Thursday, May 5, 2016

Social Media Trading: I got ripped off. You don't have to be.

Have you ever been swindled? Had a trade, sale or purchase go south. Well in the last few weeks, I myself have been ripped off.
On the Wargames Buy Swap and Sell page on Facebook (which I have never had issues with before and will continue to use) I posted that I was WTT (willing to trade).

I had up for offer a
-NIB still shrink wrapped 2 player Hordes starter set
-Brand new mint condition faction books for both factions in the box
-A limited ed Malifaux model
-4 Mantic Zombies as a little cherry on top

In total, this was approximately $180 MSRP, + Shipping.

I wanted NIB or NOS (new on sprue)
-6 Kataphron Destroyers
-5 Electro Priests
-A Magos Dominus.

I got contacted by one Robert Davis of Harvard (or West Groton), MA who was willing to make a deal. He had no negative feedback on the boards, and had other people he was looking to trade with. He sent me pics of all the items. Seemed on the up and up, the only thing was he was a little slow to communicate. However he is not the first person I have encountered like that, so I was okay with this. We exchanged addresses. I got his stuff mailed out the next day and sent the tracking number. He said he got his out the next, and that his wife mailed it. No tracking # provided. Uh-oh.
I played it off. He said his wife sent it, and it was a Friday. I contacted him again on Tuesday to see if my stuff had arrived and to see if he had found the tracking number for mine. He said they had to look for it again but he had got my stuff. Okay. I asked a few more times, still no number or evidence he had actually shipped my stuff. Crap.

Told him I was going to contact the admins because I was getting uncomfortable, to which there was no reply. It had been 11 days at that point since he said he had shipped, and mine got to him in 4. Finally contacted the admins and got some advisement, all of which (and more) I will put into the tips below. I ended up giving him 1 more day with an ultimatum that if my stuff didn't arrive or he didn't provide me with a valid tracking number so I could track down my stuff,

I told him he could either pay me for the goods he received or I was filing a mail fraud complaint.

Of course he didn't want to pay and just maintained it was sent.

So at this point I filed a police report and a mail fraud complaint.

What is a mail fraud?
18 U.S. Code § 1343 - Fraud by wire, radio, or television
Whoever, having devised or intending to devise any scheme or artifice to defraud, or for obtaining money or property by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises, transmits or causes to be transmitted by means of wire, radio, or television communication in interstate or foreign commerce, any writings, signs, signals, pictures, or sounds for the purpose of executing such scheme or artifice, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both. If the violation occurs in relation to, or involving any benefit authorized, transported, transmitted, transferred, disbursed, or paid in connection with, a presidentially declared major disaster or emergency (as those terms are defined in section 102 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5122)), or affects a financial institution, such person shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 30 years, or both.

Essentially if you mislead someone into getting something, for nothing, via basically any means other than face to face, you have committed mail fraud. While this part doesn't detail all the punishments, if it is not in an emergency or against a financial institute, it is punishable by up to 20 years imprisonment and/or $250,000 in fines. Doesn't seem worth it for $180 in Warmachine does it?

So what do you do if you have been ripped off?
Well first of all, make sure you have been. If the guy gives you a tracking number and insured it, he didn't rip you off, it just got lost. Contact the postal service and attempt to find you package. If it is gone entirely, file for the insurance. If they did not insure it for extra, priority mail comes with $50 insurance standard. Work a settlement between you and the other party for how much they owe you beyond that. It is the senders responsibility to ensure goods are delivered.

But lets assume for this case YOU DID get ripped off. What to do?
1- Contact your trade sites ADMIN ASAP. There may be others having issues with the same seller (in my case there were 3 or 4 of us). This will ensure the guy gets banned from your group so he can't rip off others.
2- All victims need to file a Mail Fraud Complaint with the US Postal Investigation Service. THE FORM IS HERE. It is important to note, even if you are not a US Citizen and this is international, you can and should do this. This is the investigating body for this time of crime. The more of you who file, the more likely an investigation will occur and the criminal be brought to justice. It is important to note that this does not guarantee you will get your goods or money back, but in the prosecution of mail fraud, compensation is one of the primary goals of the court. Make sure you provide the tracking number for your package (if it was a trade) and any/all pertinent information and keep your receipts.
3- File a report with your local police and the other party's local police. They may or may not be able to do anything (they typically do not have the jurisdiction to), however it is good for record keeping and they maybe able to help.
4- If you used PAYPAL, file a complaint/resolution with them.

