Batman Second Edition Starter Set Reviews

Got my hands on the following new plastic starter sets from Knight models (all thanks to Leodis Games).

The first thing that strikes you is how small the packaging is now, at a guess we are talking about 30% small footprint than the older blisters which across a range is significant reduction.

First thing we notice in the box is how small the cards have got now. They are now the same size as ‘standard’ cards we see in the majority of games.

This is a double edged sword for people, as the cards take up much less space on the gaming board which is huge BUT as players need a way of tracking their dice/markers during the making the plan and during the turn itself does mean you could have some mistakes occurring as things move about inevitably during a game. Expect lots of 3rd party options to deal with it (nods towards Red Beam).

But now for some shiny models..

The number of pieces are low in general, with the prisoner set all being 1 piece.

Looking at the models I think the scale is still the same so no creep like other game systems recently 😉

So the detail is amazing, something that KM are always good at but these are just wow!!

These are going to be a joy to paint.

There is a concern with the resin/plastic though some of thin pieces have feel that they could be a little brittle.

My sword did suffer in transit which is sad face but easily fixe.

So overall…

Wow KM have knocked these out of the park!! If this is the future of the quality and price. Truly amazing stuff, and maybe a sign of things for Harry Potter!

If you fancy so of the shiny at a great price make sure you check out Leodis and his Haribo…..sorry and his models 😉

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Art of War Studios Review

Hello, its been a while since I have done any sort of reviewing a mixture of dealing with 2 kids now and general life has meant the blog has limped a long. Hopefully I can get back to the usual updates…

Anyway today I have the pleasure of cracking open one of the Art of War Studio kits in this case we have the new range of sci-fi based terrain pieces know as Neo City HAB module. Plus so of the info-bloc/panels as well.

What makes this even nicer is the addition of acrylic pieces which really do make the whole thing even shinier.

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As always the packs are nice and tidy, I will say this it could be worth checking out their YouTube instruction videos as the module is straight forward enough but some of the bits are a little tricky.

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So much shiny mdf and ooooh look blue acrylic..

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The bottom/ground floor goes together well, the fact you actually have a staircase as well, is just the AoWS guys showing off really 😉 but perfect for those sci-fi RPGs and Infinity. Its worth noting the steps can easily support a 30mm base due to the sort of ‘L’ shape they have.

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Top/1st floor is a little easier to stick together and once dry is still pretty dam sturdy.

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All built and what a sexy thing it is. Now this is as far as I have got with the build as I didn’t want to stick in the acrylic until I have painted it, but the dry fittings suggest the acrylic is as snug as the rest of the kit.

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The left overs a picture I forgot to take is that those acrylic pieces are identical to the mdf pieces the kit comes with anyway!

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Some shiny addition pieces.

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Like the over kits the info-bloc is a lovely addition to any sci-fi table and the nice touches on the acrylic really add to the whole piece. As a whole it is super easy to build (3 pieces of mdf more or less) but the finished article I think you will agree is amazing!

Overall

Now you can buy sci-fi buildings, particularly MDF ones much cheaper than what the AoWS guys are generating but I have to say these new Neocity terrain pieces are some high quality, high finish terrain pieces that are worth every penny (less than £30).

The fact the whole thing is modular and you can easily build up floors and then the addition of the walkways. You could very easily have great fun with these across a whole table….

Plus with all the extra details like the info-bloc the whole range smells of mdf……sort quality I meant quality!!

You want shiny sci-fi terrain then go check out the AoWS guys.

P.S. a time of writing they are having a sale on so even more reason to dive in.

JB Terrain Review

As 40K starts to explode as it always does with a new edition time, I needed some new terrain to cover the board!

There is loads of MDF terrain out there, but I need something that looks good but isn’t too mad or expensive. Step forward a chap I have used before for some other pieces of terrain. Who had exactly that, nice not overly complicated terrain at an amazing prices!!

You can check out his eBay shop here (There is also his Facebook profile as well). This time I came looking at a couple of the ruined buildings which have a decent footprint.

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As you can see I have a couple of different sets so let’s get these bad boys together..

Soooooooooo much mdf the house smells amazing at the moment 😀

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Nice big chunky pieces for my ham-fisted ways…

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The tiny windows are great for calling LoS blocking but also are easy snipped and broken to allow you to have firing areas if you wanted.

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Its big, offers plenty of cover and also allows some height to games, something I have always liked (too much 2Dness happening on my tables).

