Reaper is at it again.

Their bones miniatures, which are really good, are back on Kickstarter. This brings me both joy and sadness. I like the idea of getting some more models, but do the really need another Kickstarter?

I like the concept of Kickstarter. It is a unique way of getting direct to user funding, breaking the traditional model of investment funding. Why should any concept be tied to the stodgy tried and true concepts others have tried? Investors are notoriously closefisted with their money and generally unwilling to jump for new ideas. I like that it gets novel ideas into a marketplace that has the ability to bring creators and individual funders together. Direct funding is really inspiring and I think its use for expanding the genres that a tenured company can venture into, reaching sideways, can be a boon. I even think its really great for companies going to novel production methods that test the tried and true bedrock.

There are some exceptions, though. I’m not fond of big companies plumbing Kickstarter for their basic tenants. Certainly, if other funding avenues are not available, then I’m OK with it. But I really object to seeing large name companies pitching the same type of product they would have been able to sell normally to Kickstarter. I’m also opposed to something I’ve seen come more and more: rapid-fire Kickstarters. I don’t think Kickstarter should be used a your basic business model and before putting another project up, you should definitely deliver on the first.

So, its with mixed feelings that I have signed up for Bones II. I have backed the original Bones Kickstarter, Warmachine: Tactics, Wild West Exodus, and Relic Knights, and I have had different results from each one. Relic Knights is still not at my door, Wild West Exodus is currently on the block to be sold, and Warmachine: Tactics has just finished up. Bones did me right, though. It delivered my products a little late, but they were all in there. A Kickstarter success, my first!

So when I heard the about Bones II, I was excited. The bones models I got were fantastic if a little bendy but the value was enormous, and I felt that I was helping Reaper achieve what it couldn’t do without my help: make the bones line a success quickly. It would be a kickstart to their bones line allowing them to get deeper into production. but then they put up Bones II, and the more I thought about it, this second incarnation had me more than a little torn. while there are some fantastic sculpts that are coming to the bones line, I feel that going back to Kickstarter is a little disingenuous. Isn’t this what we did for you the first time? Weren’t you supposed to move forward with your line once we got you… Kickstarted?

I’ve pledged in, but only to see what type of models they’ll release, and maybe get some extras. The real hook for me the first go round was the piles of giants I could get. Oh, and that I would never need another hero model again. 240 some models for $100 was pretty phenomenal. This next one, with about 14 days left, is sitting around 135 models. Its just not as thrilling. The addons are pretty neat, but only in a conceptual manner. The hill giants are really the only ones I have a powerful desire for.

We will see how it all pans out, but I am really hoping that they get a little more strength before the end so that I can feel good about my money going to them. Its going to need a lot more than a few cool models this time.

Hogan, Hero of the Resistance, has triumphed over Sodaving, Kayazy overlord of Leryn!

With a little help from his friends, of course!

This weeks IKRPG game on Tuesday ( I know I’m late, its been crazy), Finally pitted the adventurers against Sodaving and his personal guards. Though the fight was quick, with Sodaving going down quickly, there was no lack of danger to our intrepid hero.

After being hauled up and over the edge of the culvert in which we had followed our friend Sev and having dispersed the pistol wraiths, we found Koldun Lord Lazar and his right and left hand ladies in charge of a fairly empty area. Sodaving and his lackeys were firmly under watch. It also turned out our employer, Niccoli, had fooled Lazar into believing he was the world famous Reinholdt, and was advising him. Lazar questioned who we were and what was going on. We informed him that we were wrongly accused prisoners of Sodaving, forced to fight for his pleasure while he was feeding information to the Golden Crucible rebels. To convince him, I produced a map that I had found before ever entering Leryn, and told him that Sodaving had given it to us, thinking that we were Golden Crucible allies, and was therefore working against Khadoran interest in Laele

