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About this blog

A Blog on my part in the Hobby Community.

Entries in this blog

Odiamh

Happy Wednesday everyone.  The snow seems to finally be hitting the country around where  I live which means plenty of time to get some Hobby time.  My "Great Aelven Rebasing Project" has slowed down a bit as I am waiting for more bases I have ordered to arrive, but thankfully there is plenty of other Aelves needing my attention.  Not to mention the games that need to be played!

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Recently I purchased some old metal Executioners and other various aelves and I felt it was time to get some paint on them as I make my final push toward winning the Hobby Hero Award for The Rend 4 Club's Hobby season.  I really like the old metal Executioners and they paint up rather quickly so a few hours saw twenty of them completed to tabletop standard.  I also built and primed the two Aelves released so long ago with The Silver Tower game.  I should have these painted up within a few days as well.

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My club mate Matt B. gave me some Pheonix Temple Bits he had lying about from his brief time in Age of Sigmar.  Extra bits are always great and I there was enough to build a Caradryan/Anointed Hero on Foot.  After he was built I knew I had to immediately paint him up and I finally got to use my new Citadel Painting handle for it as well.  It felt great to hold and really kept my hand from fatiguing even slightly.  As you read in my recent post I had a tough showing at a recent one-day event so I thought painting up my Baelwind Vortex would make me feel a bit better and it certainly did the trick.  Hopefully, it can see me to some victories sooner rather than later.

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I also took some time this week to work on updating my local club, Ligonier Legion Wargaming,  Facebook Page as well as work up a club shirt for us as well.  I put up a few initial ideas and received feedback that led to the final design below.  I placed my order and set up a group order for everyone as well.  A good number of us are attending Adepticon this year and hopefully, we can coordinate to all wear them on the same day as we support one another even though we will be playing in different events.

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I was able to get a game in with my good friend Matt H. with my usual Stormcast list versus his, test, Party Boat list.  We played Duality of Death and due to smart tactics from Matt, despite poor shooting rolls, he pulled ahead to win the major by turn four.  Matt has been struggling with Kharadron Overlords for a while now, but he seems to be finding his feet and with the shooting potential I worry for the future of my Khorne Army in my local meta.

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Hopefully, your Hobby is flowing and your dice are rolling to your heart's desire.  Until Friday, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Happy Friday everyone!  Today I wanted to cover a recent one-day tournament I attended hosted by The Rend 4 Club based in Northeast Ohio.  The event was held at their local store, Battlegrounds, in Ravenna, Ohio*.  The store had an excellent set up with their product centralized between two separate rooms for Board and Card games on one side and Dedicated, specially built tables for Warhammer on the other.  The shop was about a three-hour drive from my home, but I was joined by my good friend Aleks for the trip and a day of great games as we represented our club, Ligonier Legion Wargaming.

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If you read the recent interview with Neil you will know he organizes The Rend 4 Club as well as most of their events.  Neil really invested a lot of effort into his first Matched Play Tournament with Awards for Best in each Grand Alliance, Best Overall, Best Painted Model, and Favorite Opponent.  He even brought in the Club Trophy where he has the winners name, from select events throughout the year, engraved.  When Aleks and I walked in we were greeted by some familiar faces we know through the clubs Facebook group as well as everyone else we ran into as we settled in for a day of gaming.  While this was an Ohio clubs event we had great representation from the Pittsburgh area with Mike and Roger from Steel City Sigmar attending as well.  It was great to have locals to cheer on and talk tactics with as we attempted to invade the Ohio scene.  The atmosphere was great and the credit goes to all the players.  We all brought lists to be competitive but throughout the day it was evident that fun was everyone's goal.

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Neil added a very nice touch with nameplates for each player and the club they are most associated with.  It really showed how different clubs can grow together and form a larger and more diverse scene to play Age of Sigmar.  I plan to use this idea for my events going forward.  The other great touch as one of the players traveling from farther away was how the local players brought in snacks and Neil had a basic lunch planned out as well.  Neil event tested out brief post-game interviews with the players after the first round and I really enjoyed participating and watching these on their Facebook page the day after.  All of this, as well as a club Shirt and Dice for the entry fee, made the event worth the drive.  Playing Age of Sigmar and meeting new players was the cherry on top of the day!  

While not the most competitive list I could have brought I had my heart set on taking Blades of Khorne to their first tournament and see how I faired.  I took the Gore Pilgrim's Battalion along with lots of bodies and Heros to capitalize on a few of the scenarios.  I felt confident early in my games, in part to my opponents fearing Skarbrand, but then would quickly watch my army melt before my very eyes.  I have dived into my Hobby Journal to review the game notes to hopefully improve in the future with the army.  We were using Scenarios from The Generals Handbook 2017 as well as some fun Secondary Objectives themed toward each army.

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My first game was not a walk in the park as I faced Tzeentch being run by Tyler of The Rend 4 Club.  The scenario being used was Duality of Death and my higher Hero count gave me hope.  Tyler had an exceptionally painted army with beautiful blending and transitions.  My poor photo skills do not do it justice, but playing with two fully painted armies really took the game to a new level.  I began very aggressive and took priority at the top of the turn.  Sadly I would not win another priority roll in this game which really hurt.  I was able to stay in the game into the final rounds with some unfortunate casting rolls on Tyler's part and careful use of my Blood Tithes points, but losing the priority really kept me on the back foot after my initial push.  Tyler played cautions and it paid off as he was able to take the Major win in the final rounds.  He was a great opponent who made the game fun exciting and fun and I was very happy to have an opponent like him to begin my day win or lose.  Thankfully I was able to score my secondary to keep myself on the mid tables in the next round.

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After judging for the best-painted model and some lunch we went in to round 2 and much to our surprise Aleks and I squared off in Battle for the Pass.  Aleks had brought his custom Free Peoples "Halfing" army.  Up to this point, my Khorne had never beaten his Free Peoples and sadly this day only continued his streak.  Once again I took priority in the first round and pushed very aggressively striking him hard and fast.  While up on points his shooting, as it typically does, began scything through my army with abandon.  While I had some poor dice rolls on my end the biggest was my failure once again to win any of the priority rolls seeing my windows of opportunity close quickly.  I admit there was a moment in this game I got a bit salty with my luck, but Aleks being the true friend he helped me get back on the right mindset to enjoy the game and my day.  Aleks took the Major win and held me from taking any of my secondaries promptly kicking me to the bottom tables.  It is always great to play Aleks and having him around to cheer me, along with the other Pittsburgh crew, was a blessing to help me through a rough day os losses.

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The last game was using the Starstrike Scenario and I typically do well with this type of objective as my mindset is more adept and adapt and overcome then plan ahead so I was hoping to salvage part of my score with a win.  My opponent was Matt, who was bringing a strong Clan Skyre list.  While it felt odd I had a good feeling about having many more bodies on the board them him.  He openly joked that one of the requirements for playing the list was guilt for what it does.  His attitude was jovial and relaxed through the whole game and it was an enjoyable game.  Matt had the choice of priority for the first round and he offered it to me.  I stayed a bit cautious as I waited for the comets to fall and it was a mistake.  While I did have a few emphatic victories, like finally winning a priority roll, his shooting and dishing out of Mortal Wounds had taken out my protection and biggest combat threat in turn two.  Admittedly he bet heavy and put his force on one side of the board prior to any comets dropping as he tried to take me out as soon as he could.  His bet paid off as the comets fell right into his lap.  I managed to score my secondary again this game but winning the scenario slipped through my hands very early on.  Matt and I really got into the game as we cheered for each other and lamented each other's failures, but he had the Major win at the end.  While my third loss it was a great game to finish the day.

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While my performance was poor I managed to stay out of dead last due to my secondaries.  Roger from Steel City Sigmar took the day and it was great to watch his results and cheer him on as he battled it out to take home the top spot for Pittsburgh.  Aleks managed to come away with Best in Order and it was great to see another win for our local area!  Everyone had a great attitude and it made for enjoyable games for all.

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The painting award was also claimed by Mike from Steel City Sigmar, who you might remember I interviewed recently as well.  He puts in maximum effort into each model of his Stormcast Eternals army.  His Stardrake took the prize, but I am confident he could have out any model from his army to compete and still be very likely to have claimed the prize.  There was a lot of exceptional models on display for the award this day and it was a great line up as the judging happened.

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The first event for The Rend 4 was wonderfully run with opponents I hope to play again sooner rather than later.  Congratulations to the winners and to Neil as well for organizing the event and getting the groups together for a day of merriment and Age of Sigmar.  Neil plans to have more events going forward including mixing up the formats to keep it fresh and fun.  After we gathered for a parting shot we headed over to grab a drink.  While my performance on the table was very poor it only made the drink with friends, both new and old, that much better.  it was great to have local friends there as well to cheer each other on chat with one another throughout the day.  Aleks and I parted for our three-hour trip home and chatted for a good portion of the drive about the fun we had, how I could improve my list and play, and excitement to Hobby and play even more!  Be sure to check out The Rend 4 Club's Facebook Page for even more pictures from the day.  Until next week, Happy Hobbying.

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*As a fun side note that got me excited was that this town was full of Black Squirrels.  I am not sure why but these little critters really brightened my day as it was something I had never seen before.  I was informed they were everywhere and are a breed from England that was being studied and ultimately released by a local college.  If you are ever passing through Ravenna, Ohio keep eye out!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  Welcome to my 100th blog post!  I don't know if that is an achievement or not, but it is fun to say nonetheless.  I have had plenty of Hobby over the past week and with the madness of the Holidays coming up I am doing my best to squeeze in as much time to complete all my projects while enjoying the fun with family and friends.  Also, Tomorrow is the last day to take The Big Community Survey put out by the Warhammer Community team.  It is a good chance to submit your feedback to Games Workshop and have a chance at a gift voucher as well.  Be sure to take a few minutes today if you can to complete the survey.


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My "Great Alven Rebasing Project" is still in its infancy, but I have managed to rebase all my Dragons as well as every Infantry Hero I have in my collection.  I am still debating on exactly what my basing scheme will be, but just getting everything on rounds is a big step so I plan to rebase all of my Aelf Armies before I decide.  Chances are I will stick to a unified theme with pieces to match my Stormcast Eternals so I can easily play mixed order and have it look uniform.  The rest of my Bases should be coming in from my online purchases in the next few weeks and I hope to have everything on Rounds before the New Year.  After that is done I will be committing my hobby time to wrapping up some exciting community projects and painting my Adepticon army.

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While rebasing has turned out to be more enjoyable than I originally thought I still need to keep paint flowing off y brush.  Thankfully I have a bunch of Aelves in need of some color and I finished priming them just the other night.  These will be done for Christmas so I can shift my Focus to the previously mentioned projects in the New Year and help me earn some more hobby points for a fun competition for The Rend 4 Club run by Neil who I interviewed recently.  The deadline is the end of the year and I am currently sitting in third and need to push hard to take the win.

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I have also very excited to have my Aelf models be a part of Battletome: The End Times and I have been working to improve my photo quality and sending as many as I can over to Alexander to for review.  I am not sure what all of mine will end up in the book, but I am happy to have contributed even in a small way and I cannot wait for the final document to be released.  

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Speaking of The Rend 4 Club.  They held their first one-day tournament this past Saturday and I was lucky enough to attend along with other great hobbyists for a fun day.  Neil and the store ran a great event and I plan to cover the day in depth with Fridays post so be sure to check back in a few days to see more*.  Until Friday, Happy Hobbying!





*Spoiler: I didn't do well at all.

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Odiamh
Hey Everyone!  Today I will be continuing my series on "Life Lessons and Wargaming".  The point of this article series is to look at the little lessons we learn throughout life and how we can apply these to our Wargaming hobby.  In today's article, I will be exploring both the Success and Failure you will encounter while working toward your goal.  Expect to encounter both of these concepts as you grow and work towards your goals, but you must never let failure discourage you and never being afraid of success.