Ways to avoid being cheated:
1- For sales and purchases, ONLY USE PAYPAL. Select PAYMENT FOR GOODS AND SERVICES. Unless you personally know the individual, never EVER send money any other way, this includes paypal friends and family, bank wire transfer, and western union. If they insist on anything else, turn the offer down.
2- For trades you can still back it up with PAYPAL (wish I had now). Establish an agreed upon amount for the value of the models in the trade. So if it is $100, you transfer $100 to them and they do the same to you. SELECT PAYMENT FOR GOODS AND SERVICES. There may be a small charge for both of you, but consider this an insurance fee. Now if the goods never arrive or they gave you something other than you traded for, you can still file with PAYPAL and get your money back.
3- Check feedback on all trade sites. Typically there is some file or message board. If they have anything negative against them, don't go through with the deal. Check multiple sites you are a member, in case one group has good or no feedback on the person in question, but another has negative feedback. If possible, talk to others they have done business with to verify they are on the level, particularly for really big trades.
4- Use google to reverse image search any pictures they send you. Make sure they just aren't using random pictures of models and products found online.
5- Be patient and be suspicious. If you posted up something rather large or are looking for something particularly rare, be wary of anyone who immediately contacts you and has exactly what you want.
6- If you have the smallest doubt, DO NOT GO TROUGH WITH THE TRADE. Your intuition is there for a reason. Trust it.

I hope this helps. And if you are the person doing this, you are a jerk, and I hope you get caught. This is an amazing hobby. Don't spoil it for everyone. It is already expensive enough and people are really just trying to enjoy the game. By ripping someone off, you have not only stolen value from them, but also stolen a bit of their hobby fun.

Oh, and if you happen to know Robert Davis of Harvard MA, give him a swift kick to the groin for me.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Adepticon Coverage Part 4: Necromunda by Night Tournament

Just a quick post continuing my Adepticon Coverage
I got to play Necromunda by Night on thursday night and I took my Arbites gang. Every gang was allowed to bring 1200 points and could take 2 Hired Guns. As Arbites I was allowed an extra 200 and they COULD be Hired Guns, so I took a Sniper and a Wyrd painted up as a sanctioned psyker to keep is all super fluffy.
We got to play 4 games, and I had fun in all of them. Won 1, Tied 2 and Lost 1. Loved playing ALL my opponents and there were some beautiful gangs (wish I had some pictures, but lighting was TERRIBLE in the room). Best painted was this crazy Chaos Goliath Gang.

Overall, I was really glad to get to play as it has been a while, but I don't think I will be doing it again next year. Just a few things that were disappointing IMO

1- The terrain on the top 2 tables was awesome. The middle two was okay. The last two were kinda crappy, and table 5 was unfairly set up (both my opponent and I agreed. And I played on it twice). There was a huge train in the way and it completely blocked line of sight for 3/4 of the board width.

