04 April 2010

Lots of Excitement, but Not a Lot of Progress

I've spent a little time in the last week or so reading the latest White Dwarf (the one featuring the Blood Angels). In spite of the problems I've had with my now-canceled subscription, the last few issues have been quite motivational for me. I think my excitement comes from the proliferation of articles featuring army building and army painting. Unfortunately all this excitement about projects old and new hasn't really translated into any measurable progress. School and work have pretty well monopolized all of my time. Any time left over is generally wasted.

I've also been trying to help my wife out a little more with the raising of the boy. I don't know if my token efforts are even noticeable, but I am trying. He has finally gotten to the point where either one of us can get him to go to sleep instead of him requiring her each time, so I guess that's progress. He's begun to say a few words, or at least approximations of words that mean certain things. And he's begun to try to imitate the sounds we make when we read books or talk to him. But mostly he just runs around like a maniac intent on destroying everything in his path. At least he's generally good-natured and cute while he does it.

Back to hobbies, I've been thinking about my Space Marines. With the relatively new Space Wolves and the Blood Angels that released today, as well as the vanilla Space Marines, there are a lot of choices. I'd like to try all of the Space Marine types, but I don't want to paint and play three different armies, especially as many of the units overlap somewhat between them. I think I will paint up all of my Space Marines in one paint scheme, and just swap out the special units when I want to play a list from a different book. When I play Blood Angels I can swap in Sanguinary Guard, Baal Predators, and Furioso Dreadnoughts. When I play Space Wolves I can play Wolf Guard and Thunderwolf Cavalry (whenever the models get released). But all the generic stuff can stay the same from force to force, and elements from all of the box sets can be mixed and matched to build them. At least that's the plan.

I have enjoyed the articles about the various Lord of the Rings/War of the Ring armies that the White Dwarf staff have built. It is somewhat discouraging to me that I doubt I'll ever be able to do Lord of the Rings like I want to. All of the models from the range that I've painted so far have been fun and look good when they're done. The background and story are compelling. Pretty much everything about the game excites me, but the models aren't readily available locally and I don't already have a huge stockpile of them. That makes it hard to justify further expansion in that area, especially when I've got so many other projects going on. I'm not sure that I will get around to the game before Games Workshop drops the Lord of the Rings license and the models get more expensive and harder to find. At the moment they seem to be in maintenance mode for the game, releasing a model here and there to fill gaps, but not really pushing it all that hard. Many of the plastic figures are a very good value, but building units made up of metal figures seems very expensive. Really it isn't any more expensive than a metal Warhammer unit or a 40k vehicle, but for some reason I have a psychological aversion to it. I guess the short version is that I really like the Lord of the Rings concept and the range of figures from Games Workshop, but I don't see myself being able to build it up the way I want to.

I've also been a little bit obsessed with the latest version of the Warhammer Fantasy Beastmen. Games Workshop took a lot of the Chaos stuff that I don't care for, and it's entirely possible to build a Beastmen army full of the stuff I like, which is basically anthropomorphized livestock, giants, and spiky boars. I'm especially enamored of the Minotaurs and I would like to get another Giant kit and build a cloven-hoofed Giant. Do I need another army? Certainly not, but need really doesn't come into play in this hobby.

I met a guy in my National Guard unit who along with his wife is into gaming. We are going to get together with them later this month and hopefully get some sort of gaming going. He may even be open to playing one of the Warhammer games, which would be awesome for me and maybe spur me into getting some more painting done.

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