I’m going to interrupt myself here, as this is a point of the story I am none too proud of. I like bringing down the bad guy, and I like doing it clean. Playing an honest thief/alchemist/spy has been a challenge, and its one of the parts of the game I have enjoyed the most. That I felt there was no real, legitimate, in-game way to take out the big dude without framing him for something he didn’t do, feels so out of character, and it will haunt Jerek for a long time. With no real evidence, and only lies, was there actually anything Sodaving was doing that we could have, if we tried harder, found to bring him down? I’m not sure, and I’ll never know. Sodaving is dead, Leryn is under Menite control, and we are back on the run. It is good to have brought him down, but would the Menites just done it for us. We will never know. Now back to our narrative.

Once I recounted the false narrative to Lazar, staring Sodaving in the eye the whole time, he knew he was done. He broke free, a pair of followers running with him, and vanished into the crowed. Our tracker Von, however, was able to watch the crowd and follow him. We pursued. He lead us into the sewers where we had first encountered him after a lengthy chase. When we finally caught up to him and his two lackeys, a crazy monster broke out of the water in ambush obviously allied with Sodaving. Sor and Lefty, his Laborjack armed with a drill and a mining pick, took the brunt of the Hunter’s wrath, with Von and Ivan, the Explorer and Doomreaver, up front as they were the fastest, drawing Sodavings attention. I was stuck in the middle. That was perfect, however, as I am an intellectual archetype character with command 6, meaning that I give +1 to hit and damage to all allies within 6″ of me.

The battle took place both sides of a raging sewage channel, and the bridge over top of it. Sodaving strode in first, laying huge amounts of damage into Ivan, and slapping Von as well. Ivan Returned a blow, but Von was stymied, having to shoot into melee while being in melee himself. The -8 that created was more than could be overcome, even for him. Sor and Lefty struck back at the Hunter and mauled him pretty severely: enough that he took a bit of refuge in the raging sewage in order to not be attacked by the duo again. Sodaving, having enough of Ivan’s sharpened door and really having it out for Hogan used his acrobatic skills, which were impressive for a terrifying murdering machine decked out in mechanica armor with huge axes, to roll between Ivan and Von. He looked me in the eyes, and their icy looks told me he was going to end me. He connected on his first hit and Ivan ate the attack for me, his only friend. He was unable to protect me from his second attack, and I dropped to three HP. The last attack, thankfully, missed and I dodged backward out of reach where I could spike an acid grenade on his face. However, I had to survive the round to do it, and Sodaving looked just fine at that point.

Until Lefty. Sor roared out to Lefty to charge Sodaving, and the ever faithful laborjack surged into combat with the deadly Kayazy prince. Though we all had had problems hitting him Lefty had death in his cortex, connecting with a grand overhand swing. His pick bit deep into Sodavings back and armor,who howled in pain as Lefty yanked the pick out with inhuman strength, ripping apart both mechanical apparatus and human muscle. The pain was obvious in his eyes, and though he was harmed, he looked far from dead.

When it got around to my turn, I dropped an acid bomb onto Sodaving. I used the scatter rules and attacked with a pow 12 to all in the area of the grenade, feeling I needed to do supreme damage to actually kill the villain, and not expecting my dice to be good enough to hit. Instead, after suffering from the attention of Ivan and the gentle caress of Lefty, the simple damage of the alchemical acid was enough to put him in the ground. He staggered over to the edge of the waterway, where a giant sewergator, lurking for a chance at a lucky meal, sprung out and ended him forever. The remaining minions and the Hunter were easily dispatched by my compatriots, and we limped out of the sewer to the chorus of the Menite faithful outside the walls. the Khadorans were about to be expelled. The Northern Crusade had arrived.

IKRPG was last night, and Jerek of Jord Finally got his murder on.

