Saturday, October 30, 2010

[40K] Where Are The Ladies?

So I have an idea for a Killzone team that would need at least 2 ladies. The idea is spawned out of the old Armageddon crew- I'm thinking of Chad Black, his lovely Anita, along with Father Pain and Mercy. They would most likely be Black Templars, or possibly just really DARK Space Marines. One of the ladies can easily be out of the Witchhunters/Sisters of Battle- she's essentially a nun; I can find a figure.

The other? I really envision a bad-ass babe in SpaceMarine armor. Is there such a thing?

On that thought, does 40K have any serious butt-kicking females at all?

Sure, there's Lelith, and some of the Wytches. Are they HQ slots, though? Are they "leading the charge"?

In WarMachine, there's no end of sure-fire hell raising women. Sorscha, Haley, Deneghra, Fiora, Ashlynn, Kaelyssa- each faction has a killer; no-holds barred lady to lead the forces. Hell, the AVATAR of MENOTH is a woman.

Is it too much to ask for a girl with great gams in armor for my 40K shenanigans?

Failing what I really want, what can I convert? Do I need a degree in greenstuffing to get anything close?

Friday, October 29, 2010

[WOD] The Hedge Tales, Week 1- The Induction

When I was working on my Changeling character for the World Of Darkness game I play in, my ST had me roll randomly to determine if my character remembered her life before Arcadi as well as if she had any memories from inside the Hedge.

Eiel has no memories at all of her life before the Hedge. She does, however, remember her time in captivity very vividly.

My ST asked me to come up with some ideas of what my vision of her Durance and captivity was like. Here is the first of five stories I wrote with that intention. Hope you enjoy!

I entered the oversize ballroom, clearly examining my surroundings. The cathedral ceilings are gilt in gold, the walls blanketed with soft frescoes and endless tapestry. Chandeliers and sconces emit strange flickering light over the cavernous room, playing tricks on my eyes. The mere beauty of my surroundings is hard to fathom, and the mood of the hall strikes an odd chord in my heart. Shadows dance a jig in the corner, yet a strange melancholy rests in my head.

The music is played by what I see as moving anthropomorphic instruments. I have a stray thought of a dancing candlestick, teapot and armoire. I vaguely remember these images, but I can't recall why. As I move closer, I notice the musicians in more detail. I'm strangely moved by the cello, a curious cross of flesh and strings. I see her face in the scrollwork of the head, her ears poked with ivory pegs, like nightmare jewelry. Her slender neck is the fretboard, and her dark brown hair has been worked into strings. Her broad back and shoulders are softly rounded, with her wide chest bearing the bridge and crosspiece. Her arms act as the bow, moving across the strings with the music. Her wide lines come in sharply around her abdomen, with her torso flayed open for the “F” holes. Her hips and pelvis form the base of the instrument, coming to a gentle rounded stop, with her legs crossed and nearly fused together as the endpin.

There's a table stretching from one end of the room to the other, exquisitely appointed with chargers, monogrammed linens, crystal, silver, gold and breathtaking china. The table is laden with sumptuous foodstuffs; every dish more delectable looking than the next. Other appetites are addressed as well, with narcotics, pornography, libations, and more laid out for the taking. The air is thick with aromas and the scent of wax from the candles lighting the table.

A cool scrutiny presses heavily on the room, it's presence active and intense among the occupants. Like frosty breath puffing from a warm mouth, the air moves with chilly vapors. The varied beings here all react in some way, aware of each touch, each sensation and each action as the hall settles into an icy pall, thick with investigation and examination.

There are others here, aside from the quartet of living instruments; about eight in total. A few sit carefully, heads held high, chatting amiably yet discussing nothing of importance. Their eyes are riveted straight ahead, and their bodies kept remarkably still as they convey no emotion nor show any indication of the table or the surroundings.

There are some who have managed to control the outward expressions of desire, interest, or hunger. Their latent desires are betrayed however; through a quick flicker of their eyes, a nod of their head or the slightest twitch of their fingers. The electric heat of their pique rests in my nose, on my tongue, on the hair on my neck.

A fierce and primal part of me responds, eager to pounce on the morsels of arousal. My ears perk forward, my nostrils flare, my haunches tighten and I gather myself in anticipation of a quick strike.

The room goes cold, the air nearly frozen in time. I hear a crisp, cool voice murmuring to me. The question is simple enough, but loaded with malice.

