20 April 2014

Easter double-header match

On Easter Saturday, the Man Cave hosted a double header set matches for round 2 of our Rookie League Season.  Right Stuff's Sherthor Scorchers faced off against the Chaos team Fatal Femmes, while my own Chaos Dwarf team, the Darkland Decimators, played the Dark Elf Team of the Century.  On a lovely Autumn afternoon we played side by side on the balcony, and good fun it was!

Sherthor Scorchers VS Fatal Femmes
Right Stuff reports: The first half started with me kicking to the chaos scum and a quick two turn turn over with me scoring. 1-0. I kick to him again, 3 turn turnover and I score.Half ends with me up 2 nil but I have 3 players in the Cas box.

Second half starts with quick sideline fence off play, as I set the score at 3-0 with 6 turns to go. I kick to him and I am losing numbers at this point; I only have 6 players on pitch about now and my defensive setup was pretty pathetic with me running out of lineman. The first thing he does this drive is kill my thrower but the apothecary with his medicinal magic managed to just bring him back but he will still be injured until after the next game. Then the casualties start rolling and he scores. 3-1.   The then turned me over as I only have 4 players left and leaves me with one player, my newly strength boosted catcher at the end of the drive and scores again with 1 turn to go. 3-2. As I cannot bring any of my KO's back before the games it ends at 3-2. A win to the elves but with 8 casualties for the chaos worshiping filth - next game I'll have 4 journeymen!
On the bright side, the only lasting Elf injuries were two AV busted linemen
Result: 3-2 Win to the Scorchers despite an 8-0 casualty count for the Femmes: ouch!

Darkland Decimators VS Team of the Century
Kicking off to the Dark Elves, the game started well for the Chaos Dwarves after a few early casualties (including my first ever foul action, using a hobgoblin) to get a player advantage.  I then managed to turn over the Dark Elves and score on them then hold out to be 1 nil up at half time.  The second half started equally well and I was 2 nil up with just 4 turns to play.  A place any coach should be confident, right?

The Dark Elves scored on me in two turns with some impressive moves and all I had to do was hold out 2 turns for a win.  Then I got a touchback, put the ball into a Bull Centaur's hands and galloped him up to go for the extra SPPs and see him skill up after the game.  Nuffle did not not approve of my greediness and tripped up the bull - despite me having sacked the only player in range to score.  The Dark Elves then pulled off an impressive array of ball pickup, multiple dodges (some into tackle zones), sprints, a handoff in a tackle zone, and a long bomb to get a turn 8 equalizer and grab the draw.  Frustratingly impressive - you have to hand it to any coach who can pull that off all without any re-rolls in the hand!  Still, I walked away with a draw and you cant complain about that :-)
Bull Centaur Baron Burzak only narrowly avoided being sacrificed in the Locker Room after the match...
Result: 2 all draw, Casualties 3-1 to the Decimators

It was a lot of fun playing with another match going on next to you - thanks to James and Matthew for enjoyable afternoon!

Post Game Management

The Scorchers had a Catcher skill up after making 2 TDs, taking the safe but reliable Dodge skill.

The Decimators had a Bull centaur skill up with Block, and Chaos Dwarf skill up with a double to take a second Claw skill on the team.  I think that Claw is one of those skills you can overdo, but having a second one on the team means its harder for the opposition to isolate or remove.  I dont' think I'll take any more though and want getting Prehensile Tail for future mutations to go with the Tackle the Chaos Dwarves come with: I think that could have great synergy.

As a result of this Second round, the league ladder looks thus and I was most surprised to see I'm in in second place by number of TDs, and with the league's violent player with 3 casualties in 2 games.

pointsTD scoreCas score
Big Pete
403 - 16 - 3
Darkland DecimatorsChaos Dwarf
Paul O´G
304 - 35 - 2
Surf n TurfKhorne
303 - 22 - 2
Team of the CenturyDark Elf
Matthew R
303 - 22 - 7
Sherthor ScorchersElf
Right Stuff
244 - 41 - 9
Brutomax BrootsOrc
242 - 26 - 1
Lords of DamnationChaos
Simon M
242 - 10 - 5
Peter M
142 - 32 - 5
Fatal FemmesChaos
James H
82 - 58 - 0
Gargoth GargoylesChaos Dwarf
Andrew O
80 - 25 - 3

18 April 2014

Happy Easter and a Poll

I hope you all have a great break with your families and enjoy some quality Hobby time too!  I'm sure the odd bit of chocolate wouldn't go amiss either!

In the wake of the painting challenge I've been pondering a new gaming genre to get into.  I've done a lot of 28mm skirmish type gaming in recent years, from Blood Bowl, to Dark Ages and SAGA, to Bolt Action and Chain of Command.  I'm still enjoying all of those, but am feeling an itch for more 'grand tactical' gaming with Brigades and Higher Command and Control challenges.

