Sunday, April 27, 2014

'Dem Bones

During my stay in the main hall, I decided to work on the Fire Giantess as an example for all three classes.  The hope was that the students could watch me paint it here and there in the main hall and see the practical application of what we would be doing.

First up was the basing.  I wanted to incorporate some bark that had been generously given to me earlier that day.

Bark on cork.  I loved the textures that it offered on the top surfaces if the rocks!

Good old Oxide Paste!  It helped to hold in all of the tree bark, and fill in any gaps.

Lunch was provided every day, which was a big help.  It was not too heavy, but with enough oomph to get you through an afternoon class!  Babo approved, especially the cookie.

On the base, and now primed.  I then primed the additional miniatures for the Shaded basecoat class so it could dry.

The first layers of fluorescent paint.  This was something that got the attention of a lot of people in the main hall, as I had hoped.  By demonstrating a practical example using the paints, it was easier to convince the viewers that these paints could indeed fulfill that role nicely!

A few more layers...

Babo also lent a hand after eating the cookie.

Priming the additional Karungs...

Babo drew a WANTED sign for cookie theft!

Reapercon adventure and the Knights of the Round Table

So, early Wednesday morning, the adventure began.  Rich was kind enough to drive me over to the airport early in the morning, which was a massive help!

Looking down at Wappelville during the vertical takeoff required by all planes at Midway :-)

A stowaway seems to have found their way on board!  IceBatMan!

In the main ballroom.  Dealer's area, announcement stage, and a huge area for people to set up their paints and so on.  Power was supplied to each of the tables so that lights could be used.  A lot of work to get that all up an running.

There was a Murder's Row of staff and instructors set up along the wall, so that people could come up and ask questions, etc.

Babo quickly took charge, and set up the bases on the table.  I have spent many hours working down in this room all weekend.

One of the Shaded Basecoat classes.  As always, fear, shock and horror reigns supreme at the start.  Quickly, however, the victims (aka students), begin to adapt and seize onto the concept.  Eventually, they incorporate the process into their own painting collective.

Each of the 12 painters who participated in the two classes created new and interesting color combinations as we worked on "paint flow charts" on the palettes.  This was quite the opposite of everything they had been accustomed to, so it was wild to see the process of transformation take place in about 90 minutes!

Each person did a different flesh tone, and treated other areas of the mini in ways I would never have thought of, which was fantastic!

Typically, you learn as much from the people taking the class as they learn from you.  This was certainly the case in all three classes so far.  Just one more to go!
A big thank you to all who took part in the shocking Madness!!!

Notes from the front

Here are a few in-game action shots from a recent Memoir '44 session.  I am playing the Germans, and six objective point are required for a win.

Since you switch sides after each game, it behooves you to watch very closely what happens to the other side during the game.  You also want to establish as big a lead as possible in the first game, so you have the opponent taking as many chances as possible to make up the gap in that second game.

The action is card based, in the form of orders. The battlefield is divided into three areas... left, center and right.  You can see by my cards that each one lets me move a certain number or type of unit in a specific zone.  You have to be careful... just because you have a bunch of orders early on that let you press an action in a certain area, there is no guarantee that you will have more cards later to continue that actions.

I was fortunate to have the kind of order cards that would allow me to move across all areas of the board.  We had also instituted the rule of command cars, which let you move one additional unit in that area.  I used that to great effect on my right flank.

The attack continues to be pressed, in spite of some casualties.  I have managed to wipe out his long range threats, which is letting me go forward without losing entire units.  With my own long range artillery intact, he has to be careful how far out in the open he goes to respond to the attacks.

I allow the tanks and paratroopers on the left flank to take some losses, as I surge towards the town in the rear of his lines on the right flank.  If I can wipe out the unit defending it, and capture it this turn, I can claim the two final objectives I need!

It is important that this happens now, since I have a number of units at low strength.  If he has any kind of sweeping battlefield orders, he could pick those off and make the game much closer.

Success!  Victory achieved, and a 6-2 conquest.  The Tiger tank finishes off the last of the hapless GI's defending it, and the elite troops march into town!

Now for the fun part... playing the other side!  Knowing that I only needed to get 3 victory points for the overall win, I did not have to be as aggressive as I was with the German side.

You can see my order cards here.  I was desperate to get the troops that were lined up against the board edge out of the way, so that the dreaded turn one air power card would not force me to flee in terror off the board!

Wouldn't you know it... the FIRST card played was the air power.  I was fortunate that the rolls did not go more against me, and I did not lose even more vital elements of my force (or give up more free victory points!).

However, I had the Barrage card, which wiped out the command cars!  That would prove to be the most devastating blow of the game.

As I mentioned before, I could let the Germans come to me a bit more, since they had a lot of VP's to make up.  This allowed me to set up some traps.  I also tried to maneuver as many forces as possible into the areas for which I had the most orders, or to get the on the red line hexes.

Units placed there count as being in both areas, which is huge!

You can see I have done this with a few units.  The idea was to set up one unit for destruction.  I only needed to take down one more, and it would be impossible for the Germans to get the points needed to force a third game.

Rich was able to make a lot of headway on the left flank, capturing that town.  He was unable to wipe out a few units, however.

Things were actually getting much closer.  He had been able to move enough units into place to threaten a few units that had previously taken hits.

However, I was able to knock off that last unit, giving me three victory points!  At that point, my total VP's had assured me the win.

This is very fast paced, and it is a lot like poker.  You don't know what your opponent has in front of him.  You can hang onto certain 'response' cards that will allow you to repeat his order, which is good to save if he has something nasty!

We continue to learn new things all the time as we test out more scenarios and units.

It will also be much more interesting when everything is painted!!