Snare Effect

I’ve been feeling extremely disconnected from my hobby of late. The impetus for that was certainly the unpleasant drama of the late-summer/early-fall, but the ennui’s continued to creep up on me.

Partially it’s the lack of external novelty; there’s nothing in my hobby that I need to buy, and there isn’t much of anything I want to buy. That’s across both CSM and Daemons in 40k–I do want to start running a Skull Cannon after the FAQ changes made it less of a push in CC, but I have 2 Seeker Chariot kits to bash together into my “Caress Cannon”–as well as my lizards and beasts in Fantasy, and my gators in Warmachine/Hordes. I’ve got some other projects and models on the table for 40k, including my kitbashed Heldrake that gets a little bigger whenever I have extra greenstuff. In terms of painting I have, well, everything that wasn’t in the 500 point army I ran back when for a tournament.  I’ve been grinding the detail work on my Noise Marines for a couple of months, and that’s still not counting basing them (my lack of affection for the practice of basing having been well-documented herein).

Fantasy’s surging of late, so there’s a push to focus on that. My lizardman army is assembled to tune of 2k or so, and I’ve got at least a full box of Skinks and a Saurus Oldlood still to put together; that’s all discounting the 3k+ points I picked up earlier this year. They mostly need paint, with final assembly for some of the howdahs on my various beasts. But that’s so, so much paint–even without having to worry about armor and the like, which lizardmen gracefully allow me to avoid. I really backed down off my lizardmen after playing a dozen or so games, primarily because I won so many of them. A winning record’s not something I’m accustomed to worrying about, and lizardmen served me super well even when I was playing them incompetently. I feel guilty about walking away from them, so I hope to get back to them soon and give them some love.

My beastmen are my primary focus, and I’d had high hopes for the Glotkin End Times book. I wasn’t disappointed, per se, but coming out of that book and trying to stay loyal to the beasts leaves me mostly relying on creative mathematics to build a successful army. I’d already planned to use the Nagash book’s undead lore to summon blocks of Tomb Kings archers, and still will. All Glotkin gave me, really, was marks–and on my beastmen that’s at the cost of Champion of Chaos, which I did not want. The Winds of Magic will be great too, to be fair, since it’s been altered to no longer punish my army (unlike my 40k Daemons). Mostly, though, it’s about the marks. The marks will be useful, even if I’m already avoiding the conventional wisdom–giving Gors the Mark of Nurgle so that they’re harder to hit–by planning to give my Gor block Khorne for the frenzy. As I already give them an extra hand weapon, that’s 3 attacks with Hatred. I’m not invested in the MoN on them because Gors still don’t have an armor save, and our meta has pretty heavy ranged fire, which the MoN doesn’t help with.

The main benefit for the beasts, though, is in tricky math that probably comes out to a wash. Basically, I overpay with my Minotaurs for Command models, but the Mark prices are across the board. This means I can mark Minos with Tzeentch (for ward saves on frenzied models) or, more likely, Nurgle (because Minos can usually survive shooting to reach combat, and anything that makes them harder to kill in it will be great). It probably also opens an alternate build for the Ramhorn Helm Doombull, which wears an item that gives free attacks on successful armor saves; giving him the MoT and armor with a ward save will keep him alive from those attacks his armor doesn’t block, and the mark barely increases his overall cost.

I’ll probably investigate adding a few Warriors of Chaos here and there, too, but if I wanted to play them I’d already be doing so. Ogres provide a cheaper version of Minotaurs, but when you start throwing in a bunch of costly, durable models you’re not really playing beastmen. I like being able to mark my chariots, and am interested in looking into how that’ll affect Frenzy; does a Tuskgor chariot with the rule get +4 attacks? A quick search suggests that it does, and at 2 points for that increase, well, sign me up!

That’s all theory, though. It doesn’t lead to me buying anything, and it’s not on the ground, brush-in-hand, hobby work. That’s the area I’m primarily suffering in, because to get my beastmen on the table I have to put a lot of them together. Then prime them. Then paint them. I tend to lose my patience with painting in general, but far more so when painting multiple models the same way (see my issue with my Noise Marines, above). Some folks subscribe to the theory that only the front ranks need a proper paint job, but I have a hard time with that because every one of my models is precious and beloved to me. With my bestigors I’m still assembling arms for them, and I’ve got a box of them as well as a box of gors completely attached to sprues yet.

Warmachine and Hordes seem to be winding down at the store. My wife and I paid our way into the league and are currently, proudly, tied for last place with no points! The point demarcation for the 12-member league is pretty stark; there are a few people clearly trying to get points, and then people who perhaps tried in the first week or two, and then folks who’ve played a game or two and possibly painted a couple models. There’s irony in Privateer Press releasing new starters over the holiday, because if they’d had those available in the first place my wife could have bought and played the models she was actually interested in. No love for the gators though, just another Thornfall kit. I’ve still got all my models in various stages of paintery, but with the league ending and fantasy kicking into gear I’ve got scant impetus to actually finish them, because I’m not sure when I’d be playing them. I’m still working on Barnabas, and primed my Posse and Totem Hunter.

We’ve begun dipping our toes back into the game store community, so more games may get played down the line. I didn’t get a single one in over the break, even with lots of folks off and trying to throw dice and a huge game today, because I’m still at a place where the effort required to pack up and play is greater than the entertainment I anticipate getting out of it.

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