Last night started, as it does so often recently, with our characters in cages. Ivan, our friendly neighborhood Doomreaver and I ringed together, with the others nearby in separate cages. Visitors come to Von, and Sev before coming over to me. Nicoli, our gobber employer, lets me in on some information. There is going to be a time when I am asked to present information on Sodaving, and I have some dirt I can throw in. Good. Being in these cages and fighting until we die seems like a poor out for Jerek, er, Hogan.

The crowd, over the days we are in captivity and not fighting, take less and less of an interest in us, and the enthusiastic recruits and the staunch supporters both vanish. Sodavings guard also diminish, to the point where its significantly noticeable. One of the set of patrons that doesn’t disappear though, is a pair of women who have been lurking around. It turns out that these two are the resident Koldun Lords right and left hand, respectively.
Interesting.

Sodaving, after days of imprisoning us, finally decided to do something about the accusations that he wished to bring against us. He calls out Sev, our poor, broken Gunmage ally. They will settle things the old Llaelese way: A duel.
I make sure to whisper conspicuously that Sevs good shooting arm is completely broken, while Sodavings is good as new. This is put down with cries of Sev being ambidextrous. A likely story!

As any proper duel does, this one calls for a second for each duelist. I try and volunteer to be Sodavings second, but Tom’s son, a prickly brat, is way ahead of me. Its sad I don’t get to try and jam Sodavings gun.

The duel is a quick affair, with both contestants beings shot in the face. Well, both were flesh wounded on the face, with each taking significant damage.
Sev, however, suspects Sodaving of cheating, and calls him out.
In front of everyone.
Sevs Luck is about to run out.

He gets tied up, and told that his fate is up to his companions, now, as he has dared to judge the fairness of his host. He is then tossed into a deep, dark, dank pit.

We are given our gear and told. Go, rescue him, if you can.
We swiftly don our gear, strap on Harnesses and drop down the pit to rescue our longtime ally from whatever is down there.

Its a dark, dank closed off culvert with a trio of bodies on the ground as well as gunpowder barrels, which is strange. There are also piles of refuse. Then, as we all start to get our bearing, Three eerie glowing spirits emerge from the darkness, pistols pointed at us.

The Pistol Wraiths get the jump on us, and each one fires away. They manage to miss a lucky few times, and we get to start our turns. While everyone fought the wraiths, I finally got to get my alchemist on. Fire in the hole drops a grenade on one of the wraiths, and then I spend my quick action to grab a grenade from my belt, my free to pull the pin, and then toss again as my action, hitting him again. I don’t do enough damage to drop it, but I’m pretty confident. I spend my extra bandoleer action to ready another grenade, and as soon as my next companion goes, I start off spending a feat point to toss another grenade. It costs a lot of money to go through 3 grenades a round, but man is it worth it! I missed at the start of Sors turn, but it was all worth it, as the next turn rats pop out from the gunpowder barrels, and we have more targets, and I toss three grenades again. The pistol wraiths managed to get me again, and I was down to 0 feat points with a broken agility, but -2 to hit doesn’t care when the dude tossing POW 12 AOE’s is within 4″. I take out a pair of rats, gaining a feat point, and once again tossed a pair of grenades at the second pistol wraith to come my way. Thankfully the other was taken care of between me going, and them going again.

Fun was had by all, and next week we get to see what the consequences of our actions are.

And the encounter put us at 30xp, so I finally get to be a spy. I really wish, as my cover so far has been Hogan, Freedom Fighter of Laele, that there was a Freedom Fighter career, or something that I could at least use as my cover identity. Alas, I just have to use another one, my Searforge Trader cover I have also used in game before.

While I was looking at the book for my cover identity, I cam across a couple more career pairs I’d like to try out, and I really think the design space in Warmachine could really support one of them.

Daravitch, Menite Priest/Duelist from Skirov
Hylissan, Iosan Gunmage/Magehunter
Crander, Ordic Alchemist/Warcaster
Komar, Trollkin Fellcaller/Storm Sorcerer.

IKRPG time!

Every Wednesday will be an update on the intrepid characters making their way through Leryn.

