Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Late-August 2016 reading...

I wasted a good part of the week watching Olympic soccer.  I also watched Chelsea in the English Premier League, too (go Blues).  However, I did find time write, edit, and read.

Here is what I read:

1)  Andromeda's War by William Dietz.  After sitting on my ass watching television, I got around to reading the first chapter on Monday morning.  Looks like a good read.  Caught my interest.  It's about a Terran officer in the Legion of the Damned given a thankless job to bring in a native renegade.  I'd like to read the majority of it this weekend if possible.

2)  Tour of the Merrimack:  The Myriad/Wolf Star by R. M. Meluch.  Terran Empire run by Americans vs. the Palatine Roman Empire for control of the galaxy.  Have some critters called the Hive who want to munch everything to death getting in the way.  Fun so far.  Only at page 91 out of 690 pages.

3)  Proxima by Stephen Baxter.  Yuri Eden got older and wiser.  His group of survivors are headed to the equator of Proxima c in order to avoid the coming winters.  Interesting news that an Earthlike world was discovered in the Proxima Centauri star system this week.  It's called Proxima b....

4)  The Last Stand of Fox Company by Bob Drury.  More wounded US Marines fighting off Chinese PLA infantry attacks at Fox Hill in the Chosin Reservoir during the Korean War.  Aside from the battle scenes, its some of the most of depressing reading giving the stupidity of the American high command in Japan...

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Completed 15mm SYW Saxon infantry and cuirassier brigades, 18AUG16

Here are photos of the completed 15mm SYW Saxon cavalry and infantry brigades for Koenigs Krieg 2nd edition:

                                         15mm SYW Saxon Cuirassier brigade and engineer wagons.

                                         15mm SYW Saxon infantry brigade.

WIP, 15mm SYW Saxon infantry and cavalry, 18AUG16

Here are several photos of recently painted WIP, 15mm SYW Saxon infantry and cavalry:

                                          15mm SYW Saxon infantry brigade, 18AUG16.

                                          15mm SYW Saxon cuirassier brigade, 18AUG16.

Mid-August 2016 reading: Part II

My ambitions didn't match what I actually accomplished.  Here is what I read:

1)  Andromeda's War by William Diatz.  This is a Legion of the Damned novel starring Lt. Andromeda McKnee.  She's been assigned to a god forsaken planet to help pacify it.  Her Legion platoon has also been given a thankless mission to bring in an alien troublemaker, too.  I've never read the series.  But I heard Diatz is a good writer...

2)  Tour of the Merrimack:  Myriad/Wolf Star by R.M. Meluch.  I tried reading some more Monday.  Never quite got going.  I'll try to read more next week.

3)  Proxima by Stephen Baxter.  Yuri Eden and his partner, a former astronaut, met up with more human survivors on Proxima c.  Meanwhile, a human engineer met up with her double from another universe.  Their meeting went down with "Earthrise," human like super computer AI in Paris, France.  They tried to figure out who built the wormhole on Mercury that caused Karen's double to come into this existence...

4)  The Last Stand of Fox Company by Bob Drury.  More wounded US Marines holding off more crazed Chinese PLA infantry battalions in the Chosin Reservoir in 1950...

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Mid-August 2016 reading....

Here's what I've finished and started so far this month:

1)  Working God's Mischief by Glenn Cook.  Finished the book Saturday.  Review has been posted on the blog.  I laughed out loud because of the author's writing.  It felt like Croaking from the Black Company novels in a medieval fantasy setting.  Fun read.

2)  Tour of the Merrimack:  The Myriad/Wolf Star by R. M. Meluch.  I started the Myriad last week.  I'll try reading when I can.  It's interesting.  American Terran Empire vs. Roman Empire in space vs. alien bugs named the Hive.

3)  Promixa by Stephen Baxter.  The main protagonists and their child discover other humans on Proxima c.  The novel is getting weird in some ways with alien wormhole technology, though.

4)  The Last Stand of Fox Company by Bob Drury.  I finished a chapter were Fox Company made it through the first 24 hours of battle.  Their siege by the Chinese Peoples Liberation Army lasted a week.  But the Americans were airdropped radios, batteries, ammo, and 82mm mortars during the day.

Warmachine Mark III Demo Game, 10AUG16

I played a Warmachine MK III demo game with a friend named Andy Mitchell last night.  He ran a battle box version of Magnus the Traitor.  I and Damiano and some warjacks. 

The changes with Warmachine MK III are the following:

1)  Point costs for figures have been doubled.

2)  Warjack points for individual spell casters have been tripled.