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Even one of the greatest players of the NBA failed regularly

You might fail, but don't let that bother you all that much though.  Failing is part of life and we have all done it through our lives, usually in small and regular tasks.  While we accept these small moments of failure we typically don't take failing in larger goals and tasks as well as we do in the smaller ones.  However, in order to succeed we need to embrace our failure.  Failure is essential for us to grow and for us to gain knowledge to succeed.  Basically, when you are working toward a goal or task and fail you have learned one of the ways to not achieve that goal or task.

While failure is simply a step in the process of success it is often where most people simply give up believing that this single failure is the end.  They give up despite that fact knowledge has been gained and they are closer to succeeding in their goal or task.  Let's look at an example common in our hobby to explore success and failure a bit more.  You have set yourself the task of winning a gold medal at a painting competition.  This specific goal will alter based on if it is a Local Competition, a National Competition, or even a Global Competition, but the concepts are the same as the concepts are universal toward any goal you set for yourself in life.

There is a painting competition coming up in a few months or so and you set to work, or have been hard at work, on a piece for the competition.  You may have been painting for years or perhaps only a very short while, but you are pouring hours and hours into your piece using all the skills you have accumulated.  Now to get to the level where one feels comfortable in submitting a piece for judging would typically mean they have painted many figures to practice techniques and most likely are considered failures as they work to perfect the technique they are practicing.

However, they should not be considered failures as they each model, each brushstroke has helped to get the technique right that will be used in a competition piece.  I should take a moment to acknowledge the fact that I have never met a competition painter who views their models this way because they are viewed as a step in their process.  These are small steps in the process to our goal of winning a painting competition and are usually viewed as such, but how would not winning the competition be viewed?

It is likely that something that has had, potentially hundreds, of hours put into it would become a source of pride and attachment, which seems totally normal.  The piece is submitted at the painting competition and after a stressful time waiting the result is revealed.  The piece lost and it didn't even receive a finalist pin, which at a lot of higher level events is a win in and of itself.  You failed, there is no way to sugar coat the fact you failed at your goal.  There are two choices after your failure.  Give up on competition, or realize that your failure could be the catalyst for your future success.

The piece might have failed this competition and could possibly succeed in another competition.  What the piece has done is taught you what might not work for the competition, assuming you requested feedback and looked into the detail about the pieces that did win.  You only gained this knowledge by failing your goal, not by succeeding.  If you had won gold in your first competition you might not have asked how to improve and while you accomplished your goal you are ultimately failing at improving for the next event.

Don't be afraid to fail, embrace it when it happens.  I am not advising purposing failing as that is completely counterintuitive to success.  When you do fail, though, don't hide from it, be happy that you have taken another step toward the success of your goal.  Changing how your mind views failure will only help you on your way to succeeding your goals.  Until next week, Happy Hobbying.



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Odiamh

Happy Wednesday everyone!  We are fully into the Holiday season now and I hope you are finding plenty of time to work on your Hobby.  I finally began getting back into my Hobby grove last week and I am trying to kick it up a few levels this week to carry me through to the end of the year.  I am happy to say "The Great Aelven Rebasing Project" is in full swing!  Soon my Aelven forces will be marching to war in The Mortal Realms!

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I decided to get things going with my rebasing by putting some recent acquisitions onto round bases.  While I don't have plans for a Darkling Covens army as of right now I am well on my way when that time comes.  I also took an evening to count all of my Aelf models that are being rebased during the cold winter months that are coming fast.  In total, I have 954 individual Aelf models and thanks to a bit of friendly encouragement, I will add more to ensure I have over 1000 Aelves by mid next year.

I am also very excited to be helping with Battletome: The End Times creator Alexander Nygård of Fjordhammer with some key battle pictures with my newly rebased Aelves.  Hopefully, my photo skills will do this project justice.


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Outside of rebasing units for specific battles, I decided to rebase my Heros first.  I will be sticking with the expected sizes for the Heros but for the older named compendium Heros, I will be upping the size a bit just to give them the presence they deserve on the battlefield. While they will not be used as their older named representations they are still fantastic models that feel right being on slightly larger bases. 

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With rebasing in full swing I finally got around to painting my Orion Model I have had for a while now.  While I am a bit sad that I never fielded him in The World That Was I am still happy I held on to him as he is a great looking model and it was great putting a brush on an Aelf model once again.

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My last bit of Hobby has been purchasing all of the models I need for my Adepticon 2018 Army.  I have about half of what I need so far and in a few weeks, I will have the rest on my Hobby desk.  I plan to crack into that project before the end of December and I plan to do a small article series as the project comes together so expect a lot of With Aelves in the future.  Be sure to come back Friday as I continue my "Life Lessons and Wargaming" article series, until then, Happy Hobbying.

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Odiamh
Hey Everyone!  Today I am happy to bring you another interview with a community leader, Neil.  Neil runs the Rend 4, Age of Sigmar Club located in Northeastern Ohio and has really done well creating a friendly group to share and support hobby with the clubs page on Facebook.  I was lucky enough to get to know Neil on Twitter before finally meeting him at Adepticon this past year.  He participated in the Coalescence event I held at my local club and I will be attending his first club tournament in only a few weeks and I am excited to meet more members of his local scene.  If you are in Ohio be sure to look him and the club up!


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Neil winning a well-deserved prize at Coalescence 2017



Chuck: "Neil, what is your Warhammer Origin story?"

Neil: "When I was 11 yrs old I received my first Warhammer set, it was the 4th ed Elves and Goblins starter box.  My younger brother took goblins while I went for the elves and have loved them ever since.  Over time I picked up some extra heroes for my brothers growing WAAAGH and my Noble Elves to give us strong heroes in our games.  I played all the way through college adding a unit per year while only getting a few games every year with my brother in classic basement hammer style.  Later on, I found a shop in Columbus Ohio called The Guard Tower during 6th and 7th ed that really got me going into the game and hobby even more so until I went Grad School."

"During Grad School, my hobby was mostly listening to Garagehammer and reminiscing about past games, but sadly there wasn't much time outside of my studies.  After grad school, I came back just as The End Times wrapped up and Age of Sigmar began.  I saw it as a great fresh start and dove full in and haven't regretted a day of it."

Chuck: "What Armies do you currently play/own and what do you have on your future hobby table?"

Neil: "I currently own and play Blades of Khorne as my main army.  I also have a small force of Nurgle and a bunch of Tzeentch which are mostly slaves to Darkness.  Outside of that, I have various Aelves I am working on expanding such as Order Draconis, Phoenix Temple, and various units from the old Dark Elf range.  My brother recently gave me his old empire army as well so I plan to build on these in the coming year if possible."


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Chuck: "What is one of your favorite memories of this hobby?"

Neil: "Adepticon 2017 without a doubt.  It was inspiring to me.  I had built up my club which was very rewarding, but going to Adepticon for my first time and getting to talk and play with all the hobby heroes from across the podcasts and Warhammer Community.  It really stuck with me and validated all the effort I put into this Hobby."

Chuck: "How do you balance Hobby, Work, and Family?"

Neil: "I try to Hobby after the kids head to bed.  My wife will be grading papers for her work and I take that time for myself to paint a few hours a week at least.  It is really about sticking to a routine.  Mine typically is going to the gym in the morning, taking care of the kids during the day, spending time with my wife, painting and then to bed."


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Chuck: "What is your favorite part of this hobby?"

Neil: "Community Building.  When I set out to make Rend 4 I wanted to find people who love this Hobby as much as I do.  I love talking to players about what they enjoy and listening to their stories as much as telling them mine.  It is such a joy seeing people have fun at events especially if you had a part in making it happen.  I feel this hobby is the community more than the game itself and it gives meaning to the games and the work we put into all of this."

Chuck: "What is your least favorite part of this hobby?"

Neil: "It used to be painting, but as I did it more I began enjoying the process of painting more and more.  Now. however, it is the members of the community that are more divisive than constructive.  Sometimes it can be negativity for the sake of being negative.  I don't know the purpose of it and I would rather rally around positivity."

Chuck: "You created and also lead "Rend 4: Age of Sigmar Wargaming" club.  Can you tell me a bit about the club?"

Neil: "It is built to have something for everyone, Hobby, gaming, competitions, tournaments, etc...  I intended it to be focused on the local area and branch out to the smaller isolated groups to help connect them all.  I met up with a few locals through an online map I heard about on Twitter and Facebook and I decided to start a club with those locals and I wanted to give everyone a name to rally around with T-Shirts, etc...  I also wanted a place where people can celebrate what others are doing in our community.  Any levels are welcome and we want to encourage and grow by staying positive."


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Chuck: "How has the Age of Sigmar Scene grown in the area and how has the club helped?"

Neil: "Where I live there are two local shops and I would post on the forum for the shops, but I felt like an outsider trying to intervene with people more established at this shop.  It was intimidating, but starting our own Facebook page was a way to help alleviate that feeling.  Originally it was just me posting and try to get the communication going.  I wanted everyone who joined felt included in the group and make sure if someone posted their hobby that someone would respond to engage.  Honestly,  I feel I need to do more, posting flyers and trying to connect the isolated groups out in my area a bit more."

Chuck: "What Challenges, if any, have you encountered growing the club?"

Neil: "It is a challenge getting people motivated to participate.  The barriers to entry monetarily for the game has dropped, but the barrier of entry regarding the social contract and interaction is still high.  It took me quite a while to branch outside of basement gaming and meet new people and I think that is still a challenge overall, especially for new players."


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Chuck: "What are the plans you see for the future of the club?"

Neil: "I want to grow.  Ultimately, I would like to run a two-day Grand Tournament.  I am running some one-day events to get practice currently.  I also plan to travel to other shops in the area more to meet new players and help connect them through the club.  It would be great to grow the connection all the way throughout Ohio creating friendly rivalries across the state between the clubs."

Chuck: "How can someone reach out to you or The Rend 4 Club?"

Neil: "You can follow me on Twitter and search Rend 4 on Facebook and join us there.  Even if you're not in Northeast Ohio we would be happy to have you as part of the Facebook group so please feel free to check out the page to share your love for this game and hobby."

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Be sure to head to the clubs page on Facebook and check it out.  If you haven't followed Neil on Twitter yet be sure to do so as well.  Come back next week as I continue my Article Series "Life Lessons and Wargaming".  Until next week, Happy Hobbying!


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Odiamh

Hey Everyone.  Hope your hobby week has been going strong!  I have finally managed to get over my painting lull I have been in the past few weeks thankfully as my Adepticon Army is going to require quite a bit in the very near future.  Speaking of Adepticon, registration happened this past Friday and events fill up fast.  I signed up for the Age of Sigmar Grand Tournament as well as the Team event.  I am also assisting Paul to run the Narrative event on Thursday which will be a real treat.  Currently, the event is full but waitlisting is never a bad idea, expect more info on this event as we draw near!  It feels good to have my Hobby Train back on track again and some of the motivation was due to the start of the Firestorm Escalation League we kicked off at my local club this past weekend.

If you are in one of the countries that celebrate Thanksgiving I wish you happy feasting and hope you get plenty of time to get some hobby in as well.

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This past Saturday saw my local club begin our Firestorm Escalation League.  We had a nice turnout for the first month and expect a few more to join us as we progress.  I used the basic outline of the Firestorm campaign but added a few other elements and simplified others to have it work for an escalation league to help everyone get their models painted.  We began at 1000pts this month with plans to go to 1500 in December and cap it all off with a 2000pt tournament in January.  There was already a lot of painted models for the first round and it really helped encourage everyone to catch up for next month.

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Our missions are being pulled randomly from the Open War cards to help keep the games varied and fun.  The deck is really great for more relaxed events such as this and it helps prevent burnout on the scenarios in the Generals Handbook as we go into the new year of Conventions and tournaments.

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I am a fan of Trophies as handouts for events.  I enjoy handing out awards just as much as I like winning them so I created some for the conclusion of the League.  I took a piece of artwork for Age of Sigmar, added the club and blog logos as well as the prize name and event name.  I went to a local convenience store to print them out on photo paper for $0.46 each and bought frames for around $1.00 each.  I first did this at Coalescence 2017 and they went over very well so I decided this will be my go-to method for awards going forward.