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Couple of nice details here and there with the broken windows and cracked walls and very cool and add a little something if like me you are too lazy to texture your MDF..

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This one below was the hardest part of the kits I had with the extra little edging to the building, nice touch but be careful with the thin MDF.

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So the builds on all these are realllly easy, in fact you could easily keep them as flat pack and build when you need them as the joins are really tight and as such should stay pretty robust for a while. But like all MDF the layers will split slightly eventually, so caution if you go that route.

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Big enough to hide a Knight, but enough levels that normal troops can also use it. Pretty much perfect for what I wanted.

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So overall great little (big) kits to have around at a really cheap price and these kits are easily made more in tune with some the grim dark dark of the far future by adding some plastic pieces to the walls if you wanted to for more details.

So price then well remember when I said these were cheap how about less than £10 each for a decent sized foot print of MDF? Pretty good right? Now what about if I said that if you contact John directly and say ‘Bear made me do it’

For the next 30 days, he will offer you 20% off ebay prices which lets be honest is an amazing discount! The clock is ticking…

Oh you want the link very well here it is LINKY he is adding to his range all the time so keep your eye out.

Pulp City Starter Review

Hello and welcome to another review, this time I have managed to get my hands on the 2 starter sets for Pulp City. A small skirmish game of super heroes…..sorry Supremes battling each other for no other reason heroes and villains need 🙂

Today I have both starter sets to look at, on both sides of the line, the boxes are really nice, well the models come in a white box but the sleeve is really nice..

You get colourful artwork on the back (including info on what you are getting plus the classes of the supremes in each box), while the front shows off the models themselves in some great looking studio colour schemes. Well-presented boxes all round then but now for the exciting bit.

So whats in the boxes then? Well obviously we get shiny models bit of a short review otherwise.. We also get the character cards which have all the stats and unique actions on them. Usually thing nice bright cards that fit into MtG card sleeve.

The Baddies

The Goodies

What is also nice is each box comes with a poster style version of the quick start rules which are enough for you to get on with a game or two. As you don’t need the full book unless you are going to some of the more advance stuff. The poster also works nicely as a way of looking up rules quickly in the heat of battle.

Now for the actual shiny, on the whole the models are one piece metal models, this makes a change but also pleases me. Sometimes you don’t need models to be in a million pieces to give dynamic looking models. For someone who is very adept at gluing himself to various things the less super glue flying around the better

The detail is really nice on the models, they have made sure that the art imitates the model which is nice and they have kept true a scaling of the models.

What I mean by that is each model is slightly different in size which adds to the feel of individuality you would expect from heroes and villains.

Just overall some really nice fun models, sometimes we have some very serious looking models in this hobby and there is nothing wrong with camping it up on an odd occasion.

So overall the models are easy to put together 😉 while still keeping some nice dynamic poses, do they suffer a little from the flatness of one-piece models? Maybe a little bit but the poses are done in such a way that this is not a problem and they are all pretty nice. OK, maybe Wildman is a little odd and out of proportion but that probably works in his favour.

A fun set of models that are going to be fun to paint up in suitable 80s style.

#MythosDay First Look

Happy Mythos Day everyone.

Kickstarter pledges are raining down upon the masses.

Now I will be doing full reviews of the models when I actually get home and budding. But for now some Fan boy style gushing over a box of goodies 😉

The Rulebook

So it is soft back (but with card cover) while the pages are pretty thick and good quality. The printing is also good and the artwork looks so much better in real life than the digital versions in the pdf.

Cards

We have already covered the different cards in the rules review but in reality life they are really nice.

The station cards are huge and certainly have plenty of space for nice big bold text for those blind among us.. while the tracker cards are small enough to fit in a plastic sleeve with no issue. For easy marking, although I may laminate mine.

The extra quick guide cards are also a nice touch saves flicking through the book for the sanity table.

Models

Now for what we are here for the models, on first inspection mold and flash are pretty low on these models in generally. The resin as you can see captures sooooo much detail it’s scary, so crisp and well spot on. Painters are going to have a whale of a time with these bad boys.

So I will leave you with shiny model pictures till I do my full review of the Cult and Wild born…enjoy;

Mythos Review

Welcome to my review of the Mythos rulebook from Paranoid Miniatures. If you missed out on the guys Kickstarter don’t worry they are so close to retail its just a little….ok a lot exciting.

If you are interested click the logo and that will take you to their website where you can see fluff, art, renders and of course the rules.

That’s right the PM guys are continuing a trend in the hobby in offering free rules, they also have free stat cards (and tracking cards) as well as printable paper dolls. So you really can try before you buy.