3)  75 points is the average point cost for a regular game of Warmachine MK III.  Battle box games as "zero" points.  You use the Warjack Point allowance of your warcaster to come with your battle force.

4)  You can now premeasure during your turn.

5)  Warjacks gain one free focus point for being in the control area of your warcaster.

6)  Some stats and abilities have been changed depending on a model's card. 

7)  Any Mercenary force can work together. 

8)  Everything else in the basic game is the same as MK II Warmachine.

Andy went first with Magnus.  He moved his warjacks and then cast several spells.  Not knowing what I was doing, I cast an upkeep spell and moved my warjacks.  The second turn, he advance Magnus again and got another shot off on my heavy warjack.  I had Damiano fire his personal heavy warjack's cannon back.  I damaged one of his heavy warjacks.  Magnus activated his other warjack and wrecked my heavy.

There are no more wrecked warjacks.  You just take the model off the board.  I had my remaining Bucaneer warjack and Damiano retreat behind hard cover for a turn before calling the game.  There was no way I'd win...

Warmachine is a simple game to figure out once you know what the stats are.  There are stats for Movement, Melee, Ranged Attack, Defense, Armor, Power/Strength, and Command.  For Melee and Ranged Attacks, you subtract your MAT/RAT value from the enemy's model's Defense.  That is the roll you need for successfully attack on 2D6.  You can spend a warcaster's Focus to get another 1D6 on Attack and Damage rolls. 

Damage rolls are handled similarly to Attack rolls.  However, you take your model's STR&POW state and subtract it from the enemy model's Armor value.  That is the number needed to damage it on 2D6.  You also roll a different colored 1D6 for Warjacks to determine the location of damage on the model.  So that regard, the game is like Battle Tech concerning the Warjacks/Colossals.  Damage to living models and warcasters' are straight damage roll.  Loss all your warjacks/or warcaster, then you lose the game.

Warcaster's also have focus points.  That allows them to cast magic spells and boost their warjacks' Attack/Damage rolls.  Focus points are allocated at the beginning of the warcaster's turn.  You need to think ahead about how you're going to use your focus points.  They regenerate each turn.  Hordes has a similar thing called Fury for a warlock's Warbeasts, though they are used differently in Hordes as opposed to Focus in Warmachine.  Both games are interchangeable... 

Sunday, August 7, 2016

WIP, 18mm SYW Saxon Cuirassiers, 08AUG16

Here's a photo of WIP, 18mm SYW Saxon Cuirassiers, 08AUG16:

Review of Working God's Mischief by Glenn Cook

Author:  Glenn Cook.
Title:  Making God's Mischief.
Publisher:  TOR Fantasy.
Copyright:  2014.
Pages:  598.
Price:  $8.99 (US).

Overview and Impressions:
It took a while for Making God's Mischief to warm up to me.  Piper Heckt is the main hero, a Germanic landkneckt who can kill gods with special black powder weapons.

In love with the Grail Empress, Heckt leads the Army of Righteousness on crusade against the Premans for control of the Holy Land.  He uses his own family and the Shining Ones, minor gods from forgotten religions, to act as his general staff.

There are also the forces of the Night who lie in waiting to pounce on Heckt's latest enterprise.  And the usual medieval fantasy politics that mirror real world history.  Towards the end, Making God's Mischief was fun to read.  I laughed a lot.  The author has a way with words.  I wish I could as creative.


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Early August 2016 reading....

Here is what I've read in the past week:

1)  Working God's Mischief by Glenn Cook.  Read about 250 pages over the weekend.  The main character, a Landskneckt wizard, is getting interesting with his patron, the Grail Empress.  The Empire is getting ready to launch a Crusade for the Holy Land.  Heckt has trouble keeping the old gods who are indentured to him in line. 

2)  Analog Magazine September 2016 issue:  I finished reading the latest issue on Sunday.  I'm not impressed by the remaining short stories.  I think I could do a better job writing them.

3)  Tour of the Merrimack:  The Myriad/Wolf Star by R. M. Meluch.  I started reading The Myriad while waiting for my mom at a local hospital on Monday.

4)  Proxima by Stephen Baxter.  Yuri Eden and his partner are raising their daughter on Proxima c.  The novel flashed back to Mercury where a UNI major opened a wormhole to another world.  Took a while for me to warm up to the novel. 

5)  The Last Stand of Fox Company by Drury.  Saga of the 7th US Marine Regiment's Fox Company at the Chosin Reservoir during the Korean War.  Fox Company is now surrounded by thousands of Red Chinese regulars.