After the fight with the buffalo, we were confronted and asked to place our gear at the feet of a set of guardsmen. We did but we were all concered for the Crazy man with a Sharpened Door behind us, and waited for him to put away his weapon.
Noticing that Sodaving, the mad behind the problems in Leryn and the the provider of all the festivities, was missing, Jerek/Hogan decided there was something afoot. But what could be done. I played a ham to the crowd, but had little to go off of.
We eventually, after causing a lot of uproar among a crowd who seemed to be supportive of our group and cause, left the arena and went back to the cages he had for us.

Being locked in a cage with a doomreaver was intimidating. With his gibbering greatsword chained to his wrist, he was a severe danger to me.

So I started a conversation.
The details are fuzzy, but I do believe that the gist of the conversation ended with the the conclusion that because we killed things with him, we were his friends. And you don’t kill your friends.
Now, we’ve a doomreaver on our side! YES!

After that, The populace lined up and were allowed to talk to the captors, and many of them expressed interest in helping free Leryn from Sodaving, but something was terribly wrong. Sodaving was allowing it. He was egging me on.
He was planning something.
It took a bit of talking out, but Jerek thinks he’s got the plan hashed out.
Sodaving is going to use me to take down the resistance all at once. When the time comes, he is going to break me, and destroy the resistance with one fell blow.
And I don’t know when or how.
———————————————————————————————————————————
It was a light evening of Roleplay, but it was a good, deep one. I’ve only got a few more before the baby comes, so I want to make the most of it!

Privateer Press Responds to Plastic Quality

This was something that impressed me, both from a community standpoint and from a company standpoint.

The problems with the plastics that PP has chosen to use have been causing gripes for some time. It was noticable in the live community, and has a really vocal component in the online forums. It has been harder and harder to blow the concern off, especially in person. Problems fitting and mold lines in places that make it hard to model are just a few of the legitimate problems that I’ve heard vented by my community just here in MD.

I’ve never really experienced the problems myself to be honest. But the problem is much to large to be ignored. This weekend, it came to a head

The thread is here

Its a long, civil discussion, 7 pages and counting, about the problems with the plastics. I was impressed with the levelheadedness of many of the posters when I perused it, but I figured that it’d just be another lost topic after a few bad seeds stepped in and ruined it for everyone. surprisingly, it never happened, and it continued through the weekend as a civil, polite discussion. I still considered that there would be no official response.

Then, yesterday, there was this

PP responds via Simon Berman, the Community Manager. The response is a little canned-sounding, but that is kinda the cost of working with a company. However, they responded with a concern for their customers, to a thread that was criticizing their product, on their own forum. Good for them!
They also didn’t lock it, which is doublegood.

As I said, I’m impressed. Glad to wear the black for em!

-Tio.

The Story So Far!

Now that you’re caught up!
Our intrepid Hero is trapped with his companions in the Hands of Sodaving, Khadoran Occupational ruler of a Llaeles city! What ever are they to do?!

Turns out, they are to fight in the arena for Sodaving’s perverse pleasure, and the pleasure of the crowd. Where three days ago the fight against Bog Trogs and Gatormen took them to the brink of their limits, this time they took on a pair of giant bison-creatures and a couple swarms of rats. It was not to bad, but the bison were big.

Jerek of Jhord um…ehm… Hogan of Llaele…

The best moment of the night was definitely tossing a cinder bomb at a bison who’s engaged with our resident ‘Jack Marshal/Military Officer. Hitting easily (RAT 8 is no slouch, especially at 25 xp!) I proceeded to do no damage (1,1) to the Bison but neatly pop 9 (6,5) onto Sor, the Trollkin engaging it and my ally. Next time I started dropping bombs onto my teammates I switched over to the standard Explosive Grenades!

It was a quick good night!

Now, to get my 27xp Reward: 2 occupational Skills. I’m most likely taking Forgery (+1) and Climb (+1) because YES!

-Tio