“Whose desire is the strongest? Who would you find as your prey, if I were to let you hunt?”

It's the briefest of signals; the slightest of hints. The cold presence thickens and falls upon the target suddenly. The crystalline form of her body shimmers with ripples of color as she devours the emotion, and I'm crushed under her weight. I should know by now, but I can't help myself. I'm still too greedy.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

[Blogging] [40K] WTF? FTW!

 I blame it all on those guys at TheBack40K.

Some of these guys used to game at the FLGS and then moved away. Somehow I stumbled on their blog, and keenly followed their escapades from afar. I found them about a week before Ron featured them on FTW. I promptly bragged about my "local boys done good" to all my current friends, and continued following TheBack40K guys.

It was Sandwyrm that got me to realize PICTURES would make a world of difference on my blog, and thus my WM mechs and TheDude's Mexi-Marines started showing up on a sorta- regular basis. When I was plugging away a little over two months ago, I never in a MILLION years thought I'd get featured on FTW's Weekly Top Ten. But BAM! here I am:

I know I've been growing (I thought 12 in 7 was crazy? I gained ELEVEN followers in 5 days. That's an average of TWO A DAY!) and I'm beyond grateful. I hope you enjoy my rambunctious, ridiculous self.

As a very special thank you, I have an extraordinary, way fun, ultra-secret surprise waiting in the wings later this week. Stay tuned to see what great stuff I come up with - and take a minute to point out the best underrated blogs YOU know of- so I can return the Followers Bombs!

[HS6E] Hawaii Action (Session 6)

Bricks Are Heavy- L7

Let’s make our way to the parking lot
Coz I know one of us have got to drop
- Skindred, Bruises

I need some kind of promise
Some kind of submission tonight

Ain't it heavy
Ain't the night heavy
-Melissa Etheridge, Ain't It Heavy

The session begins on the Monday morning after LAST session, when the majority of the Ultras fought some super suits on the mountain outside Honolulu. Lisa/Diamond wasn't present for that fight-she was trying to make amends for mouthing off to 'Nani.

Monday morning, Lisa is out doing errands. Lisa hopes to perform massage and physical therapy on the beach to surfers and locals alike. Lisa is now on her way to the City Hall, to file some paperwork and get permits for a small business.As she heads down the road, Lisa sees something flying overhead- which strikes her as a bit unusual, as she has not seen any air traffic in a couple days. Lisa is curious, and decides to check out the contrails as they move over head.

Lisa follows the contrails around for a while, but can't get any sort of grip on what's going on. She decides to try to get a better view, and heads over to Nokia Tower. [I actually meant The Aloha Tower, but it's irrelevant as the GM went with my goof and all turned out well.] She tries to go up the stairs, but the first one cracks and Lisa is stuck on the ground. She turns to follow the contrails again [it's actually more than one] and sees a parking garage next door.

She heads on up, watching the zooming trails. As she watches, she sees one of them stop on the top of a building nearby. She sees a tall figure in a magenta battlesuit style thing, scanning the horizon. This gets her attention even more fully, and she continues to follow the figures around Honolulu.

What the heck are these guys doing? Weird. 

As she continues to trail the jet-like figures, she sees the second one land on top of a roof. The second suit is massive, at least half again as large as the first one, and red.

That thing is huge! What IS it?

Lisa makes her way over to a pizza place [has a landline phone] and asks to use the phone. She gives the guy a good tip, and she calls Ja'Kel/Jumpshot. She explains the general gist of what's going on, and Jumpshot gathers the rest of the Ultras [except for Freestyle and Syphon] to meet Lisa at the pizza joint. As Lisa is on the phone with Jumpshot, she hears a "whoooooosh, whoomp"  sort of noise. She infers that one of the jet suit guys has landed on the roof of the building. She says as such to Jumpshot and then hangs up the phone.

Lisa goes outside to investigate- casually looking on the roof, and waits for the rest of the gang to appear.

A little later, the other Ultras appear- Jumpshot, SteelWarriror and Jerry Riggs all arrive at the scene. They clue L:isa/Diamond in on the fact that maybe they have faced these battle suits before, but no one sees anything unusual, and there's a bit of recriminations as the group generally disbelieves that Lisa/Diamond actually saw anything.

Lisa gets more than a little frustrated and is about to leave when SteelWarrior decides to check out the roof.