2- The games were rushed. We had about an hour a game, which would be okay it we were all on top of our game rules wise AND got to see the scenarios BEFORE Adepticon. But neither was the case for anyone, so no games seemed to ever finish. And in between I always felt rushed to advance my gang, and we weren't doing territory or anything either...
3- Mission design.They were fun missions but there were a few issues. Each mission had something wrong with it IMO.
-Game one was 5 objective markers, but the organizer walked down one side of the table, so on my table (Table 5) I had 1 marker in my table half, 1 dead center, and 3 on my opponent's table half, 2 of which were behind that annoying train. Due to the time constraints on the TO, in a rush he made a perfectly reasonable mission was imbalanced. Fortunately, somehow I managed to tie this game, as you had to move objective markers back to the board edge to scare them and my Cyber Hound is SUPER FAST so I got to bring back mine and the center one and through shooting kept my opponent from getting the ONE I could even see on his side. Thank the God-Emperor for my Sniper.
-Game two was this weird creature hunting one. What stunk about this is he could show up turn 1 and you rolled for each member of your gang and on a 6 he showed up next to them. So I as Arbites had only 7 guys on the table and my opponent was Redemptionists and had 14, so instantly stacked in his favour. We went 37 rolls before getting a 6 though, but it still showed up on my opponent's side and he killed it immediately (though it was Epic. He flamed his own juve to kill it, which was a really fluffy sacrifice for the Emperor). It seemed on a full 1/2 of the tables it was killed in the turn it showed up OR it showed up and then proceeded to kill 1/2 of the gang it was next to, so it was either an instant win or loss for a player and a tournament spoiler if it killed a bunch of your gang. On table two, it showed up on the first roll and he melted it in the first shot, winning before his opponent could do anything. Any game where this can happen is not "good". A better mechanic would be a single roll per player turn that progressively increased as the turns went on, and then the monster would RANDOMLY show up on 1 or 4 or 5 terrain pieces or objective markers. Just would've made it more fun and fair.
-Game three COULD have been cool, but once again I feel the TO rushed and set up poorly. There were 3 ork boys that had beastly stat lines, but they were set up in the middle of the table. So between my opponent and I we killed them by turn two and they didn't even get to move because they were constantly down or pinned. I killed 2 of the 3, but that didn't matter, as the victory condition wasn't around the orks, but around bottling the opponent, which is near impossible in such short time frames, especially against 12-16 man gangs... This was a tie for me.
-Game four was replaced with a game from the day Necro Tournament. It was a modified shootout. I ended up randomly bringing 2 arbites and my psyker. I won the shootout and quickly removed 2 of his players by charging them while they were down. I then proceeded to roll my first Perils on my weird in the Tournament and he got POSSESSED! Great way to end the tourney! But as for the rest of the game, because of the way the shootout was, the side that lost that was basically 1 casualty away from bottling, so the game could end really quickly and there was really no strategy to the shootout. It was random how many guys came, random which guys came to it, and random who shot first. So yeah, just poor mission design again IMO.

But I guess that's the under hive.

Now, I am not trying to complain that much. I did have fun and I am glad the event is run. BUT I think the TO should send the missions out before hand and take a little more time himself to make sure he is prepped for each mission.

Next year, we are probably all just going to Medieval Times Thursday night.

Friday, April 15, 2016

New Legion Cataphractii Shoulder Pads

Well these look pretty neat! Want to customize your Cataphractii a little more?

Well Forge World just released Legion Terminator Shoulder Pads

So far they have shoulder pads for
Sons of Horus
Alpha Legion
Iron Warriors
World Eaters
Iron Hands
Death Guard

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Angels of Death Psychic Power Strategies (and Shenanigans)

So I will resume my Adepticon coverage tomorrow or Friday, but I HAD to get in an article about the new Astartes Powers ASAP. A few of these are just cool combos or silly ideas, but my last point is game breaking, so reader beware. It is the kinda thing you are going to start seeing in top ITC builds I believe, and really makes me question GW's playtesting (Hey guys SM 30th b-day! BREAK EVERTYHING!!!)

GET TO THE TREES!!! Terrain Surfing
So this is really ALL ABOUT Geokenesis Power 6: Shifting Worldscape. Now this is a WC 3 power so you need some heavy hitters on the board. Things like Tiggy, Mephiston, Full Conclaves and Grey Knights work great for this.  CRAZY RIGHT!

So read the power in the picture. Pretty spiffy and ridiculous. And completely open for some especially funny stuff.
1- Spin Terrain a vehicle is hiding in to get rear armour, or partially in to force dangerous terrain tests.
2- Make it really annoyingly dense in from of vehicles, jump infantry, bikes and jetbikes
etc. etc. I am sure you all can come up with some good stuff.

BUT the real idea here is why bother with Transports like Rhinos? Why not surf on Ruins towards your enemies. They are better than Rhinos, because your guys will be more resilient IMO and can "Disembark" and assault in the same turn. Make it even better by bolstering your Ruins with a Techmarine. You can also bring the enemy to you I guess, but that is not nearly as fun.