But let’s be honest with some really stunning resin models and also a low count for each faction you may as well just buy them all.. Not that I would be doing something like that oh no I have willpower, I am strong, I am…..

Whats it about?

So the game is steeped in the feel of certain H.P.Lovecraft so has that vibe running throughout the models and also the general look of the game. It is based in the 1920s in a City in the US called Providence where the *announcer voice* THE FATE OF HUMANITY WILL BE DECIDED!!

Models

They are shiny, they are resin and they have a feel unlike other stuff around at the moment. Where else can you get a giant crab trying to fight an Egyptian sand man?

The Book

Nice compact book rocking in at 40 page PDF. Which is nicely laid out (check out how the borders change through the book 😉 ), would have loved more fluff in the book but the website does cover this so not too bad at all.

Game Housekeeping

So some quick points just so we are all on the same page, the game is based around D6 (and in most cases its 2D6). Premeasuring is allowed at any point after all if the guiding hand of Cthulhu isn’t helping you hit, then something is wrong.. Everything is in inches as well so nothing surprising here.

The game is played a 3x3ft board and it is suggested you have about a third of the board covered in terrain. So a decent amount of terrain around so plenty of cover to hide/defend is a most.

Each side brings 5 models to the game currently, which includes a Leader, a Myth (the Cult faction this is one and the same), a Familiar and then rounded out with ‘normal’ charcaters. It is a character driven game so with the odd exception everyone is a unique model. So altogether the games are pretty quick so it is easy to get a couple of games in an evening.

Stats

It’s a wargame which means we have stats for all models on the board so what are they?

  • MOV – Movement – This is a 2 numbered stat, with the first number being your walk and second being your charge distance.
  • COM – Combat – As with movement there is 2 numbers the first is the Attack number and the second is Defence
  • RAN – Ranged – Same as combat.
  • ARC – Arcane – Same as combat.
  • MYT – Mythos – This is how much Mythos that a model generates to add to the crew pool (for spending by anyone during the game).
  • WND – Wounds
  • SAN – Sanity – This represents how quickly they go insane and is that stat for Sanity tests

All models have 2 AP to do as they wish in their activation, with the usual sort of thing you would expect. Move for 1 AP, Charge for 2 AP, attack for 1 AP etc.

Abilities on a models card do not cost AP to activate however they may have a Mythos cost associated with them. Which they can use from the crew pool generated at the start of the turn. However there is an additional cost to these abilities will we cover later.

Models also have traits that are always on effects in the game.

Model Cards

Now the model/stat cards for each model are double-sided but this is due to a game mechanic based around the models changing during a game (due to their sanity).

There is a normal size (a grey colouring is used) and the flipped side (red colouring is used). This means a player can end up moving across the different versions of their rules during a game (either on purpose or forced to). This regular flipping brings us to the a models, Tracker card.

These Tracker cards, are a clever way of dealing with the flipping as the tracker card does just that. It tracks wounds, how much sanity is lost as well as any conditions a model has picked up along the way. This means in the heat of battle you don’t rub off the 12 wounds you have already taken (it also means the game board isn’t swimming in tokens if you don’t want it to be)

Sanity

So Sanity and Mythos deserves their own little areas on the review as they dictate so much around the game.

So first we have the Sanity stat for each model, these are for when the are expected to take a Sanity test. This can come from different sources but the most common is when a model is confronted with a Fear causing model.

As well as this each model has a section of Sanity to mark of on the Tracker card (every model has 20 pips to mark off). There are various ways you will need to mark off your Sanity during the game but there is a point things change. There is a coloured pip that is the Sanity Threshold. At the this point you need to start taking Sanity Checks, this is simply a table in the rulebook which you need to roll 2D6 and add the lost Sanity together and compare the result to said table.

These have different effects in the game from doing nothing to increasing your AP, to just outright killing you. So your sanity is precious as you can suddenly die if you burn through it too quickly. To give you an idea losing 7 Sanity means you have reached a point that a spiked roll of those dice could kill you!!!

As well as this threshold we also have in some cases an F (which is usually on the Sanity Threshold pip anyway). This is the indicator for your models forced Flip to their Flipped version, there is also come conditional flips available to models who can change between their versions. However some models don’t have this so once they Flip that’s it for the game they are in crazy mode 😉

Mythos

As mentioned each model in the game adds their Mythos stat to a shared pool which can be spent by any model during their activation. This is a finite resource that although refills each turn, when models die your pool will also reduce.