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As I mentioned above I finally go my Hobby Train back on track and after weeks of slacking off, I finally finished the five Bloodreavers I had on my desk.  Since Blood Reavers are minimum units of ten I decided to use these extra ones on my Bloodthirsters base as it was a bit too barren.  It really helps make the model feel a bit larger I feel and while it is a lot of work for looks I would happily do it again on future models if the opportunity arises.

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Also, the nominations for Warhammer Heros has officially begun.  I love this idea and I hope everyone goes out and nominates someone they think is a true Warhammer Hero!

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May your week be full of Turkey, Pumpkin Pie, and Hobby.  As always be sure to check back Friday for another post.  This week I have an interview with Neil who runs Rend 4: Age of Sigmar War Gaming Club.  Until then, Happy Hobbying! 

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  Today I will be continuing my series on "Life Lessons and Wargaming".  The point of this article series is to look at the little lessons we learn throughout life and how we can apply these to our Wargaming hobby.  In this article, I wish to explore the idea of not focusing on the outcome.  You may think back to my original article where I wrote extensively about visualizing your goal and wonder why I am now telling you to not focus on it.  At first, it can seem that way, but visualizing your goal and not focusing on your outcome are two distinct things.

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Focus on the climb and not the view at the top



Visualizing your goal is essential to achieving your goal as it keeps it at the front of your mind and gives you the clarity on what you are working to accomplish.  However, if you focus only on the outcome of your goal then you will ultimately fail as you lose sight of the all-important hard work that will get you to the outcome you desire.  As time goes on and you are working toward your goal you will begin to lose the passion and motivation in the process of achieving your outcome.

A real-world example would be making more money in your career.  If you focus on making money you will trip up and most likely not make it where you want, but if you focus on the here and now with the process, which in this example is doing your current job to the best of your ability will more likely lead you to the goal of making more money.  So how does this apply to our Wargaming hobby?

Let's assume our goal is organizing and developing a local club to play games with on a regular schedule.  You will most likely begin by enjoying and crafting the idea of a room full of like-minded players enjoying gaming together for a day of fun and dice rolling.  This is a great thing to imagine as you can visualize what your goal is and you can keep it in your mind as you work toward your goal.  However, if you only focus on the outcome you will be distracted from the work and little details that need to be tackled to achieve that goal.  When you set up a club you need a venue, tables, terrain, a way to communicate to your community, and a lot more to really get to your goal.  If you keep daydreaming about the room full of gamers rolling dice you could easily miss that you don't have enough terrain or you lack a way to communicate.  You might show up to your first club day with only one or two other players and maybe no terrain.

At this point, most people will become discouraged and likely give up and their visualized goal will never come to fruition.  Mistakes will happen and you will forget items as it is part of our human nature and those little lessons that we learn as we grow outside of our comfort zones.  However, if we focused on the work and the preparation then our mistakes would be minimized and there is a good chance you would get the word out better and have enough terrain, etc...  Now you may still only have a few people showing up, but by not focusing on the outcome you will see the beginnings of achieving your goal rather than the failure of your goal.

The other key to learning from mistakes that happen as you work toward your goal is by living in the present and focusing on the hard work to achieve your goal will allow you to learn from those mistakes much quicker and prevent repeating them.  If your mind is always cast forward to the outcome then you will likely repeat mistakes and prevent yourself from achieving your visualized goal.  Mistakes will happen, but don't fear them.  Embrace them, learn from them, and move beyond them.

The joy we get from visualizing our hobby goals gives a small sense of satisfaction, even more so when we begin to work toward the goal.  Although a lot of people focus on that goal so much that when the amount of time and work to achieve their goal begins to reveal itself they lose that sense of a satisfaction.  The feeling of satisfaction is tenfold if you put in the work and focus on the process of achieving your goal. It seems odd, but the best way to achieving your goal is to not pursue the goal directly.

Continuing the example of having a successful club to wargame you need to figure out exactly what needs to be done to achieve the goal.  You need to direct your focus on the tasks to achieve your goal and not the goal itself.  Create a Facebook group to communicate and make it look nice and invite community members into the group.  Make sure you have the venue set and there are enough tables to have more then you expect to show up for a club day.  Put in the effort to have enough terrain and mats to game on.  Set up a club day and keep it consistent to create consistency so everyone has an idea of the next club day before you post the details.  Keep posting about events over and over to make sure everyone sees what is happening.

If you direct your energy to the details and hard work of achieving the visualized goal you will find at some point your goal has been achieved without putting the emphasis on the goal.  It is also very likely that by this point your goal might have changed a bit and that is a fantastic thing to happen.  You have begun to enjoy the hard work and the process and subconscious realized your goal will happen as you visualized so you began looking at what is next.  You are working to more than just a single goal.  You are working toward the constant improvement of the club and yourself as a hobbyist.  This idea, no matter if you are using it for Wargaming, Hobbying, or any aspect of life is the real key to thriving and not simply existing.

Ultimately the concept can be broken down living in the present to achieve the future you want.  If you are working toward your hobby goal then focus on the tasks at hand to achieve the goal and let the realization of accomplishing your goal arrive naturally.  Until next time, Happy Hobbying.

Previous Articles in this series:
Life Lessons in Wargaming: Goals and Purpose
Life Lessons in Wargaming: Self-Discipline vs. Self-Control

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone.  I hope your hobby has been going well this past week.  Mine hasn't been as fruitful as I would like with painting and gaming, but despite that I have been busy building lists, reading through warscrolls, looking at points, and diving into some other community projects that have really taken center stage in my mind and hobby.

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A visit to my local game store this past week did give me a chance to play a game of Shadespire.  It was the first time I was able to play Khorne and despite the learning curve I enjoyed their playstyle and I am going to focus on them for my next few games to get a good feel on how I want to build their deck.  I was also able to pick up the new Citadel Miniature Holder and despite never really buying into using cork or an old paint pot with some tack to hold models I must admit I really like the feel of this tool and plan to use it when painting Hero's and side projects.  If you haven't picked one up yet I recommend you do so as it feels great and is very affordable.

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The small bit of painting was getting a bit more color on some Bloodreavers I have been slowly getting through.  I also started looking at painting the Dark Angels I rebased during the release of the latest edition of 40k.  I am not sure when I will dive fully into my 40k army as I have also begun collecting the models I need for my Adepticon Army and with the prospect of over one hundred models to paint in a few months, it might take priority on my desk.

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My local club also hosted an Apocolypse game for 40k this past weekend and while I was unable to join in myself I was able to stop in to watch a round and see all the fun that was going on.  One thing I did realize after taking these pictures is that our club lacks chairs.  Thankfully everyone made due with what was around in the form of rocking chairs and wheelchairs.  Sadly no one utilized the baby high chair against the wall.

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I am currently traveling for work down near Jacksonville Flordia and had a chance to pop into the local Games Workshop store.  The store was impressively large for the small one-man stores I have seen on my travels and while it isn't as large as a lot of FLGS's we have over in the U.S. the store could easily host multiple games comfortably.  Each table had great scenery and the store had a great atmosphere overall.  The manager was working away on trophies for an upcoming event and we had a great time talking about the hobby and our shared passion.  It was a great time and if I find myself back down here in the future I will be bringing an army to get a game or two at this shop.

I hope your hobby is going strong and if you are in a rut with painting like I am set a deadline to help build that urgency to push through it.  I plan to have my Bloodreavers done by weekes end and you can expect to see them painted in next weeks Hobby Update on Wednesday.  Friday I will be back with another installment of my Life Lessons and Wargaming series so be sure to check back then.  Until Friday, Happy Hobbying.

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone.  I recently got to sit down and chat with a local Community builder Mike from one of the local clubs I belong to called Steel City Sigmar to talk about his experiences building the Age of Sigmar Community in the Pittsburgh Area.  The club is one of the bigger groups in the area and if you have seen me around Adepticon or Nova Open you can often find wearing the clubs shirt on one of the days.  Mike is a man after my own heart as he has really involved himself in building the community for Age of Sigmar to connect the separate groups in the area and it was a pleasure to sit down and chat with him about his experience creating the club.

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Mike with a club shirt he made for Dan of AoS Shorts



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Mike, Can you tell me a bit about yourself and how you found yourself in this hobby?
"I got into the hobby at the age of thirteen when I was playing a lot of Magic: The Gathering.  I went into a local hobby store to buy more cards and saw an army of High Elves being played at one of the tables.  I left that day with Dwarfs instead of the Magic cards I went in to buy originally.  Ever since then I played garage Warhammer up until the release of Age of Sigmar and having an official Warhammer Shop opening in our area around the same time.

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What Armies do you play or plan to play in the future?
"Since the release of Age of Sigmar, I was grabbed by the Stormcast Eternals.  I enjoy their narrative and the look of the army.  They also have a great deal of diversity to how they can be played which really keeps me coming back to them again and again.  I have had some interest in starting a Kharadon Overlords, but their one-dimensional play style has held me back from buying an army."

What is your favorite part of this hobby?
"I really love the Age of Sigmar models.  They have all been fantastic and keep getting better and better.  They are packed with so much detail and I find assembling models really scratches my hobby itch."


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What is your least favorite part of this hobby?
"It is painting without a doubt.  I really enjoy playing with painted armies, but I am very obsessive in perfecting my painting on each model to the point of making a chore out of it.  It isn't stopping me from painting mind you, but it is my least favorite part."

What is one of your favorite memories of this hobby?
"It was the first Age of Sigmar tournament held at the newly opened Warhammer Store.  It was the first time I really played with strangers and outside of friend's basements or garages.  Everyone was having fun playing and meeting each other and I felt I had finally become part of the Warhammer Community I had only read about as a garage gamer."

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Can you share your dream hobby goal?
"That is easy.  I dream to head to Warhammer World to meet the people who make the models and the game and play some games there while having a beer from Bugmans."

You created and also lead the Steel City Sigmar Club.  Can you tell me a bit about the club?
"I actually Co-lead it with a great gentleman Jose Cosme and it was created as a club for Age of Sigmar gaming.  The club is built to get players together within the Pittsburgh Region while trying to connect the various smaller communities in the surrounding area.  The idea was really inspired by a podcast by Ben Curry about "Building your Community"."

How has the Age of Sigmar Scene been going in Pittsburgh?
"We have been hosting one event a month at one of the larger stores in the area with an average of twelve people at each event.  There has been a bit of plateau in attendance and we haven't been able to really attract much new blood, but the regular attendees are very committed to the game and the club."

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What Challenges have you encountered as well as any victories in setting up the scene?
"The biggest challenge besides attracting new players to the group is trying to consolidate the separate groups together.  Despite trying a wide array of events it is a struggle to get the groups playing together.  My biggest victory was the first event as seeing the turnout and the fun everyone had really validated all the effort I put into getting it together.  I want to give big thanks to my friend Bill for helping push the event as hard as he did to really get the word out."

What are the plans you see for the future of the club?
"We have had a successful first year of consistent meetups, but my future plan is to connect the different and separate Age of Sigmar groups in the community.  I also hope to really engage the wider community with Social Media as we only have a small Facebook Page at the moment."


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Mike's Stormcast Eternals Army

How can someone reach out to you or Steel City Sigmar?
"We currently have our own dedicated Facebook Page called Steel City Sigmar, but we also post out events to the Pittsburgh Warhammer Fantasy and Age of Sigmar group as well.  You can also email SteelCitySigmar@gmail.com"

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If you are close to the Pittsburgh area be sure to check out the Facebook page for events or even pickup games.  The club usually meets at the end of each month on Sunday for friendly tournaments as well as relaxing hobby days at one of the local shops.  I have been lacking in attendance myself, but hope to remedy that in the coming year.  Until next week, Happy Hobbying!



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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  It has been an exciting weekend of Age of Sigmar with Blood and Glory happening over in the UK where they had some exciting announcements as well as Holy Havoc happening over here in the US.  Twitter was full of great armies and games being played!  While I was not fortunate enough to be attending either of these events my friend Matt was running a one day Age of Sigmar Narrative called Fawkes Hunt at his house which really made for a great end to the weekend.

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While I have been a bit lacking in painting lately I did begin work on five extra Blood Reavers I had around that I plan to use to spruce up my Bloodthirster's base in preparation for an upcoming event I am attending in December run my Neil over at the Rend 4 club on Facebook.

