Saturday, 31 December 2016

2016 My Hobby Year In Review

It's funny how certain things happen without you truly realising them at the time and they only become visible when you look back.  Today when I decided to look back on 2016 it occurred to me that I have participated in more hobby activity this year than I have in any year since I left Games Workshop in 2009.  I've done a bunch of painting, a little bit (not enough) of writing and played a ton of different games this year.  For a lot of people in a lot of ways 2016 was really challenging but when I look back on my 2016 hobby time it makes me pretty happy and isn't that the whole point?

Everything old was new again.
2016 was a year where I got reacquainted with a number of games from both the recent and distant past.  Wizards Of The Coast released Curse Of Strahd which is hands down the bast take on Ravenloft in nearly two decades.  My group is currently exploring the Barovian country-side and preparing for their encounter with Strahd.  Prodos Games released a new version of Warzone along with some fantastic new models, I hadn't played Warzone in about 10 years and when I tried this version of the game it was like someone took something I had always enjoyed and made it better without trying to change it too much.  Pulp City got updated and got some new models.  That doesn't sound like something from the way back machine but I think the last time I would have considered myself actively involved in Pulp City would have been 7-8 years ago and my first game back reminded me what great fun it was.

Made some new friends along the way.
I was also introduced to some great new games in 2016.  I picked up Frostgrave in the fall of the previous year but 2016 is when it truly became my primary fantasy miniature game.  I've got to say for any fantasy RPG players out there (especially D20 based) who have ever wanted to try a miniature game I HIGHLY recommend Frostgrave, it will feel extremely familiar and if you play your RPGs with miniatures there's a good chance you already own some or all of the miniatures you will need to play.   The big "new friend" for me was This Is Not A Test by Worlds End Publishing.  This Is Not A Test is a post apocalyptic campaign skirmish game heavily inspired by Fallout that in my opinion has all the best elements of a miniature game.  The entry point is low and easy, the rules have enough  depth to make every group distinct and different without being too crunchy, the campaign system is highly engaging and balanced and the in-game rewards are interesting and fun.  I honestly don't think I have a single gamer friend that wouldn't enjoy This Is Not A Test, I unreservedly endorse it and would be stoked to play it with anyone and everyone in 2017!  (Cat-muties are coming for you Tom Carter!)
I also dipped my toe into Knight Models 3 takes on super  hero games (Batman, Marvel and DC).  I'm really enjoying the figures and I'm planning on playing through the Suicide Squad box campaign with my friend Kevin in 2017.

Got (almost) enough figures done.
My local FLGS Lords Of War in Oakville has run a hobby challenge on their Facebook page and for 2016 I made my goal to average painting a model per day.  I started strong, and I finished strong but somewhere in the middle I lagged and came up a bit short.  In the end I got 324 models done out of a goal of 365.  I feel good about that as 300+ models in a year for a gamer who isn't playing a single large scale miniature game seems respectable.  I think my big goal on that front for 2017 will be to get roughly the same output in terms of miniatures but to increase my output of scenery this coming year.  TTCombat here I come!

Looking ahead to 2017.
In addition to a lot more This Is Not A Test, Pulp City and Warzone I have a few other games I'd like to get into the mix for 2017.
Broken Contract.  I painted my first (of two) forces for Broken Contract in 2016 but the models didn't make it to the tabletop.  I really dig the overall look and feel of the models as well as some of the design choices (check my blog entries tagged "Broken Contract") and I'm really enthusiastic about giving the game a try.  
Konflikt 47.  I got all my basic infantry done for Konflikt 47 this past year and laid my hands on the extra bits and pieces I need (rules, order dice, etc) but it has been a struggle to get some super-science robots and/or tanks.  Hopefully in 2017 I can either find some locally.
Wolsung.  Wolsung is Micro Arts Studios steam-punk skirmish game and as I've become a bit bored with Malifaux over the past year it feels like a new way to game that genre with a fresh take on the genre.  Miniatures got painted but at some point I probably need to get some Victorian-era industrial scenery done to play with.

Well there you have it.  It's probably the classic gamer take on things, I did a lot of gaming but still wish I had done more.  If 2017 is anything like 2016 the best part of it will end up being some game I don't even know exists right now that grabs my interest and leads me down the next rabbit hole.

Thanks to everyone who followed my rambling hobby journey this year and I'll hope you keep reading in 2017.

Happy New Year everyone!


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