The main use of Mythos is 2 different things to activate a critical hit or to use an ability that is on their card (cost is noted on the models card).

Whenever you spend Mythos you also lose the same amount of Sanity which takes you closer to the threshold we have already discussed.

So between Mythos and Sanity we have 2 different resource management areas to the game. One affects the whole crew while the other is on the individual and balancing the 2 is going to get more important as the game goes on as you either lose models or start to lose your sanity. A fun little mechanic that makes you plan your activations out and not just burn all the Mythos possible on one model.

Attack Actions

Now onto the meat of the game the smacking/shooting/zapping people dead.

First up we will cover both the Range and Arcane attacks as they both generally happen at distance. The usual pick your target in range and LoS as you would expect is there.

Then the attack and defender both roll 2D6 and add their appropriate stat to the total plus any modifiers like if attacker is engaged or cover etc.

Then we look at the difference if it is a draw nothing happens, if the defender wins they get a free 2” dodge.

Now if the attacker wins (or the defender wins and is also engaging the attacker) then you deal damage equal to the difference in the totals and then they may activate a critical effect.

A critical hit is if you roll a double 6 or you may spend a point of Mythos to activate the critical on a successful hit. Criticals are an additional condition applied to the hit model on top of the damage they suffer.

Combat actions work in a very similar way, you must be in base contact with the model you are hitting and both players roll 2D6 adding the combat stat and any modifiers (additional models involved in the same combat).

However this time there is no dodge if the defender wins, now it is whoever wins the roll does that amount of damage (and triggers criticals) equal to the difference in the totals.

So here we have a system that means both players are involved in the combat outcome but also that the attacker could actually die in their own activation if the dice decide it.

Now the way the wounds are set for normal models, even on a spike dice scenario no-one can one-shot some else. It is very much a game of chipping away at each other to start with but later game when people have taken wounds suddenly the risk/reward increases as you have to gauge if charging into a target may result in you getting squashed.

Generally the attacker stats are higher than the defenders but this is a dice game and nothing is certain..

Disengaging Strikes

Now continuing the nastiness of this mechanic if a model wants to run away/tactical retreat, then the enemy models get a free attack. Where if the activate model wins (as a defender) they get to walk away, if the attacker wins the defender has to stay still. But here is the nasty bit the loser still takes damage as if it was a normal combat action.

Conditions

Conditions are pretty important in the game as they have various effects and the majority come from critical hits and easily tracked on the tracker card 😉

  • Vigour – Grants additional AP to the model to use during current or next activation.
  • Haemorrhage – When the model next activates it suffers 2 wounds and this remains in play till it is removed (spend AP to Recover). It does not stack instead when a model suffers the same conditional gain it takes 2 wounds at that point.
  • Paralysed – A model has it AP reduced to 0 for current/next activation. However it still gets to make defensive rolls (and dodges if it wins).
  • Bleed – The next time the model activates it takes 2 wounds then is removed. Like Haemorrhage further bleed conditions added result in additional 2 wounds at that point.
  • Blind – A model suffering Blind may not make Disengaging Strikes, RAN attacks, ARC attacks or gain Charge bonuses until the end of its next activation.
  • Fatigue – Opposite of Vigour it loses an AP (minimum of 1) during its current/next activation.
  • Burn – A model with Burn suffers -1/-1 to its COM, RAN & ARC. This will remain in play like haemorrhage and any additional burn conditions will instead cause an additional 2 wounds.
  • Drain – A model may not spend Mythos until the end of their next activation.
  • Fear – If a model wants to charge a Fear causing model they must take a Sanity test. If they fail they fail the charge, lose an AP and a point of Sanity. If being charged by a Fear causing model the defender needs to take a Sanity check and on a fail loses a point of Sanity.

Scenarios

There are 5 different scenarios in the rulebook, so this should keep you going for a while. But I would expect more to come soon and it is easy enough to come up with your own.

Overall

This is a great little game, that wont need a major outlays to get you going. With a low model count and standard board for a skirmish game means you can get going easy.

The mechanic is simple and effective will also brings a lot of potential brutality to the game while also keeping both players involved in the game regardless of who actually has activation at any point.

Pros

  • Small model count
  • Simple mechanism
  • Unique and lovely models
  • Dynamic resource management

Cons

  • It isn’t at retail yet
  • Could be too easy to have all the factions..

P.S. I will be doing model reviews as and when I get them in the future (only one faction…)