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The Fawkes Hunt event was small with only four players, all close friends, with Matt acting as The Wizard Fawkes as well as the Game Master.  We really had a lot of freedom in adjusting parts of the game and creating cool moments by interacting with The Wizard Fawkes throughout the day and Matt ran a great event with the focus on Fun and telling our Armies Narrative.

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I created up a short narrative for the event using my Khorne with Direct Focus on having one of the other player's army as my nemesis.  I wanted to help set the move for why my bloodthirsty army would be here at all and what my main focus would be.  Ultimately, my goal was to cause Chaos and shed blood.  As I found out Khorne cares not where the blood flows.  Matt also created special spells and abilities we could purchase from The Wizard Fawkes throughout the games with coins we earned while playing.

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Despite it being autumn we had Thunderstorms moving through our area.  Perhaps it was Sigmar's displeasure with me at taking a break from playing Stormcast Eternals.  The storms managed to knock out the power for an hour or so, but thankfully books and dice still work without power and the natural light of Matt's house allowed us to push on through and keep gaming!

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At the end of it all Dave and his mixed Aelves, who were also my nemesis, managed to take a commanding lead and come out on top.  Dave is still a new player, but his focus on gathering up coins and avoiding the politics of Triumph and Treachery helped him secure the treasures and leave with the blessing o The Wizard Fawkes.  It was nice playing in such a casual one-day event with a small group of friends.  We got to hang out, share a meal, and play some Warhammer which will always be a fantastic day in my book.

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I hope your hobby and gaming is moving along nicely as well.  Let me know what you are working on in the comments below.  Please come back on Friday when I will have an interview with Mike who is a prominent member of my local Age of Sigmar Community and one of the Organizers for The Steel City Sigmar Club.  Until then, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone.  Today I wish to continue my series on "Life Lessons and Wargaming".  The point of this series is to take lessons we learn throughout life and how we can apply them to our miniature wargaming hobby.  We often will learn these life lessons and put them to use here and there, but often these lessons are universal and can be used to improve every aspect of our life, including on the tabletop.  The topic for this post is the difference between Self-Discipline and Self-Control and how to use both of these life tools to improve your hobby as well.

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I would like to begin by defining what each tool is before we explore their similarities and differences.  Self-discipline is defined as "Correction and regulation of oneself for the sake of improvement" while Self-control is defined as "Restraint exercised over one's own impulses, emotions, or desires".  Both are very clearly their own tool, but they also work together and work off each other in a cycle of constant improvement.  These tools combined are immensely powerful in wargaming as well as in life.  Looking at Kobe Bryant and his "Black Mamba Mentality" you can see how his self-discipline and self-control were cultivated and used to give him an edge that set him farther above the rest.

Based on my prior article in this series regarding setting goals and having a purpose you may be wondering exactly how to achieve the goal you are visualizing.  Let's look at a new example within wargaming and assume we have the goal of winning first place in a Grand Tournament. The path toward any goal is often quite simple.  If you want to win a Grand Tournament you need to practice a list while studying the games changing meta and examining other high-level player's tactics.  It is not the "How", but the "how do we practice" the "How" that is the most challenging.  The secret to achieving any goal is simply hard work.  These two words are what ends the quest for our goals before we even start, but there is no way around them to get where you see yourself and achieve the goals set for yourself.  So let us get into the hard work of achieving our goal and using the tools of self-discipline and self-control to make hard work simply become work and potentially even fun.

So let's continue with the idea that you wish to win an upcoming Grand Tournament and you are visualizing your goal of holding that first place trophy aloft at the end of the event.  You begin looking at the top lists from various events across the global community and begin to assemble a list.  You need to begin cultivating your self-discipline because the community will focus on something new and change often, sometimes week to week, and it's tempting to chase the new shiny army or jump on the new off boxed game, but you need to have the self-discipline to stay your course and focus on your goal and keep examining your army and playing your army. After a while you will find your interest waning, but not due to any change to your goal.  You will be so far into doing the hard work for your goal, but you might not see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Perhaps you are losing game after game despite adjustments to your list based on your games and studying the meta.  The hard work will not appear to be paying off, but this is simply not true.  At this point, your self-discipline is what will keep you going.  It will keep you adjusting and studying your list.

The hardest part in developing and maintaining your self-discipline is that you will never know when the hard work really begins to pay off.  It is hard to pinpoint just when it begins to click because by maintaining the self-discipline you will be growing, even if you feel as if you are losing every game with your top tier list.  However, at some point, you will be winning more and more of your games and finding the flow of the meta is matching what you are doing just as you are matching the meta.  Each moment spent on studying lists and playing games is a moment closer to achieving your goal.  Use the tool of your self-discipline to become almost obsessive at achieving your goal.

Now how does the tool of self-control help you achieve your goals?  You might feel that self-discipline covers everything regarding self-control, but it does and it doesn't.  Let's continue the example to explore this a bit more.  If a new army that grabs your interest comes out you might want to run out and buy it, but if in doing so you know you will build and play with them a fair bit then you need to use and develop the tool of self-control.  You might have the self-control to buy the new army and set it aside until after you have accomplished your goal, but others do not.  Self-control is not switching armies due to a potential meta shift, it is not making drastic changes that do not appear necessary to your list based on what you are examining in the meta as a whole.  Self-control is choosing to throw yourself against the toughest opponents to improve, it is choosing to do the hard stuff while using your self-discipline to reach that goal through hard work.

Having the self-control will let you maintain your self-discipline.  It will keep you on track toward your goal as your discipline keeps you looking toward your goal.  However, it does not guarantee you will achieve your goal.  You can and will fail on your way to your goal.  Failure is a way in how we learn and you should not be afraid of failure and I will look at Failure in a future article in the series, but for now, know that you will need both self-control and self-discipline to fail and get back up and chase your goal.  Your self-discipline and self-control will only help you become the best hobbyist version of yourself be it in gaming, painting, or any other aspect of our wonderful hobby.

When you use these tools of self-control and self-discipline you develop a mental state that is essential for achieving your goals.  Once this mental state and your discipline and control are cultivated and moving you begin to see the change you are after in order to get to your goals.  To our example, you might find that lists you once feared are nothing to worry about and scenarios that might have put your list on a back foot now become a smaller and smaller hurdle.  Then the discipline and control you put into your work will become a habit and perhaps even enjoyable as you develop your routine around these tools to help you improve and ultimately reach your goal.

There is no way around putting in the hard work to achieve your goal.  Push to be better and always improve and use your self-control and self-discipline to keep the mental edge to get to those goals.  It will not be easy and will not always be fun until you realize that these tools and hard work are getting you closer and closer to your goals.  Let me know how you are using your self-control and self-discipline to push for your goals and develop that mental edge.

Until next week, Happy Hobbying.


Previous Articles in this Series:
Life Lessons and Wargaming: Goals and Purpose



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Odiamh

Happy November everyone!  I hope you had a ghoulish All Hallows Eve as well as a great Parade day for Age of Sigmar Armies on Parade this past Saturday.  I ventured out with my Harvest Sylvaneth and came away with a few awards myself.  I got to spend the day chatting with some local friends and gamers while playing Warhammer Underworld: Shadespire so, all in all, it was a good day of Warhammer despite a few critiques I have for Armies on Parade overall this year.

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I also want to give a shoutout to the Neo's and gamers at the Realms at War 2017 even that happened in the UK this past weekend as well.  My Twitter feed was overflowing with amazing pictures from the Narrative event.  Check out the Hashtag #RAW17 on Twitter to see all the fun! 

This year Games Workshop decided to mix up their event with additional awards and splitting of the two game systems into separate Parade Days.  All these changes were put in place with the intention of improving the event and it is great to see Games Workshop working to improve their events.  however, in my store at least, splitting the event really hurt the overall atmosphere as we do not have an even split amongst the two systems.  I don't feel there was a lack of competition as everyone who joined it at my local store had great looking armies, but the amount of participation suffered greatly.  In all honesty, I prefer to compete and lose against a large number of opponents then win against only a few.  The day's event didn't feel like much of an event and to an outsider looking in would seem to be a typical day at the store. 

I felt that the Store Manager was also left a bit in the dark on how to run with the new changes.  He gave it his all and made the best of what he had, but it was obvious that perhaps he was not provided all the tools he should have had to make the event as big as it could have been.  The final critique I have was seeing how Warhammer Worlds Facebook Page handled their Parade Day.  It followed none of what was posted and instead appeared to run the event as it has the previous year with a single 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place medal and combining all the game systems into a fun and exciting day.  The pictures and my Twitter feed really gave me the feeling their atmosphere was as exciting and fun with a plethora of great Hobbyists out to show off their best work and have a fun day.  It felt odd to see their event run in a similar manner as the rest of the stores across the globe.

Armies on Parade has always been an event I anticipate with a lot of enthusiasm.  Before I was lucky enough to have a Games Workshop store near me I would eagerly scan the pages of White Dwarf to see the entries and hope to one day participate and create armies and boards as amazing as the ones I saw.  Last year was my very first Armies on Parade and it was an exciting atmosphere in the store as gamers from 40k and Age of Sigmar all battled over the coveted 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place medals.  I was humbled to be voted number one and it only inspired me to do even more this year.  I diligently kept up on the posts from the Armies on Parade web page, but I was honestly a bit saddened at the lack of consistent updates that normally help keep the enthusiasm going.  There was never a very clear message on how the parade days would work so it felt a bit more ad-hoc then prior years.

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If you participated in the event, or plan to this weekend in the 40k Parade day and come away with new inspiration or some awards for your hard work I want to offer you my deepest congratulations, despite and hiccups the awards are well deserved.  I do hope Games Workshop continues to work on making the event even better and put forth, even more, of an effort to hyping it up and creating fun atmospheres for the Parade Days while defining the event clearly to the benefit of all.  I know I will be participating next year despite this year's critiques as this will always be an event I look forward to participating in with my fellow hobbyists.

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Sticking with the topic of Armie son Parade I did add a few last minute additions to my board I wanted to keep secret, even from my previous blog post.  I felt I captured the whimsy of Autumn Harvest festivals in my board, but I also wanted a dark aspect almost hidden from first glance.  Above you can see the somewhat subtle additions to the board to give it the creepy Halloween vibe.  

I was also able to complete my Khorne half of the Warhammer Underworlds: Shadespire set.  Just in time for the next expansions to come out and be put on my Hobby table.  It is really a great game and if you haven't had a chance to play it yet I strongly suggest you do.

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May your week be full of Hobby as we venture into the Holiday months and begin planning our armies and projects for the upcoming year.  Be sure to check back Friday as I continue my series "Life Lessons and Wargaming".  Until then, Happy Hobbying.

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  Today I wanted to show you my completed Entry for Armies on Parade 2017.  This weekend Hobbyists from around the world will be heading to their local Warhammer or Games Workshop stores to participate in Age of Sigmar Parade Day.  Last year was my first Armies on Parade as it was also the first year of my local area having an official Warhammer Store outside of Friendly Local Game Stores (FLGS).  I took my Stormcast Eternals on a pretty simple Display Board with a raging river running through and due to fan vote I was able to take Gold and it has driven me to reach outside of my comfort zone and push myself past last years efforts to strive for Gold once again.

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As you may have caught above this Saturday is Parade day for Age of Sigmar which is a change from how Armies on Parade used to be run.  In its prior form, all armies across Age of Sigmar (previously Fantasy), 40k, and lord of the Rings were entered and judged and voted on together with a single Gold, Silver, and Bronze medal being offered to the winners.  The new change sees Age of Sigmar and 40k judged separately and on different days.  They have also added multiple categories with the chance of winning a Gold Pin while everyone who participates gets a Silver Pin.  The new categories for this year are Best Painted, Best Theme, Youngbloods, Best Board (and possibly more).

I am curious as to what the "possibly more" could be as it is stated on the official Armies on Parade website, but sadly they haven't been as proactive on the posts there running up to the event.  I imagine it could be along the lines of "First Army", "Most points painted", etc...  I really find the event enjoyable both before and after having a store able to participate, but I outside of Twitter and White Dwarf there wasn't much build up this year.  Granted it has been very frantic and fun in the way of releases so I cannot complain too much, but those without a shop near are missing out on all the hobby goodness across the world I feel.  Hopefully next year we will see a bigger build-up to the event and even more improvements to the overall structure.

