Thursday, May 26, 2016

WEEKEND WIP: Knight Atrapos and Blood Bowl Ogres

Just wanted to do a quick WIP share . Some big stuff I really want to finish in the next few days.
 Ogres are actually for a commission. They are fun, but at this point just really want to finish them and get them off my project desk.
 The inside of the cockpit is fully done.
Hope to share some completed stuff by Monday!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Adepticon Coverage Part 5: Zone Mortalis Tournament (with lists)

I really need to finish covering Adepticon don't I? Sorry, life is crazy busy sometimes.

Having played Necromunda on Thursday night and waiting for the 40k team tournament on Saturday and Sunday, I had to fill up a Friday. I thought about the 40k friendly, but figured I was going to get enough "real" 40k during the tournament and I wanted to get some other games in. One of my team mates saw there was a Zone Mortalis event, so we figured why not? It is not often that one has a chance to play some of the coolest rules there are. It is just too hard for most of us to build and store a board capable of playing such games.

If you don't know what Zone Mortalis is, it is 40k fighting in the most extreme of environments. It is supossed to represent battlefields such as the inside of a Space Hulk or Starship, the Underhive or a cramped cave network. Sound fun? Well it is AND the rules are FREE from Forge World!

The format at Adepticon was the Combatant Zone Mortalis Force Org Chart and a limit of 750 points. A key thing to note is that in Zone Mortalis ONLY TROOPS AND ELITES ARE SCORING! This would come in handy later.

Knowing that I had a premium for space and time, I wanted to play the lowest model count army I could. This would help speed up games at the event, but more importantly it meant I had less to paint and could ensure I had all the models I needed by and at Adepticon. What fit this bill? Well, Dreadnoughts of course. They also happen to be the largest thing you can take in Zone Mortalis.
Then I had a realization. I could run ALL DREADNOUGHTS. Since the minimum number of Troops required is one, and I have the only dread troop in the game (Cassor the Damned), this was PERFECT.

In three games I had a W-W-T. BUT This was enough, with my battlepoints and paint score to win BEST OVERALL!
BA Dreads (730)
HQ- Librarian Dreadnought- 225: Melta-gun, Mastery Level 2, Legacy of Glory: Battle of Terra (IWND, though I never had to use it I believe)
Elites- Contemptor Dreadnought- 225: Extra Armour, Magna Grapple, Blood Fist w/ Storm Bolter (I wanted a Heavy Flamer, but had to make do with the model I had), Kheres Assault Cannon
Elites- Furioso Dreadnought-150: Blood Talons, Melta-gun, Storm Bolter (once again, wanted HF, but alas WYSIWYG and such is life with Metal Dreads), Smoke Launchers (also WYSIWYG. Magna Grapple would have been taken otherwise)
Troops- Cassor the Damned- 140: Blood Talons, Melta-gun, Storm Bolter, Magna Grapple
HQ- Typhus
Troops- Plague Marines (5)- 135: Meltagun, Champion w/ Melta-bomb
Troops- Plague Marines (5)- 130: Meltagun
Fast Attack- Spawn(4)- 144
Fast Attack- Spawn(3)- 108

Setup- 4 x 4 board with Table quarters deployment zone. Deploy within 6" of the board edge. Night Fight turns 1 and 2. Primary Objective- Kill Points. Secondary- Slay the Warlord, First Blood, Linebreaker. Secondary are for Battlepoints only and not determining victor.

Strategems available- Attacker- Sustained Assault. Defender- Barricades and Sentry Gun. Reaction fire and Cold Void in effect.
This game did not go well for my opponent, but at least he walked away with Best Sportsman in the end. Basically the board was a large open room in the middle, where I proceeded to move all my dreads. The game started with 2 in reserve, but in the end it didn't matter. All he could do was he throw his spawn and Typhus at me. The spawn put up a fight and bogged down my Contemptor... untill my Furiosos arrived and wiped them up. Typhus was just outright splattered. In the end I only lost 1 or 2 hull points total and he had 3 Plague Marines left. Max battlepoints and all secondary objectives achieved, total 18.
HQ- Lord- 50: Staff of Light
Elites- Flayed Ones(7)- 91: 14 x Flayer Claws
Elites- Flayed Ones(7)- 91: 14 x Flayer Claws
Troops- Immortals(5)- 85: 5 x Tesla Carbines
Fast Attack- Canoptek Wraiths(5)- 215: Whip Coils
Fast Attack- Canoptek Wraiths(5)- 215: Whip Coils

4 x 4, 6" Deployment Zones, single objective dead center, 4 more not withing 6" of another objective or each other. Primary Objective- 3 VP for the center objective, 1 for the surrounding. Secondary- Slay the Warlord, First Blood, Line Breaker.  Secondary are for Battlepoints only and not determining victor.