These guys are seriously cramping my style. Maybe I DON'T want to do this after all. 

Shortly after Steel Warrior heads up to the roof, a shot is heard. Steel Warrior is hit, and blasted into the wall across the street.

 See? I wasn't wrong, Something IS here. 

Jumpshot looks up towards the top of the building but sees nothing, [the bad guys can go invisible!] and gets shot by a laser in return. This would normally not be a big deal, but Jumpshot hadn't yet activated his defenses. The burns are gonna leave a mark. Diamond doesn't like this turn of events, but can't get on the roof directly, so she heads over to the parking garage she was on just a few minutes ago.

What the hell? What was that all about? We hadn't even touched them yet.

Once on the roof of the parking garage, Lisa can see one of the two guys she saw previously- the magenta suit. She picks up a light pole, but can't quite make it reach as a bat. So Diamond uses the light pole as a spear, and chucks it across the street- and misses the suit. [These dudes were VERY hard to hit!]  The pole ends up right above the unconscious Steel Warrior, on the building across the street.


Things quiet down- it seems as if the suits have taken off, and Diamond goes down to help Jumpshot. The group calls Agent Williams, who arrives on the scene. There's a jumbled, weird discussion of the events with the point finally being made that the Ultras were attacked without provocation. Lisa takes off to go file her paperwork and after doing so,  heads home.

The other Ultras all end up at Jumpshot's mansion, and then they get in touch with Freestyle for a little conversation and practice using abilities against each other. The later call Diamond, who is home with 'Nani, and invite her to attend the little discussion.

Diamond heads on over to Jumpshot's place. She relents to Freestyle's desire to get a mental picture of the two battlesuits, and lets him take a peek in her head for a moment. The promised 'teamwork building session' breaks down into a long and very infuriating dump on Diamond's inability to fly. Diamond is more than a little mad at this turn of events, and all the ideas for inertia dampering fields just remind her how much she misses her life before weighing 10 tons.

I'd give it all up to be able to surf again. 

Diamond decides to go home- the Ultras are not doing anything to help her, and she's ready to throw in the towel on the whole Ultra thing at the moment.

Before Lisa left for Ja'Kel's place, 'Nani mentioned that she had a surprise for Lisa, and would leave it on the bed. Lisa gets home, and finds :

[Quoting verbatim fromt he GM's note] A lingerie set, black, lacy, thigh high platform boots, not very revealing, with a choker with a padlock on it. The material seems unusually sturdy.

Lisa follows the obvious intentions, and puts the items on. As she puts the boots on, there's no cracking or breaking underneath her, and she doesn't feel as heavy. She puts the choker on, and while the material is somewhat stretchy, as she goes to lock the padlock, the material strengthens, and Lisa can't move as easily as before. She sits on the edge of the bed, and she doesn't make nearly the indentation she normally does.

[This is the end of the session. The GM has told me out of character some of  what is going to happen to Diamond, and I can't wait to see how it goes. He's a truly evil & twisted GM, and I love his imaginative way of doing things.]

Bonus material: My friend Tom painted this HeroClix figure up as Diamond! Check it out!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

[40K] A Newer Player's Questions: Random

It was 40K night last night, so I took the opportunity to watch, ask questions, try to learn, and of course; get more confused in the process. [This is a normal process for me. I'm actually getting a LOT closer to feeling confident about playing a game than I was a month ago.]

So onto the many random, unrelated questions I've gathered recently. I plan to start a series with a more focused set of questions next week. But today, you get random.

1- It has been suggested to me (repeatedly) that I might enjoy Blood Angels since I freely admit to "playing like a brick". I have resisted pretty heavily for a couple reasons.  These include: they don't have a lot of customizable options; They're a lot more mobile than I feel comfortable with (I like go-fast in theory; in practice I lose my mind); They are the new internet rage and seem to have a reputation for being very competitive (which I could not live up to) and lastly- for those of you that know me in real life: They're angels. We know how crazy I get about angels... I think I'd go positively mental trying to do justice to an Angel ARMY.

Can anyone convince me either way that I am wrong or missing a point on these guys?

2- Power of the Machine Spirit is in my Codex, but there's at least a little confusion on how it applies now. Can someone explain it as it works for my army now?

2a- Same goes for Drop Pods. Do I have the old rules or the new ones?