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My Theme this year was to take the 1000pouints of Sylvaneth I have had laying about for the past year or so and create The Harvest Sylvaneth where I would blend the fun of Autumn harvest festivals with a touch of the dark and wet days of fall before winter begins taking its grasp.  A lot of the project was really just going with my gut and not overthinking anyone aspect.  If something looked off I just reworked it until I felt happy with the result, which in hindsight did not happen as often as I would have expected simply jumping in with both feet.

I really focused on painting up the bulk of the army first to get the color's set that I would need to compliment and contrast on my board, but after I felt finished with the army I found myself returning to them as I worked on the display board itself.  While I was viewing them as separate projects coming together they really became a single project where I could not look at one without seeing the other so the board and army really grew together as I neared completion.  It really became an organic project that took on its own life.  

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I plan to take the army to a full 2000pts in the near future despite my earliest intentions to paint it and walk away from it post Armies on Parade.  It was a joy to paint and the quick pace my scheme allowed me to turn out models really keeps the motivation high.  I would be foolish not to include Alarielle as it is a fantastic model and if I am honest I bought these models just for the excuse to buy her new model to paint up.  I think I will also add a few more units of Dryads as well as Drycha and finish up with some more Kurnoth Hunters with Bows and Scythes.  It wouldn't take much to give the army the boost to be competitive on the table.

I also feel that I will revisit the board, although in subtle ways.  I am also considering the large undertaking of buying five more pieces of 2x2 foam and creating an entire game board using this theme with more static terrain built directly on the board such as more fields, hills, and perhaps some ruined cabins.  While I have Terrain as well as an FLG Mat I think a custom made autumn board could be fun to make and use during some fall gaming events for some fun.  The challenge would be keeping ti consistent and as damage free as possible during storage.

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This year with the changes to event and inclusion of new categories I plan on competing for a few specifically.  While I am happy with the painting standard of my army there are plenty of fantastic painters in my local area and will be a heavily contested area.  I decided to put my effort into Best Theme and Best Display Board.  These categories play more to my strengths within the hobby and as I continue to work on improving my painting techniques and skill before next year's Armies on Parade.

One of the other goals for this project was to get more comfortable with colors I do not normally use. This was also the goal of my recently finish Khorne Army that used White as its primary color.  Yellow and Orange have always alluded me in ease o fuse in my painting, but using them throughout this force have given me a new level of comfort for future projects.  With more comfort, I have more flexibility in future armies and projects and hopefully improvement of my skills as a hobbyist overall.

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There was one aspect of the army that gave me pause for thought.  Basing.  I wanted it to match the dark and wet display board, but the army itself has dark tones throughout and I was worried it would blend too much.  Thankfully after some input, I added some Leaf Litter to the bases to give it a bit of brightness against the muddy basing which helped separate it from the display board but still allowing it to be part of the scene as a whole.

I struggled with this same issue on my Khorne.  Basing is one of my weaknesses as that I hope to correct on future armies.  I always tended to be lazy and do the quickest finish in the way of green turf, but this can get very boring unless you put a lot of extra work into the base.  I still wish to rebase all my older armies as part of "My Great Aelf Rebasing Project".  However, I have found myself waffling on if I should rebase them all or simply create a new Aelf Army in line with my "Generated Free City" using new models and sculpts as well as my improved level of painting skill (opposed from when I painted the armies years ago).  Time will tell if the project involves rebasing or a brand new army.

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What has pleased me the most is how well received this army has been amongst friends and different chat groups.  Medals are nice and winning is the goal for Armies on Parade, but the sense of satisfaction and happiness I already have from the compliments and encouragement to continue this army has really motivated me.  I am holding back a tiny bit though as I wish to knock out some small project laying about as well as continue working on my Shadespire armies.  Have no doubt that these won't take long and I will be back into army painting in no time as I just can't seem to stay away from it for too long.

If you are participating in Armies on Parade this weekend I wish you luck in taking Gold.  Regardless you should be proud of completing a project for the event!  If you can post a picture of your project in the comments so we can all check them out.  If you are not participating and I have a Warhammer store nearby I really suggest stopping out to get some inspiration and join in on the fun of Parade Day and consider participating next year.  I will post pictures of my local Parade day on Twitter and I hope to see the feed fill up with everyone's Parade Day pictures as well as pictures from the Realms at War Event that is happening as well over in the UK (#Raw17)!  Until next week, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Happy Wednesday everyone.  It has been an exciting few days with the release of Warhammer Underworlds Shadepsire this past Saturday and Twitter and Whatsapp have been full of wonderfully painted units from the game and some excellent conversions as well.  If you haven't picked up the game yet I highly recommend it and if you want to watch some games played to get a feel for it before dropping the cash there are plenty of videos on Youtube by various people going through games step by step.  There is also a few Facebook groups popping up now as well that are great to join to see peoples hobby and games played.

I also wish to give a shout out to Rhellion who is setting up streaming for games as well as the possibility of playing opponents using cameras and online streaming to bridge players together.  It promises to be exciting and I have been enjoying seeing his idea come to fruition.

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Not only did Warhammer Underworlds Shadespire make its way to my hands, but a good friend of mine picked me a tool missing from my hobby desk, a wet palette as a surprise.  I won't lie I never got used to using one of these, but if I wish to improve my painting I need to make it a regular part of my hobby.

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My good friend Aleks came over Friday night after I picked up my copy of Shadepsire to try it out with me.  I took Stormcast and he took Khorne.  After a short bit of building and grabbing some proxy Liberators, we dove in.  I have watched a fair number of playthroughs on Youtube and felt confident with playing straight away but felt we should go through the quickstart game first.  After a few confusing moments with the quick start we went for the full rules and after a few activations in the first game we had the basics down.  We need to remember Knockbacks better, but we played three solid rounds.

Aleks was a bit skeptical going into the games as you can see in the first picture, but by the end of game three he was a convert and excited to play more and get invested.  That look of his in the final image is deep thought on what army to play with next and in no way smugness in winning two of the three rounds against my Stormcast.  You can follow Aleks journey in his newest Blog on TGA here where you can see his view of the tables.

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I decided to repaint my Sayl and Nightmaw this past week as I was very unhappy with my first attempts on them a month or so ago.  I kept Sayl neutral to any colors associated with the Chaos gods but kept to my White/Black theme matching my Khorne.  I am pleased with how he turned out although the cloak highlights could use more work if I am honest with myself.  Nightmaw received colors from all four Chaos gods although as it felt more right with the model.

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With my Introductory/Demo leagues starting this week for Shadespire I didn't want to waste any time putting painted models on the table for the game.  The gameplay will sell itself, but having painted models will only encourage new people picking up the game to join in.  I decided to kitbash my models to keep the theme matching with my Stormcast Eternal Army and I am very happy with how they came out in the end.  Khorne is coming along, but have a fair bit of work to call them complete.

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Finally this past weekend my friends and I headed off to a local farm to buy pumpkins for our Jack-o-lanterns during the Halloween season.  I give you Grek and Grog, the same Jack-o-lanterns I carve every year for tradition.  Don't forget Armies on Parade is happening this weekend and weekend for Age of Sigmar if you have a Warhammer or Games Workshop store nearby be sure to check it out.  My Friday post will be about my Entry for Armies on Parade and pictures of the finished army and board.  Until then, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  Today I wanted to start a new article series about lessons in life but applying them to our hobby of Miniature Wargaming.  As we mature in our lives we discover little bits of knowledge that we carry with us through our time here on earth.  Some simple while others grander in nature.  Often times we are taught these lessons by a Parent, Close friend, and sometimes through hindsight.  What I find interesting about these lessons is how they can help someone improve their quality of life if the lesson is applied correctly and how they can be applied to every part of one's life.  This includes Miniature Wargaming.

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What can The Terminator tell us about success in Miniature Wargaming?

Today I wish to discuss the lesson on having a goal to give you purpose and having the vision to see the goal to end will make you successful in this hobby.  While I feel everyone knows the benefits of having a goal to a lesser extent I find that they still continue their hobby journey with no substantial goals.  If they do have a goal it is often very short term.  Above you might be confused by the image of Arnold Schwarzenegger, but Vision, Goals, and Success methods he utilizes in his Career from Bodybuilding, Acting, and now Governing are universal and I hope to relate them to you here through the language of Miniature Wargaming. 

A goal is simply defined as "The result or achievement toward which effort is directed".  I would ask you, my reader, to take a moment and write down your Hobby and/or Wargaming Goal.  You may have a few goals or more goals than you find capable of being accomplished.  Now that you have your goals written down separate them into long-term and short-term and ask yourself some of the following questions.  Does your short-term hobby goal help me achieve my long-term hobby goal?  Do you have one key long-term goal for the hobby or many? Which hobby goals give you a sense of purpose for what you are doing and which do not (if any)?  Based on your hobby goals, what is your purpose?

I have done this exercise myself and wish to share it as an example to help with the understanding of what I feel is a necessary part of Wargaming, Hobby, as well as life, having goals.

Long-Term Goal(s):
Unify the U.S. Age of Sigmar Community without Homogenizing
Put out content beneficial for the Age of Sigmar Community
Create lasting friendships with hobbyists within the community around the world

Short-Term Goal(s):
Paint to a higher standard on my next army project
Complete Final Version of U.S. AoS Modular T.O/Player Pack with U.S. AoS Community Group
Add Models to Khorne Army
Add Models to Stormcast Army
Add Models to Sylvaneth Army
Play Aelves as primary army (return to my first love in Warhammer)

The difference between long-term and short-term goals are down to the individual creating the goals, but often times spending a bit of time critically thinking into each goal will sometimes cause a shift of a goal from one camp to another.  For example Completing the U.S. AoS Modular Pack was a long-term goal for me months ago, but as I thought about it more and more I saw it move to a short-term goal this is in part due to the nature of my long-term goals and some comparison between the two categories.  A long-term goal for a new hobbyist might be "Have a fully painted 2000pt army".  There is nothing wrong with this at all as it is a great goal, but over time it is good to know that having another painted army might shift to short-term or even off your goal list entirely.

Over time you might see goals disappear or change as you mature within the hobby and become more confident and begin taking deeper and deeper steps in Wargaming.  If you look above at my list I have noted about adding models to my forces and improving my painting skills, but I don't list anything about painting an army to completion.  A few years ago it would have been top of my list, but where I am at within my hobby journey I have painted numerous armies.  The concept of painting the army I am working on is so natural now that it is not a goal anymore.  It is just part of my hobby, if I begin a new army I will paint it so I have no need to list it as a goal.  The point is to not be afraid to reexamine and readjust your goals as you journey through the hobby.

 You might look at my long-term goals and say "Can you ever complete those?  Why set a goal that might be unreachable?"  My response is "Are you ever done with an army?  Do you feel that competition model is ever good enough?" I feel setting easily obtainable goals is missing the point, at least for the long-term goals.  Now I feel they need to be reasonable and obtainable, but they need to push you outside of that comfort zone so you are always reaching for more.  In every aspect of my life, I utilize goals like this, whether it is in my professional life, home life, lifting at the gym, or in my hobby journey as they give me purpose in what I am doing.

All goals give purpose no matter long-term or short-term or if they are easily attainable or not easily attainable which is the underlying point that can be missed by those who not regularly set or examine their goals.  Without purpose, you will be aimless and it will be near impossible to get very far in your hobby journey without a purpose.  That desire to achieve your goals is what will drive you forward and continually push you to do better than the last time and continually set higher and higher goals for yourself which will, in turn, push you even more.  It is a self-serving circle if you treat it as such and it is entirely for your own benefit to do so.  If you are a regular reader and thank you if you are, I believe you get a sense of my purpose in putting out posts regularly and to the schedule, I put forth.  Imagine if I had no real goal and therefore no purpose or drive to writing my blog, I doubt you would read regularly or at all as I wouldn't have the drive to give you something worth reading.  Early on I will admit I didn't know my purpose, but over time I set a goal for my blog and it has helped me ever since and I hope it comes across to you, the reader, as well.