10 Internet Points to the first person that makes a Crimson Permanent Assurance Chapter.

ALL YOUR BASE ARE BELONG TO US! Fortification Nullification
CONTINUING with shifting world scape from above, something really funny is you can move NON-BUILDING fortifications so
1- Skyshields
2- Promethium Relays
3- Aegis Defence Lines
4- Tau Tide Walls
etc. etc.
The reason it HAS to be Non-building stuff, is because right now I am ruling conservatively and going with the building rules on page 110 BRB, where it states Buildings use the Transport Vehicle Rules, the only difference is THEY CANNOT MOVE. So even though the power says "Anything that can be physically picked up" I am going with the more conservative rule.

BUT this means you can STEAL a defence line or a prometium relay, or move all the Tau on their tidewall INTO ASSAULT RANGE or deny someone the benefits of their skyshield. All pretty annoying. And if you play you can move buildings to, you can do even meaner things, throwing bastions off of objectives and the like.

DAFT PUNKS- Technomantic Knights
For this one you can have one knight LOW or really any unit of Knights. If you are taking 1 knight, don't bother with a full Technomantic Librarian Conclave, just 1 Lib will do. BUT if you are running any formation knights, check this
3-5 Knights (Baronial Court, Adamantine Lance, Exalted Court, Gallant Lance etc. etc. Which ever you like best. It doesn't matter) + Librarian Conclave. I would likely use White Scars or Ravenguard chapter tactics. White Scars if I could afford bikes. All Libs roll on Technomantic IMO, but you can spread it out obviously, But you at least need to get Powers 4 and 5, Reforge and Warpmetal Armour. Basically, just buff and repair your knights CONSTANTLY. Haywire armour threats to them if you have nothing else to do, and let the Knights worry about the infantry. I really like this table and to me it is the "Best" in that every power on their is useful in some way in a balanced list and nothing is overtly broken either, like on some of the other new tables.

I am sorry for this one. I really am. This is game breaking. I know. But I have to put it out there...
So look on the Fulmination table, power #6
Electrodisplacement. If anything should be WC3, it is electrodisplacement. What is allows you to do is swap your  psyker and his unit with another friendly, non vehicle unit. And you can charge after doing this. That is what makes this the utterly most broken power in the range of them all. Why? Well, Superfirends Death Stars can now get a near guaranteed turn 1 assault, especially if you have a full conclave. Why try and get invisibility when you can just BE THERE.

So the three best ways to deploy this IMO
1- A random drop podded in unit. Either something REALLY cheap you don't care about in case you fail your psychic test, OR something resilient that needs to be near the enemy anyway, like Grav Cents or Flamer Sternguard.
2- A Skyhammer Devastator Squad. Equip one of the Squads with 4 x Missile Launchers or Lascannons so when you warp them out of there, they still have Range to shoot. However, still in your enemies face is another Dev Squad, 2 Assault Squads, and now a Death Star. But you will have 3 hard hitting units ASSAULTING TURN 1 in your enemies deployment zone.
3- This is the most OP IMO. Where the others rely on room to deploy a drop pod and can go off the board, this can not AND it can last ALL GAME, allowing you to warp around the board LIKE LIGHTING. What is it? A squad of scout bikers. Particularly white scars or astral claws if you can help it, for the skilled rider.
Why them? Well they infiltrate. Then scout move 6". Then move 12". Then you warp them out and your psyker in and they can assault 12". AND your bikes can then turbo boost off to the next big threat and be there for a turn 2 or 3 assault!. OH AND THEY CAN HAVE A LOCATOR BEACON to bring on all your other stuff.

So there you go. And remember, it is just a game...

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Adepticon Coverage Part Three: Cool Hoth Board

So just a really quick post to share one of the coolest boards there. I may sign up for this next year TBH.

It is apparently a home ruled Hoth Battle. They appear to use WoC and Imperial Assault minis, though I noticed the X-Wing and the Snowspeeder are old Micro Machine Action Fleet toys painted up a little better.