3- Command or Assault Squads apparently "NEED" a ride. I'm still a little fuzzy on why, but I'll believe you because it seems easier that way. If those guys are Terminators (because I tend to change my mind), they CAN'T take a transport. But they can Deep Strike? If that's accurate, is there a benefit or advantage of one over the other?

4- On transports: They look cool, but seem very squishy. The transport in question was a Land Raider. I'm wondering if they are worth my trouble. I heard something about not moving too much and still be able to shoot but failed to ask for more it per turn, or overall that the restriction applies?

5-I have a real and legitimate reason for not being able to use rare earth magnets. Is there something else I can use for modding and modeling?

And, because 40K is more fun with pictures- a shot from last night that was pretty awesome. No real reason, just: it' looked fun.

The Chos in front, facing the LR actually ARE Chaos dudes. The Chaos guys facing the camera, coming OUT of the Raider, are completely modded to "count as" Space Wolves. Grimnar is about to have lunch.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

[Weekly Whimsy] Dice

Welcome to Weekly Whimsy! Discussing dueling dodecahedrons, dancing deciders of destiny, denizens of dicebags and deliverers of defeat.

[I don't think I'll ever get tired of that...onto today's topic!]

Roll With It, Baby- Steve Winwood, Roll With It

We women have a terrible reputation for taking a long time to get ready, and being extra-particular about accessories and styling.

I've stumbled upon an area that puts girls to shame, and it's pretty universal across the board.Guys, girls, old or young, the subject at hand is one that fascinates us all.


Put a gamer in front of a dice display, and you get the same general response all over.- "OOOOOOOOH, shiny!"

Aside from general fascination, there are some things we all share in regards to dice. Things like superstitions, obsessions and silly tendencies.

We've all heard of cursed dice- or worse, cursed people. There are a couple of guys down at the game store who are forbidden from touching other guys' dice for fear of "tainting" them.

Some people collect dice according to special themes- color, according to their army faction, shapes or other inscrutable reasons. TheDude is one of those collectors, with a great assortment according to a particular idea.

Here's a shot of his SPARE dice:

Can you guess the theme?

A better shot, about half full.

This is not a die! It's one of the "Rainbow Ninja"- universally known in our gaming circle. There's a pink one and a blue one, too.

Another one of TheDude's dice. With another die inside it.

And an orange round die.

No idea yet? The Dude collects the weirdest, strangest, most unusual dice he can find. Which usually end up being ugly. Our friends have all gotten in on the action, and bring home some of the craziest dice I've ever seen from conventions, game stores in other towns and other locations unknown. As seen above, he now has a HUGE collection and keeps his spare dice in a huge ice cream bucket. Spares- the ones he doesn't use every day.

These are my dice. The red ones are my spares. The black ones are my regular gaming dice.

This is what's inside my black bag.

These are the dice I use for Eile.

These are some of my favorites- custom dice from our game store! 

Now we have some themed  collections out of the way. Buying dice is pretty personal. Some guys get new dice every convention (TheDude), new game (TheDude) or  new character (TheDude). Some match their dice to their character's outfits. Some take the dice out of the shell and look at them in depth- others just grab whatever looks good. Some guys order straight from the catalog- but we all buy dice in a way that makes sense to us. 

There's even different approaches to dice- Crystal Caste, Game Science and Chessex are all different ways of making a gamer's heart leap with excitement. 

I see a lot of "wishful thinking" with dice- the tendency to sit them with the optimal number facing up, in hopes that doing so will encourage the dice to roll that way more often. 

I also see lots of crazy dice carrying methods. Plastic ziplocks, cigar boxes, dice bags, tupperdudes, deck boxes and much more. I love seeing how they're treated and what we make of them. 

I think we all love dice in some way. Sometimes, they are a pain- like when you play --IG-- or Orks and have cover saves or to hit rolls for 40+ figures. 

So what do you with mass rolls? With the rise of the iPod and iPhone, electronic dice rollers are becoming more common. The apps for deciding outcomes have gotten more sophisticated and easy to use, and some guys have been using them at the store. They certainly have a place and I like them for what they are, but they are not as fun to me as rolling big handfuls of dice.  I remember 20 or more years ago, my dad had a Dragonbone that he used, but it felt more like a remote control than a way to determine chances. 

I love dice- picking them, rolling them, and buying them for TheDude. (Especially really ugly ones!)

Come on and share some of YOUR dice stories!