  Sadly I have only played one small game and I have not painted anything.  I even tried to sell off my collection last year but no one was interested.  I am officially done with this game.  I will probably keep the stuff but it is off the list.

Wings of Glory is another game that I love the idea of but just don't have enough time or interest to make into a regular thing.  I think I played it once last year and not much more than that the year before.  I will likely keep it but I will not even think about playing or adding stuff for it.

X-Wing has jumped the shark.  I have not played in more than a year and maybe closer to 2 years.  I tried to sell off the collection last year but a collection of the first few generations of models is not in much demand.  Many of the models are in my display case because they look cool.  I would probably sell it if I could find a buyer but I am not looking.

Blogs and Social Media

The good news is this blog is not going anywhere.  I need to find a more efficient way to post updates but I have no idea if that is even possible.  I really wish it was as easy as Facebook or Twitter.  For the time being I will continue to use Twitter but if blogging was easier I would just move all that in progress stuff to the blog and just drop Twitter.  Facebook will likely be the main source of hobby related activity but I want to get back to using and reading the forums.  Forums are just a better way of communicating stuff like this and we, as hobbyists, control this by what we choose to use.


There you have it, proof that I think too much about stuff that is just not that important.  Oh well, I enjoy it.  I am actually feeling pretty good about my ideas for the new year and I am going to really work to keep this focus.  I will definitely have fun no matter what.


Tom O said...

Well said. I'm really at the same point with several things...GW pulling me back in, sticking with FOW V3 and Bolt Action 1st edition, waiting to see how the new edition of SAGA is, and trying to figure out what to do for fantasy gaming...I can't lie, Age of Sigmar has been looking interesting...

Mike G. said...

Great post. Age of Sigmar is a great game. Like 8th edition 40k, you can play as small or large of a game as you want and it works There are enough similarities and differences between AoS and 40k that learning both sets of rules is not hard. Furthermore, the Age Of Sigmar skirmish rules are pretty fun and let’s you have a solid game with 6-30 models.

Mike G. said...

I forgot to mention that I’m glad to read your blog is not going away. While I don’t post many comments or play in the shop as much as I used to, I still read all the blogs from our group and enjoy them. On a selfish note, it makes me feel involved.

I’d love to try out tanks this year.

Robert said...

Thanks for the comments!

Dean Vuckovich said...

I may not comment much, but glad the blog is staying... I enjoy reading your posts and see whats going on back in AZ.