Strategems allowed: None. ZM rules in effect: Reaction Fire, Cold Void, Catastrophic Damage (falling ceilings and what not).

A much tougher game. Apparently, this player won the last 3 or more years with the same list. I tell you, those Wraiths ignoring Terrain kinda breaks Zone. However, he was not counting on facing 4 Dreads.  Basically, got a bogged down assault of my Librarian and Cassor vs the 10 Wraiths. This ended up eating up 4 turns (2-5). I did loose both dreads in the end though. HOWEVER while that assault drug on, my Contemptor took the center objective and my Furioso killed off a bunch of Flayed Ones and Immortals. Turn 6 he made a last attempt gambit assaulting my Contemptor with his remaining Wraiths, also attempting to contest the center objective... BUT remember in Zone Mortalis ONLY TROOPS AND ELITES ARE SCORING. So no contesting. I held 4 VP to his 1 (Flayed Ones held the one my two dead dreads had been going for). He  took away Slay the Warlord, though I also got First Blood. Neither of us got Line Breaker.  So 14 points for the battle, 32 overall.
GAME 3- INVASION vs Imperial Fists SM
HQ- Captain- 140: Artificer Armour, Thunder Hammer
Elites- Terminator Assault Squad (8)- 310: 5 x Twin Lightning Claws, 3 x TH&SS
Troops- Scouts(5)- 60: 5 x Sniper Rifles
Heavy Support- Centurion Devastator Squad(3)- 240: 3 x Grav Amp & Grav Cannons, 3 x Hurricane Bolters

4 x 4, 6" DZ. Primary Obj: 3 VP for each unit in enemies DZ. 2 VP for each unit destroyed. Secondary: Slay the Warlord, First Blood and Last Man Standing (Player with greatest number or surviving units at the end game). Secondary are for Battlepoints only and not determining victor.

Strategems allowed: None. ZM rules in effect: Reaction Fire, Cold Void, Catastrophic Damage (falling ceilings and what not).

This game basically involved our forces walking up the sides of the board and slugging it out in the middle. I sent Cassor up the right, Contemptor up the middle and my Lib & Furioso up the left.He sent his Terminators and Centurions at these two and his Captain and Scouts at Cassor.

This actually led to some crazy Shenanigans. Flaw 1 for him was to try and blow open doors with his Cents. Flaw 1 for me was leaving Cassor unsupported.

On the left I broke open a wall (the first one of all 3 games) and sat there waiting for his Terminators. They ended up approaching too close and getting assaulted, loosing and Falling back to where they were hidden but useless.

On the right, I failed a charge at the Captain with Cassor (snake eyes) and then he through grenades at me with his Scouts and Captain, charged, the scout sarge challenged me (Cassor is a Character), and wasted my attacks turn 1. He lost the first turn, but held his ground. Next turn, his SCOUTS killed Cassor with a Krak Grenade, getting him 1st Blood.
YET back on the left, his slowly plodding Centurions found them selves facing 3 dreads, and where Shot up and then Assaulted, dying before they could even strike back.

With the death the game ended, his scouts and captain just 1 inch short of my deployment zone, so we tied the primary objective, 2 VP to 2 VP. He got First Blood as well. We each had 3 units left, so no one got Last Man Standing. Points for the game: 6. Total, 38. Average: 12.67/18.

In the end, turns out I tied Battlepoints with the Necron Player I faced in game 2, BUT since I had beat him, I won the tie breaker and took the event.

Each of my opponents were great sportsman and the games were really fun. I particularly enjoyed my last game. Such a crazy outcome with the Scouts, and the guy I was playing was awesome!

Each of the armies looked great to boot.

Sorry there aren't more/better pictures, read this post to find out why! 

4 Dreads payed off big AND they were SUPER FUN to run. I may try and do Zone again next year, though I will likely run a different list (I don't want to be "That Guy"). I will still include 1 or 2 dreads, but I am thinking a decked out Death Company would be pretty gnarly to have.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Happy Mother's Day (Humour)

Happy Mother's Day to all you mommy hobbyists! For the rest of you, put down your paint brushes and stop playing your games today and give some love and attention to those women who put up with our all consuming addiction. And yes, it is more important to spend a little of that money on her that your plastic crack, you can get those models later.

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.