I've put up a poll on the left hand side of the blog, with a few genres which interest me, some for a long period, but which I've not before delved into. I'd be interested in your thoughts and suggestions, not only on what genre but also what rules to look at. Feel free to add other ideas or suggestions in the comments section too.

Thanks and Happy Easter!

15 April 2014

Blood Moon

If you look up tonight (here in Australasia anyway), you will see that the Gods are angry with us. The harvest may be affected, and sacrifices may be required to appease their terrible wrath.
Some heretics have suggested that the moon’s orangey-red appearance this week is due to a syzygy — or a perfect alignment of three celestial bodies — of the sun, the Earth and the moon.  They were the first to be sacrificed to the angry Gods.
I have interpreted this event to be a sign for me to return to the Man Cave and paint more Dark Ages figures while drinking a horn or two or ale...

Aussies can best view the eclipse:
Adelaide: Moon rises at 5.48pm; eclipse ends at 7.03pm
Brisbane: Moon rises at 5.27pm; eclipse ends at 7.33pm
Darwin: Moon rises at 6.41pm; eclipse ends at 7.33pm
Hobart: Moon rises at 5.33pm; eclipse ends at 7.33pm.
Melbourne: Moon rises at 5.49pm; eclipse ends at 7.33pm
Sydney: Moon rises at 5.28pm; eclipse ends at 7.33pm
Perth residents will unfortunately be unable to view the phenomenonbecause you are all damned to wander the Afterlife without Hope anyway. 
Dont blame me, its your fault for living on the other side of the country.

12 April 2014

New Blood Bowl teams make their appearance

The new season of our local Blood Bowl league kicked off this week with a Dad vs Lad faceoff!  Starting new teams in the Rookies Division, the lad fielded his new Pro Elf team, the Sherthor Sorchers, against my new and not quite so resplendent Chaos Dwarf team, the Darkland Decimators.  To make it even better, we borrowed Comrade Jame's fantastic pitch.  I won the toss and elected the receive in the good weather, hoping to grind some elves into pitch paste early.

Which is exactly what didn't happen. The ball dropped right on my backline where a hobgoblin failed to pick it up on turn one, even with a re-roll, and then showed identically dazzling ineptitude the next turn despite using another reroll.  Right Stuff had no such trouble and his elf catcher sprinted through the lines to pickup the ball in a tackle zone and score after just two turns.  Not an auspicious start for me.

Resetting for another drive, I managed to get the ball into a Bull centaur's hands and bash my way upfield, where he got crowded in and lost the ball.  A hobbo scuttled in though and managed to squeek over the line to level the score with a few turns to go in the first half.  

The next kickoff saw a Throw a Rock! event, which managed to badly hurt a player from each team.  Sadly, Right Stuff lost a Lineman while I lost a Bull Centaur.  It was going to be a tough second half.  This was where Nuffle decided to take an interest in me and I started to finally take some elves off the pitch.  Mostly KOs, but two injuries, one an Armour busted lineman who the elf apothecary attended, and an Elf Catcher badly hurt.  However, I got the player advantage, managed to sack the elf ball carrier and got the ball into a Bull centaur's hands.  Gleefully bashing his way upfield, he scored to take the Chaos Dwarves up 2-1 and leaving the pointy ears just two turns to equalise.
However, Nuffle ignored Right Stuff's pleas and demonstrated that even Elves can fail a dodge roll or two, to give the Decimators a win in their inaugural game. 

Post game management saw an Elf catcher skill up with a surprising Strength boost - as a 4AG 4ST player with no negative traits, he will no doubt become the bain of the league soon.  In the meantime, I had a Chaos Dwarf skill up, rolling doubles to take a mutation - Claws!  I also bought an apothecary with my winnings and am now saving up for the 6th Chaos Dwarf.

The Man Cave will be hosting the Round Two matches over Easter, with both our opponents simultaneously in a double header match-  should be a hoot!

09 April 2014

More Trees

...because you can never have enough really!  An orchard, some medium trees and a shrubbery!

04 April 2014

Forest base

About a year ago I got around to basing some trees that I had kicking about (see here).  I was pretty happy with this result, until I went to usee them and realised I had no base terrain for them to be placed on and clearly mark the wood edge.  So I got around to knocking one up recently, out of a bit of scrap mdf.

I deliberately made it without anything that make it scaled - so its equally useful in different scales adjusting the tree size.

03 April 2014

We wants one precious

New from 4Ground for Salute -  little more affordable than the lovely resin Great Hall that appeared at last year's Salute!


The full farmstead set is pretty nice too:


01 April 2014

Drop bears inhabit closed canopy forest in the south-east of Australia. 

Drop bears are less likely to attack people with Australian accents, according to experts at the University of Tasmania.