So at this point, you have set goals and found your purpose with those goals.  So how do you begin achieving those goals?  The easy answer is to just do it and don't waste a minute in achieving the goals you have set for yourself, but even this will set you up to fail.  You need to visualize your goals, ingrain them into you by imagining them to keep focused on working toward them.  If your goal is to have a fully painted army (we will use this goal for the remainder of the article) then imagine that army painted whether you are working on it or out at the movie.  See yourself playing with it on the table and displaying it on a shelf in your room or house.  Perhaps put a few of the finished pieces as a phone or computer wallpaper so you keep seeing it in your mind.  This visualization will continue to inspire you after that first spark of inspiration fades and will help you continue on when you hit some of the low points working toward your goal.  In our example you might not be achieving the exact result you are after or find your color choices are off, but having that inspiration through visualization will help you push on and work through any issue.

Be sure to always give yourself a deadline that gives you a sense of urgency.  Be it an upcoming event, game, or a date of your choosing.  Without this sword above your head you can lose sight and despite you visualization of your goal you may become aimless and lose interest and fail at your goal.  Not that failure is a bad thing, but failure without giving it your all should make you mad.  Mad that you didn't put everything you had to succeed at your goal.  If you are going to fail, fail giving it all you have so you can still hold your head high.

The key, especially through the low times while working toward your goal is to keep doing.  To continue with our example don't ever quit painting your army if you set time aside to paint.  It is so easy to blow it off because you are tired or just don't feel like it at the moment, but the slope gets steep fast and each session is easier and easier to brush off.  The goal is gone and you visualize it less and less and the inspiration is gone.  If you set a goal keep up with working toward it.  Attack the goal and eventually, you will fall in love with the process of achieving that goal.  There are two good sources of external inspiration to help keep you motivated as well.  The first is those who support your visualized goal and offer encouragement.  The second and what I find to be a very good source are those who might feel you cannot accomplish your goal because it is too lofty or unreachable.  Proving this group wrong is great motivation, it lights your fire to not only achieve your goal but surpass it.  While I admit we have a good community with supportive folks you will still find those who might not be convinced that you can achieve your goal as you see it and while they are still supportive overall you can take the bit of doubt to fuel your hobby drive.

The goal of having a painted army requires different tasks that hobbyists can find mundane or tedious.  Sometimes they outrightly hate part of the process.  In our example goal let's look at the painting as this is typically the part people dislike the most or do not enjoy, but through your goal and visualization of the goal, you will begin to enjoy painting.  I am not saying there won't be boring or tedious times during the process, but they won't be an issue because you will find happiness in moving toward completion of your goal the more you do and as such falling love with the process, even if that includes painting.  This is important as by developing a love for the process of completing your goal you remove another barrier to actually working on your goal and remove excuses that keep you from the goal you are visualizing.  While visualizing your goal is tremendously important you must also keep in mind how to track your smaller wins, or goals within the goal if you will.  With our example completing a unit or hero can be considered a small win and they reinforce that you are on your way to achieving your goal of a painted army.  If you can, look for these small victories often to keep the inspiration going strong.

As we explored above goals will change as we move toward them from time to time.  You might find that as you are just about finished painting your army that your goal is now expanding the army or perhaps learning to play it to a high level.  They key here is that your hobby journey may start with a simple goal of painting an army, but it will evolve and the vision of that army will change.  Simply put, the journey does not end.  You have accomplished your original goal, but what has really happened is that you have gone that much deeper on your hobby journey and your goal has grown, your vision changed to be outside easy reach once again and hopefully, you still have the inspiration to chase it and grow alongside the journey.  There is always another step, there is always a way to do something better, there is always more to accomplish if you want it bad enough and can visualize yourself achieving your goals.

As you begin to see the next step as your goals change and grow to keep in mind that simply visualizing your goal is part of achieving the goal, but is not the actual action in achieving your goal.  Seeing that painted army in your head is key, but to achieve it you actually need to paint.  There can be a very uplifting feeling when you visualize your achieved goal, but do not let that feeling reward you, in the same way, that actually finishing the army will have on you.  Look at New Years Resolutions as a source for this false reward.  Each year millions of people resolve to finally get in shape and hit the gyms.  They do for a while, but they did not vision the result properly or they might have let the satisfaction they received by visualizing their ideal body alongside the encouragement from friends and family to work toward this goal be all they needed.  They stop going to the gym every day and eventually stop entirely and the cycle repeats the following year.  The reward should come from the actual accomplishment of your goal which should then inspire you to go after that next step.  You painted your army to completion, be satisfied with the completion, but look to go podium at a local tournament before you ever finish the last brush stroke.

Continue to set your bar higher, move that goal farther as you progress.  You are capable of more than you realize and one day you will realize that you have become the hobbyist you are visualizing yourself as right now.  Even then there will be more work ahead, more goals to reach, but you can do it if you set the goal, visualize the goal, fall in love with the process of achieving your goal, and never be satisfied after you accomplish your goal, stay hungry.

Until next week, Happy Hobbying.


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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  I wrapped up my Army and Display for the upcoming Armies on Parade coming up in a few weeks and decided to begin painting up a few extra models I had around instead of diving into another army right away.  Also with Shadespire out this weekend, I am working on my paint schemes for that as well.  I might stick with my current schemes as they are for my full armies, but an idea put out via the Shadespire Whatsapp chat by Ben Johnson was to paint two versions of your Shadespire force.  One standard and the other for when the models are inspired. I believe I am going to do this for at least one of the armies at the start of the upcoming Leagues I am running for the release of the game locally.

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I have had this little guy since Adepticon 2017 where he came in my Swag Bag.  Being Halloween I decided now was a good time to paint him up for some fun.  Still more I plan to do on him this week.

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I found five Bloodreavers in my bits bin and thought I might paint them up for some fun in a different color scheme then my White Khorne.  Although they might be paired with the Shadespire force to give me a full ten man unit I can treat as a regiment of renown for my army.  Also, I re-primed my Sayl, The Faithless to give him another go with a better paint scheme then I had a while back when I first attempted him with a quick and loose paint job.

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I also got another game in at one of my FLGS with a club mate Jason.  We played Knife to the Heart at 1000pts and after a very bloody battle I took the win with my Khorne but had to retreat to hold an objective at the end.  I might have won the game, but I am pretty sure I displeased Khorne.

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As I have said I have completed my Armies on Display entry for this year and while there might be a few tweaks here and there I am happy with how it came out.  I plan to go into a full post in the next week or so about the project and army about its completion so be sure to check back for that soon.  If you want an early look to follow me on Twitter as always.  Until Friday, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone and happy Friday!  Years ago when I began my hobby journey and began laying Warhammer I never imagined how it would become more than a hobby and truly a part of my life.  I cannot see any future that does not involve Warhammer and Tabletop Wargaming as a key aspect of my life.  Beyond being a healthy and enjoyable hobby I have come to realize, over the past year or so, that it is a community of so many different people.  This community is the single greatest part of this hobby.  There is no doubt that completing your latest model or army is satisfying and making a podium at a tournament is thrilling, but the best part is sharing it with the community to give it true meaning.  My hope for this article is to help you branch more and more into our community (please note this will be from my perspective in the U.S.).

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When you share your hobby with the community you get validity in what you are doing and we have a supportive community that you should connect with as you grow in your hobby.  That is not to say that there are not people who can be critical within the community, but as The Honest Wargamer has pointed out recently this is part of a healthy community.  Now there are people who will be negative for the sake of being negative and people who are positive for the sake of being positive, but they are there no matter what you are doing in life. You shouldn't let this keep you from connecting to the larger community as the more people you have to share your hobby with and chat to will broaden your thoughts and views about the hobby we all share.  It is good to keep in mind that every level is different as cultures and subcultures exist as human nature, but at its core, we are all here for the same thing and that is Age of Sigmar.  The best way I have found to describe this is "Unifying without Homogenizing".  That is my dream for our community.

So how do you connect to this community?  I feel it is best to break down everything down into four levels that I will cover. Local, being your Friendly Local Game Store (FLGS), local friends or club. Regional, being your larger area such as your state or surrounding state for larger events or playing with other clubs.  National, is your country of origin and the major events within that country.  Global is the connection with those in the UK, Europe, Australia, New Zeland, and any other part of the world.

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One of my FLGS

Local:
One of the best ways to connect is to find the closest shop in your area that sells Age of Sigmar.  Chances are they have space to play and you might even see some people playing a game.  If you do walk up and talk to them, but don't interfere with the game.  Chances are they are more than happy to talk about the game, their army, and when they play.  Also, ask the Shop owner if anyone plays the game regularly and see if you can stop in when they usually play to connect with them.  It is very possible the shop has a Facebook page or that there is a local club with a Facebook group you can follow or join to begin playing at local club days that you might not have even known are happening close to you.  It is also good to see if you have any friends who have interest in the game who can join you in their own hobby journey.

There is a possibility that there is no one really playing the game and in this instance, you have the opportunity to plant your flag and begin building your own community.  At this stage, it is a great idea to begin looking for Age of Sigmar Blogs (like the one you are reading now) as well as Youtube Channels and Podcasts.  These content producers are often looking at the National and Global already and help you connect the community in their own ways.  There is also a The Grand Alliance forum which is a great way to begin connecting to every level of the community and discuss Age of Sigmar.  On top of all of this Games Workshop has the Warhammer Community page to help keep you informed as well with daily articles being posted.

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Midwest Meltdown 2017

Regional:
You know have a local group you play games with on a regular basis and that is fantastic, but how do you grow from there within the community and continue to connect yourself?  Begin to look on Facebook for groups based on a part of your country, state, or even your closest large metro city.  There is a very good chance there are more FLGS the farther you branch out into your region and find the Facebook pages for larger areas you can usually see when clubs within your region meet or maybe even run tournaments that you could attend.  Reaching out to people on Facebook can help you connect your club to other clubs to form a larger and larger scene.  You can even visit the Facebook Pages of the farther away FLGS and often times post there to find players from that area.  On these group more Regional Facebook Pages you will also see events such as Grand Tournaments (GT's)  that may be a one-day or two-day event.

These are fantastic ways to connect more to the community as people are often willing to travel a bit for these events so you get to meet, play, and hang out with fellow hobbyists from across your region.  At this point, it is great to look into using Twitter as well and exchanging Twitter handles with people within your region.  The Age of Sigmar community has a strong presence on Twitter as it was a refuge after The End Times and it has retained a strong presence even as Facebook pages for the game grew.  Twitter will be useful in the higher levels as well.

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Nova Open 2017

Nationally:
When you begin looking at the National Age of Sigmar Community you will undoubtedly be looking at a few major events that draw in wargamers from Age of Sigmar and many other game systems to a single place.  In the U.S. the biggest three are Adepticon, Las Vegas Open, and Nova Open.  These events will be across all forms of Social Media including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram as well as having their own dedicated websites where they post all the detailed information for the event.  These events will fill up the Twitter Feeds and Facebook Groups as they draw near as people from all across your country will travel to share in our Hobby.

We often times see people from other countries traveling to these events as well.  Just as it was with the Regional events it is a great time to make more friends and connect with them on Twitter and Facebook to keep in contact.  These are the top events and you can often times talk and chat with the podcasters, bloggers, and Youtubers and never be afraid to go say Hi.  We are all just passionate Age of Sigmar players just like everyone else and I know I love to talk about Warhammer as much as possible to anyone.  Not only are these events amazing times, but you will walk away with new friends of similar interests and a connection to the game at a very broad level.

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Warhammer World Age of Sigmar Grand Final 2017

Global:
When you begin connecting nationally you will encounter those who connect globally and by doing that will begin to connect you globally as well.  If you are following Podcasts, Blogs, Youtube Channels, and The Warhammer Community site you are aware of what is going on with the Global Community.  Also if you are on Twitter and Facebook as well as following or friending players from across the globe you are already interacting with the Global Community.

One more layer you could look at is asking to be added to a Whatsapp grout for a specific army or other various Age of Sigmar related Whatsapp groups.  The last big step, which is one I need to take myself, is to travel to another country to play in one of their major events to make even more connections to the countries community and create our Global Age of Sigmar Community.