DROP BEARS TARGET PEOPLE with foreign accents more often than those who are Australian-born, according to new research.
The study, conducted in a drop-bear hot-spot in New South Wales, aimed to gather data around the behaviour and ecology of the elusive species.
There has been relatively little scientific research into the drop bear (Thylarctos plummetus), which the Australian Museum describes as a "large, arboreal, predatory marsupial related to the koala." Populations are thought mainly to exist in forested coastal regions of eastern and southern Australia, stretching from the Cape York Peninsula to Tasmania.

Tracking drop bear behaviour

Dr Volker Janssen, a research associate at the University of Tasmania, led a research team into Morton National Park, 120km south-west of Sydney, in search of drop bears.
Given that ordinary GPS tracking is difficult to apply to tree-dwelling animals, Volker came up with a new approach to study the animal’s behaviour. “It involves tracking the prey, rather than the predator. The location and timing of attacks is then used to map the animal population,” he says.
Members of the research team were tracked using GPS devices, and dispersed in the study area. The findings, published in the journal Australian Geographer, have revealed that six drop bears inhabit the study area.
"Drop bears are known to be very territorial," says Volker. "They do not stray far from a relatively small number of trees in close proximity that are used as hunting ground."

Australians less likely to suffer attacks from drop bears

In a second study sample, a number of Australian-born research assistants were monitored and their data compared to that of assistants of international descent. Statistically, the results suggest that people born in Australia are significantly less likely to be attacked by drop bears.

Credit: Volker Janssen
“The analysis has provided valuable insights into the animal’s hunting behaviour,” Volker told Australian Geographic. “It has been confirmed that foreigners are much more likely to be dropped on than Australians.”
Volker attributes this selective behaviour to a number of factors, the most significant of which relates to Australian people’s taste for Vegemite.
“By-products of the interaction between chemicals found in Vegemite and those found in human sweat repel drop bears,” Volker says. “Most Australians eat Vegemite at least once a day, so they permanently exude these chemicals through their skin and are thus protected.”
Drop bears are also thought to be able to discern Australian accents, and seem to be less likely to attack people who have them.

How to avoid drop bears

“While drop bears are now not as common as they used to be, there have been many sightings of them over the years, mainly by bushwalkers hiking off the beaten track,” Volker says.
According to previous studies, drop bears hunt by ambushing ground-dwelling animals from above. Once prey is within striking range, he says, the drop bear will plummet several metres out of the tree, skilfully latching onto the neck of its victim.
“Drop bears do not specifically target human beings, but there have been several cases where bushwalkers have fallen victim to drop bear attacks, resulting in serious lacerations and even death.”
Volker suggests several methods bushwalkers can adopt to defend against potential drop bear attacks. These include wearing forks in the hair, spreading Vegemite behind the ears or under the armpits, and even urinating on oneself, to deter the species.
Further study may raise awareness for the species, which is believed to be in decline.
"The drop bear is a peculiar and uniquely Australian animal," says Volker. "A better understanding of behaviour and ecology will allow us to ensure that a sustainable population is maintained by enhancing conservation efforts."
Find more information about the habits and ecology of drop bears, as well as a distribution map here on the site of the Australian Museum.
Volker says he hopes his journal article is a useful discussion of GPS/GNSS techniques in ecology, and also an example for students of how to put together a research paper.

28 March 2014

Dux Brit: The Raiders

If you've been head down, bum up busy with the last weeks of the painting challenge and unwanted 1:1 scale modelling projects like me (stupid laundry...) you too may have missed the news from Lard Island that the first supplement for Dux Brittaniarum, The Raiders, will be released at Salute next month!

From the Lard Island Blog:

Great news for Dux Britanniarum fans who are attending Salute is that The Raiders supplement covering the Irish, Scotti and Picts will be released at Britain’s premier wargaming event in the heart of London’s docklands.

This long awaited supplement won’t just include the addition of the three new and exciting factions for Dux Britanniarum, but will also provide two beautiful new maps over which to fight your campaigns covering modern Ireland and Scotland. Once again the stunning artwork has been produced by Coral Sealey and we’re sure you’ll agree that they really set the tone for a campaign in the Age of Arthur.

The will to game in Arthurian Britain grows stronger in this Man Cave..

27 March 2014

A Dux of a plan

Aficionados of this Man Cave blog may recall that last year I was subjected to unethical coercion by Comrade James when he bought me the British Army book for Bolt Action last year...when he knew I didn't have any figs or the core rules, yet.  Clearly, I folded like a deck of cards and got into the game.

Now Alan aka Dux Homunculorum himself has taken a leaf out of this evil book of persuasion, sending me the Dux Bellorum rulebook from the sale at War and Peace Games when he knew I was trying to be good and resist such temptations.  A gamer can only take so much, or maybe its just me?

It isnt fair really, and lovely eye candy it is too....

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