This is no way a set roadmap you need to follow as you could just as easily attend one of the National Events without having a local club or friends who play, but I encourage you to try to create connections at all levels as it will enrich the other levels within this community.  I am sure I have missed items as well so if I have please mention it in the comments to help us all.  Age of Sigmar has a strong community full of great people and I hope you participate at all levels to help the game grow as it will help keep a healthy and active community while bringing more awareness to our game.  If you have a link to a Facebook group, Blog, Youtube Channel, or even to your Twitter please post it in the comments as well.  I am also very happy to chat more about this as I love thinking about and working to grow the Age of Sigmar Community so feel free to reach out to me.

Until next week, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  It has been a flurry of Hobby for me this past week as the approaching date for Armies on Parade draws near.  Thankfully taking a drybrush technique for the bulk of the army has paid off and I have turned out just over 1000pts for my display board as well as three Citadel Woods.  My Harvest Sylvaneth really came together quickly at a decent Tabletop Quality and I it was fun to use bright colors such as orange and yellow which I don't normally use while painting with any regularity.

I still need to base the army, but the basing will be similar to how I am making my display board so I will do that all of once instead of making two smaller batches of the basing texture paint.  There is quite a number of pictures below of the painted force.  I doubt I will get to it before Parade Day, but I do plan to add more to the army int he future to be able to field a fun 2000pt army with Alarielle at its head.

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My Spite Revenants surprising became my favorite unit.  They were easy to paint up nicely and had more character than I originally thought.  I went bold with the choice of yellow, but I think it really paid off in the end and they really stand out in the army. 

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While similar in some aspects to the Spite Revenants the weapon and the head difference really changed up the look and added much more to look at while painting the model.  I decided to do the standard ghostly weapon color for lack of any other idea and it really adds a cool color to the army that I am happy with, but I do need to go back eventually and add some edge highlights to these weapons.  If possible I will do it before Parade day.

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I only have ten Dryads at the moment, but they were the quickest unit to paint up with dry brushing as expected so adding twenty more in the next few weeks isn't out of the question, but the display board will take priority in prep for Parade Day.

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While looking at the army as a whole I would rather have some added range with my Kurnoth Hunters wielding bows, but I wanted to keep to the theme of Autumn Harvest so Scythes seemed more appropriate.

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I had spare Dryads so I converted them up as a Branch Wych and a Branchwraith.  I do plan to buy the actual sculpts in the future and when I do these will become unit champions.

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Long ago when I built some of this force as part of my Wood Elf army I wanted to see my Treeman wield a spear alongside all of his Elven allies.  The plus side is I could use him as a Spirit of Durthu or a Treelord Ancient in my future games.

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Any Sylvaneth army isn't complete without a set of Sylvaneth Woods.  If you are wondering I did glue the trees down, but I positioned them to give as much clearance as possible to move through during gameplay.  After a brief look at these finish woods on my Display Board, they really become a focal point and add a nice frame to the army.

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I was also able to get a 2000pt game in against a local clubmate Jason.  My Khorne versus his Nighthaunt Nighthaunt.  It was a bloody game and while Jason could have won the scenario by retreating he decided that going all in was a much more exciting way to play a friendly game.  It was bloody and Khorne reveled in the killing to take the win! Let me know if you are working on your display for Armies on Parade and I would love to see some work in progress as well.  Until Friday, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone.  This past week we have seen a debate regarding the controversial topic of requiring specific paint schemes to unlock certain battalion rules in Age of Sigmar.  We saw precursors of this with Stormcast Eternals and Kharadron Overlords Battletomes, but the new Season of War: Firestorm campaign box has added additional bonuses to specific Free Cities from The Mortal Realms.  I want to be upfront from the beginning that I respect the debate and those debating it as arguments for and against the handling of these new rules have validity.  I feel the debate is necessary, but it has overshadowed other great things part of this release.

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The extra battalions, in essence, add free formation rules for a specific set of allies with the requirement being that the army you deploy are from the set list of allies and are painted in the scheme of the Free City.  No need to pay extra points and they can be in addition to battalions you can buy normally if you build your army within an allegiance that is part of the set list of allies.  The only requirement is that your army is from specific factions and, controversially, it is painted in the colors of the Free City.

The debates have been heated in some cases and civil in others.  I have seen both sides to the argument bring valid points to the debate as well.  There is a topic thread going on over at The Grand Alliance as well if you wish to check it out.  I don't plan on going into the debate here despite what the title of the post might indicate because T.O.'s will make their call on the subject in their event packs.  Some will require the painting specifications as per the written wording while others will not.  This decision will not be a deciding factor in what events I will attend.

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What has really got worried about the debate is how it has overshadowed the biggest part of this release.  When Age of Sigmar began we saw Stormcast Eternals fighting back against Chaos and saving people who managed, against all odds, to survive The Age of Chaos.  The shattered remanents of all the cultures were clinging to the thought of surviving another day, but hope grew after Sigmars triumphant return.

That hope was Season of War: Seeds of Hope campaign which was a great event that inspired a lot of exciting games as we all enthusiasm in tracking how our allegiance was doing in our respective cities and perhaps most importantly gave us something to anchor ourselves to within The Mortal Realms.  Recently we had the release of Season of War: Firestorm which is a continuation of the narrative in the form of a map campaign.  It is a great box set and I highly recommend picking one up to run campaigns for your club or gaming friends to enjoy.

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At this point, you might be wondering where I am going with all of this so I will get to the point.  I am not unhappy that this debate has arisen as I see both viewpoints, but respectfully do not count myself in either field.  What I feel is being missed and being overshadowed by this debate is we now have real cities in the realms once more.  That is what I choose to focus on as it is driving my hobby more and more.  Those who are debating and choosing which side of the fence they sit have every right to do so and I respect the arguments both sides are bringing as they all have a validity since Matched Play is a very large part of our Community.  However, I hear very few voices talking about the importance of these cities and what they bring to the lore of Age of Sigmar.

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In 8th ed. Fantasy people proudly painted their models as Reiksgaurd, Saphery, and Barak Var to name a few.  Not everyone did this and many players chose to make their own schemes from a city created by their own imagination, but people rallied their army around places within the lore.  I had a large army of High Elves from Ellyrion, famous for their horses so I almost always added some cavalry to my forces for example as I felt a connection to that place in my mind.  There weren't additional rules at that time so there was no need to worry about a debate such as the one going on, but some of us still wanted to anchor ourselves to a specific city and feel connected to this fantasy world.

The World That Was is gone, but now we have The Mortal Realms.  Instead of Altdorf, we have Greywater Fastness.  We have The Phoenicium to replace The Shrine of Asuryan.  We have places of importance that will anchor our stories and narratives and we have wanted it since the release of Age of Sigmar.  Now we can establish Cities in the Realms as well with tools to help us build our own Free Cities, granted without additional layers of abilities.  Some of the greatest Hobbyists in our Community have been embracing this with their armies for quite some time and I hope to begin building my Free City soon as well.

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To Wrap up my thoughts I worry that things such as "Generating Your Free City" and all the Cities now established within the lore will be lost in the shuffle.  It is a great time to be in the hobby and an even better time for Age of Sigmar as we finally begin diving deeper and deeper into parts of the setting that really give it character.  I hope as the debate settles we will see more and more focus from within our community on these cities and what they each represent as more is revealed about the setting we all know and love.

Until next week, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  This past week has been full of hobby, and gaming (and painting my deck) so as usual here is my current hobby and recently played games.  This past Saturday was an Age of Sigmar Club Day at one of my local clubs.  We played Skirmish and a few rounds of 1000pts matched play using the scenarios from GHB2017.

It was exciting to finally get my freshly painted Blades of Khorne on the table and they had a good showing overall and I learned a few lessons on playing the army as well.  The army wasn't built with a competitive focus, but with a few tweaks and additions, I could turn it into a more competitive force.  I really enjoyed how the army played and the level of synergy and positioning required to do well it is safe to say they are much less forgiving than my Stormcast Eternals.  It looks like I will be busting out the Ulthuan Grey again in the future.

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I was finally able to begin making headway into my Armies on Parade force as well.  I picked up a Rustoleum Camouflage Spray Paint (Earth Brown) to prime my force after hearing it recommended numerous times on Tabletop Minions Youtube Channel.  After the primer dried I can see why it was it has been suggested so often.  It has absolutely no shine and considering its use for painting Camouflage it should not have been a surprise at how Flat it came out.  It is great stuff but is limited in its color range at the moment.

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I plan to work on the army at least a few hours a night as I only have 21 days to complete it all before the big event.  I have a feeling the display board will take just as many hours as the army to complete, but a deadline is the best motivation!

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Don't forget to tune into Warhammer TV on Twitch this weekend to watch the Age of Sigmar Grand Tournament Final Stream.  It promises to be exciting games to watch as well as seeing the Twitter Feeds fill up with Age of Sigmar goodness.  It should help motivate me to get a lot of work done on my Sylvaneth I am hoping.  Until Friday, Happy Hobbying!

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Odiamh

Hey Everyone!  The Warhammer Community team released an article earlier this week on generating a random Free City (Check out the original article here).  The concept really captured my imagination so I wanted to dive into creating a randomly built Free City within Age of Sigmar using the Charts from the Article as well as various other tools online.  I might even paint up a hero or unit to represent a city in the future, but my current project is taking up all my time so a side project like that will have to wait for a bit.

I have always enjoyed tools such as this as it leaves it up to Luck, Fate, or whatever you wish to call it.  The fun of finding out what you might get is a thrill in and of itself, much like opening a random pack of Magic The Gathering Cards I feel.  I don't play Magic The Gathering anymore, but I still buy a blind pack from time to time for the fun of what I might get (hopefully Elves).  After you have the basics from your randomly generated city you can them craft its story in as much detail as you wish.  With the Cities being set within The Mortal Realms almost anything is possible.

To begin building the city we can use the charts from The Warhammer Community Page's Article.  We will also need a few D6 as well to use the charts.  You can roll physical dice, but if you are wanting to build a Free City along with me you can use this Random Dice Generator here.

To Begin we need to generate our Free City Name.  First, we Roll D66 (using 2d6).  My dice came up 52 so I will begin with "Bale".  Secondly, we roll D66 again and my result is 25 so my Free City is named "Bale Port"!
 

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Next, we need to generate a bit more detail about our new City "Bale Port".  First, we will see what Realm or Realms we will be settled by rolling D33 (roll 2d3).  My Result came up as 5 and 6 so it looks like "Bale Port" will be a Twin City.  After 2 more rolls on the chart, Bale Port is a Twin City between the realms of Chamon and Ghur.  Second, we need to see how large our new city will be so we roll a single D6.  I toss the die and get a 5.  It seems "Bale Port" is a decently sized City.  Last we should find out who lives in Bale Port so we go to a single D6 once again and roll it D3 times.  I rolled a 4 so there will be three races making up the sum of the city's populace as I get a bonus roll due to the size of my city.  I roll a 2, 1, and 3 which gives me Aelves, Humans, and Duardin which seems a pretty typical cast of characters.

 

 

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After we have the basic Census of "Bale Port" generated it is time to add the exciting and strange details about our city that we can use to expand upon within our Narrative.  Since I am City Sized I will add 1 to my D6 roll to a maximum of 6 for the Number of Distinguishing Features my City contains.  I roll a 2 and add 1 to give "Bale Port" D3+1 Distinguishing Feature of General Novelty which gives me D3+ 1 Features.  I roll a 4 on the die and then add one for a total of 3 Distinguishing Features

To find out my features I go back to D66.  I roll 25, 52, 46.  "Bale Port" will have a Kharadron Overlords Trading Port, a Notable Freeguild, and a Relic from The World That Was.  Not a bad selection at all.

 

 

 

 

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Next, we need to find out what our city looks like on paper.  We could draw out a map or simply let your imagination dictate how everything is laid out.  However, for our purposes, we will use a City Map Generator that was shared by Runebrush over on The Grand Alliance Thread about the article.


The City Map Generator is located here and after we adjust a few settings we can randomly generate out the city.  Since I have rolled a Twin City I will be making 2 maps to fuse together.

 

 

 

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Now that I have a layout for my city I can begin to see where my Landmarks might be at and begin crafting my story, but before I dive into Bale Ports Narrative I must first find some colors for Bale Ports Flags!  Once again I decided to go to a Random Generator for Colors to see what fate has in store for me.


The Color Scheme Generator I used can be found here.  I let the colors generate a few times and eventually locked on one I liked and proceeded to generate a few more times to find something suitable for my needs.  The colors are a bit dark, but I can work them into my narrative quite well.

 

 

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So we now have everything our city might need except its story.  Why is it here and why is it still here?  Who are the major players and their motives?  How does this Twin City rely on each other for survival?  Now is the time to answer all these questions and the real crafting can begin.  Time to put on my NEO hat and get to work.
 
"Split between the Realms of Ghur and Chamon is the City of Bale Port.  Each Sector was it's own Hamlet without a connection until the Relamgate was discovered and they merged into a single thriving City after the Realm Gate Wars in what was known as The Seeds of Hope. 

The Chamon Sector was founded by the Dispossessed Clan Guinnieson who lost their Mountain Hold during an assault by Tzeentch Daemons.  Despite their defenses, the Daemons found their way into the hold where they began melting into Molten Lead, filling the entire hold and eventually solidifying.  Clan Guinnieson has held a Grudge against Tzeentch ever since and developed a grim nature even for Duardin.  This sector is also home to a Kharadron Overlords Trading Post which offers support in defense as well as trade.  The Trading post is maintained by Clan Guinnieson and sees various Skyports coming and going.  Its reinforced structure offers a safe harbor from the Copper Storms prevalent in the area for their vessels.

The Ghur Sector was is home to Aelves from many walks of life.  Aelves known as Wanderers Keep the sector safe from the outside preferring to stick to the wild over a walled city.  Inside the walls, the core sect of Aelves identifies as part of the Darkling Covens know as The Duskhearts.  They rule with a hard, but fair hand.  They work closely with a group of Scourage Privateers who are given free reign of the docks in exchange for their food, clothing, and if the rumors are true slaves for the unseen, but the still known Daughters of Khaine presence.  The Daughters of Khaine are more than simply tolerated however, they are the keepers of a great artifact.  This artifact is also why Wanderers have kept so close the area and offered their service.  They hold the remnants of  "The Reaper" which to the Wanderers is a legend beyond legend as it was believed to be the greatest of work by a great weaponsmith from the World that Was and during the time long lost was wielded by their ancestors.  The Daughters of Khaine and Darkling Covens also know the legend, but know that the weapon is but a shard of the great blade originally wielded by Khaine himself.

Normally these two different races would be hard pressed to live in peace, but a Freeguild of Notability occupies both halves of the city and while they don't involve themselves in the public affairs of each sector they do garrison and patrol the city as a whole and are the core defenses within the city.  The Freeguild is known as "Amala's Adamant" are veterans who held secure Greywater Fastness during The Seeds of Hope and after boredom set in shortly after setting off for more adventure.  They are who found the Realmgate connecting the cities and have been the guardians of it ever since, which helps to keep the separate sectors working in cooperation.
 
Despite the differences amongst the races within Bale Port, they have found a working relationship that has allowed the city to grow and thrive.  Both sectors rely on the other for support and while tensions run higher than other Twin Cities both sides offer full aid when the other comes under attack.  Both sectors also maintain a small garrison of Honor guard who resides in the opposing sector as a sign of their willingness to work together and to keep an eye on each other as well if they are being truthful.  Together they survive and together they thrive as they all shout "No City for us beyond Bale Port!"
 
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The Banner of Bale Port
 
There you have it, a narrative for my generated city that is even now making me want to create a small army to portray them on the battlefield.  I really encourage everyone to try this exercise for themselves and create your own part in The Mortal Realms and perhaps inspire yourself on your next army!  If you do run through this exercise please let me know as I really enjoy seeing what everyone created or feel free to head over to The Grand Alliance Thread created about others Free Cities.  I truly hope Gamesworkshop continue to give us these tools in the future as they are fun to use and help spur our hobby forward.  Until next week, may your Free City's banner always fly and Happy Hobbying!
 

 

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Odiamh

Hey everyone!  Today I want to show you my completed Blades of Khorne army.  I managed to finally wrap up the painting last week and the basing over the weekend.  It is always exciting to complete an army and really give you a lot of satisfaction on seeing the army laid out as a whole.  I have seen some hobbyists who take a well-deserved break after completing an army to prevent burnout, but for me, the opposite effect happens and I get really excited to jump into my next project.  Thankfully I was able to jump right into my display board for Armies on Parade 2017 and keep the hobby flowing.

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One of the best parts of completing a new army is getting it on the table.  Thankfully this Saturday I will be running Age of Sigmar at my local club and will be able to blood this army properly!  I really need to sit down and figure out how each unit will synergize with the army.  I built and painted this army on what I felt looks cool so I really not sure how to use the army to its fullest effect, but that will be part of the fun!  Although finding a place to display the army will prove to be a challenge.

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Once I do find that space I will have plenty of working space on my current project for Armies on Parade 2017.  I only have three kits to build and the force is currently just shy of 1000pts (in matched play), but I also have three wood's to paint alongside the army as well as a display board.  It is about to get frantic in my hobby space with less than thirty days to do everything.

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I really need to buckle down and keep grinding away at my Armie on Parade project.  With such a small window to complete it a missed day or two could keep me from completing the project to the level that I am aiming to achieve.  Working through a project in such a short space of time might be a future article, so let me know if it sounds interesting as a topic. Also, let me know what you have on your hobby table and until Friday's post.  Happy Hobbying!


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Odiamh
Hey everyone!  Happy Autumn Equinox!  Today I wanted to begin talking about my project and army plans for Armies on Parade 2017.  The date is already fast approaching, but I wanted to ensure I wrapped up my current Khorne army before diving into this one.  As of this post, there are Thirty-Two days before our parade week beings for Age of Sigmar.  On October 23rd Warhammer and Games Workshop stores across the globe will be full of amazing themed and painted Age of Sigmar Armies and I intend to be one of them while looking to earn a Gold place once again.  With the changes to Armies on Parade this year there are different paths for me to accomplish this as well.

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Teaser Poster for my Project

Quite a long time ago, before the ending of The World that Was.  I had hoped to one day create an Autumn themed Wood Elf army.  Autumn is easily my favorite season due to all the festivals, and pumpkin flavored everything.  When I finally got to painting my Wood Elves I went a different route in order to allow mixing of the Elven races due to the End Times lists that could be created, but I put my Trees on hold as they were now Sylvaneth and for the past few years they have sat in my hobby room waiting to be painted, but other projects kept popping up I felt the need to do more.  Stormcast Eternals, Blades of Khorne, and finishing my newly named Aelven models.

I have wrapped up my Khorne and was looking for a new project.  I decided to rebase my old Alef models on to rounds, but that is a very simple project despite the time it will take.  Then I saw Armies on Parade announced for 2017 on the Warhammer Community Website.  I immediately looked to my Khorne as it is freshly painted and painted to a higher level than other armies I own due to my improving skill.  However, I couldn't come up with a unique theme to a board for the army.  The color scheme is unique but beyond that, I haven't put created a narrative for the army.  Then I looked at my unpainted Sylvaneth, resigned to their fate of always being on the back burner and I decided I would paint them and find a fun and unique twist on the olf Autumn theme I wanted to do for so long.

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A glimpse into my Hobby Journal

It was over coffee (Pumpkin Spice Latte if you were wondering) with my wife that the theme struck me and stuck.  We were talking about how much we enjoyed the Fall Harvest Festivals in our area as well as reminiscing about our early days on World of Warcraft and the fun Autumn Holiday events that went on within the game that we spent many hours enjoying over the years.  I thought why not theme my Sylvaneth around this?  So I set to task and drew up a plan and wrote out a list of what I would need.  I don't plan on any extreme or silly conversions on the models themselves, but I plan for tilled fields and Autumn Harvest for basing.

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Some Inspirational Art to help me plan

I wanted to theme the board as a farm in the process of harvesting its crops in preparation for the upcoming festivals I have imagined within my own little slice of the Realm of Life.  I will incorporate my current model's int he army as well as three Citadel Woods as well.  With my plan laid out, I headed off to a local hardware store to pick up some great precut 2'x2' Foam boards as well as some miniature rustic farm tools and equipment from a local craft store.  I am sure there will be more added as the weeks go on, but I had enough to get started with my concept.

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Perhaps an Allarielle is needed to complete this project

I plan to build and prime my models this weekend which shouldn't be much of a challenge as it is only around 1000pts in matched play.  I will prime with a darker brown and go over it with a reddish and lighter brown to help blend the Autumn Foilage that will be prevalent in the force as well.  It will still take quite a bit of effort, but I am up for the challenge.

As I said earlier there have been some changes in Armies of Parade this year that add more award categories to the event.  The first large change is the separation between Age of Sigmar and 40k by having parade weeks separated by games.  My area is very 40k heavy and most of the armies last year were from that system.  That might have helped me stand out and achieve Gold last year, but I like that I will now be competing against other Age of Sigmar armies specifically this year.  They have also offered different categories to win.  Young Bloods, First Army, Monsters and Machines, Best Theme, Best Scenic Board, Best Painted are now all up for grabs and I believe it will add more diversity and participation.  I plan to contend for Best Theme and Best Scenic Board with my project this year and I am excited to really get stuck in with this project.

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Fun Fact:  I carve these same two pumpkin designs every year

I will be posting continues progress here as well as on Twitter and plan to do a full post as the project comes to completion.  If you have a Games Workshop or Warhammer store nearby I highly suggest you participate this year.  Time is running short, but there is nothing like a deadline to complete a project.  If you are working on a display for Armies on Parade let me know as I would love to see what you are planning.  Until next week, Happy Hobbying!


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Odiamh

Hey everyone!  Hope your week is going strong as well as your hobby.  This post comes with a bit of satisfaction as I have completed painting my Blades of Khorne as of last night.  I still have basing to do, but that should be wrapped up by the end of the week allowing me to start into my Harvest Sylvaneth I will be doing for this year's Armies on Parade.  I will go into more detail this next project in my post this Friday.

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I truly saved the best of the army for last as I wrapped up my Bloodthirsters of Insensate Rage and Skarbrand as my last two models to paint up.  I really enjoyed painting the Bloodthirsters from beginning to end.  They have a character about them that I never really appreciated before my Fall to Chaos and I can easily see myself returning to add a few more in the future.  Skarbrand did offer enough variety from the standard Bloodthirster kit as well as providing a bit more of a challenge, but rewarding and enjoyable all the same.

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With only basing left to do I got my first chance to lay out my painted force last night and really appreciate the work I had done.  I typically add heavy washes to my models giving them a dirty darker feeling, but I really wanted the challenge of a bright army that pops on the table and white, a notoriously hard color to paint, was a color I felt I did not have much proficiency with since my White and Red Stormcast are painted with a pure white and a heavy wash.  This army only ever used a pure white with its primer and after completing it I feel very comfortable doing with large areas of white going forward.

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The color palette I used for the army was surprisingly, or maybe unsurprisingly,  limited compared to other armies I have done.  Ulthuan Grey was my primary color with Abaddon Black to contrast.  I used Mephiston Red as a spot color and chose my Browns and Gold to match the warm red.  For the basing I have tossed around many ideas that I received via Twitter and friends, but I want to reveal that alongside the completed army in the next few days.

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I cannot wait to get this army on the table and perhaps add more to it in the near future.  I do need ten more Bloodreavers to get my Horde bonus after all, but I am happy with how it looks now and excited to see what it will do on the table.  I don't feel it will compete on any higher level as the models were chosen from an aesthetic standpoint more than power, but a few adjustments could change the dynamic easily enough I feel.  I would love to know what you think about the army and see what you are working on as well.  For now, I will leave you with the teaser of my next project for the upcoming Armies on Parade that I call "Harvest Sylvaneth".

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Until Friday, Happy Hobbying!


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