Christmas Season Opening Hours

Christmas season opening hours;

25/12/10 – Closed

26/12/10 – Closed

27/12/10 -Closed

28/12/10 – Closed

29 – 31st of Dec – Open us usual!

1/1/10 – Closed

2/1/10 – Closed

3/1/10 Closed

Our opening hours will return to normal on 4/1/11

Blood and Oil Nationals – Clash of the Tyrants – The fickle Dice Gods

Right this is a tad late, I blame this on many things – the Christmas rush, Evil Snowmen besieging Gifts HQ, having to venture into the Warp to rescue Kurt our newest member of staff after he offended the other worldly inhabitants of our packing office (Those of you that read regularly will understand that one, for you first timers our office is haunted….) but the main reasons is some of our photos have been devoured by the internet.

We tried doing from Tron shenanigans to retrieve them but it was all for nought, so with some photos missing this is my account of the fateful day we opened the doors to our great nation and challenged them to play like they have a pair.

(the following is a write up  of the event as I saw it as I was playing in the tournament (always good to get the disclaimer in early…))

Blood and Oils Nationals 6th November…the day a Tyrant fell.

After waking up all together to early I was picked up by our local Press Ganger Stef Ashwell, he was full of beans and ready for the day ahead, I however was not. As with every tournament I go to, I had spent the night before repairing and in the case of two Ravagors building my force and I still had the dried superglue cakeing my fingers to prove it.

After collecting Chris one of my fellow Tyrants and a much needed hit of Monster (other energy drinks are available), I was ready to face the world!

The hall was decked out with more tables and scenery than I had seen outside of the UK Masters, it was a sight to behold. Over the next hour or so the competitors arrived at first in drips and draps and then suddenly in an avalanche of enthusiastic gamers all ready to get down to some Hordes and Warmachine loving.

Round 1

I sat down to face my first opponent Ruth Taylor-Yorke with a Circle Orboros force comprising of Epic Kaya (DAMN YOU KAYA!) a Warp Wolf , a Stalker and a bunch of Tharn with a shaman and Whitemain – I was not looking forward to this, not at all.

The scenario involved us having to take and hold two boxes next to each other and with this in mind I deployed the Epic Thagrosh and his Shredder bombers, this is a simple list:-

Epic Thagrosh

4 x Shredders

2 x Scytheans

1 x full Warmonger unit

1 x Warmonger warchief

I won the dice off and elected to go first, the phrase “Rabid, Run” came up a lot, where I could I got the Shredders into Ruth’s lines and positioned by heavies to deal out some pain…..I popped my Feat.

The extra move and attack dealt with some of the spirals on the Warpwolves and cleared me some room to engage the Ravagers running up my flank, Ruth took her turn and dealt out the pain. All my shredders and one of my Scytheans dropped, I was frankly shocked that on the face of it I was about to lose in turn 2!

Kaya moved about and cast some spells and it was then I realised if I could hit her with a spell from Thaggs the game was mine, needing 9’s to hit I boosted and prayed to dice gods… hit. Kaya stacked it and landed on her face and I like to imagine she rolled on to her back winded and wincing from the pain just in time to see the tree trunk sized claw of a Scythean burry itself in her stomach.

It was a hard won match, had I not killed Kaya, Ruth would have won next turn on victory points and there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it.

Having won on turn 2 I had some time to consume another energy drink (not advisable as a week or so later I was informed I may have hypersensitivity to Caffeine) and take a look around at some of the other games happening.

Round 2

I faced off against a nice fellow, one Jonathan Taylor-Yorke and his lovely (award winning) Khador, now at this point I noticed the similarities in the names of my first and second opponents – Husband and Wife, yep can you see what’s coming?

A beautiful Zerkova list deployed opposite my box fresh Epic Lylyth list:-

Epic Lylyth

1 x Striders + UA

1 x Raptors Min

2 x Ravagor

1 x Shredder

1 x Deathstalker

Yeah I took a ranged list against a Warcaster who’s feat denies initial ranged attacks, a large circular capture area was placed in the centre of the board – one feat turn followed by a spell that hurls all my guys out of the control zone and Mr Taylor-Yorke had defended his wifes honour and defeated me in two turns….one for one not bad not bad.

We broke for lunch after this and I had a chance to chat with some of the other Tyrants, Chris had unusually lost both his games, Jack had won one lost one just like me and Kurt oh poor Kurt….

Round Three

I drew a Menoth player by the name of Felix, he deployed his Reznik tire 4 list and then proceeded to tell me exactly what each thing did while I deployed by Shredder bombers and nodded only half listening.

I opted to go second, he shuffled forward in true Menoth ‘jack wall style, my Shredders hit one flank of his Warjacks and tied up some of his Cleansers. My Scytheans ran forward and were ready to deploy the death blow to a Reznik who had been knocked down by a arched Scourge (via a spell Marty).

I popped my Feat and cut lose doing 8 or so points to his knocked down Warcaster, then followed some knocked down token placements which suspiciously now meant that Reznik was no longer in range for my second Scytheans attack (I was not amused by this but there was no judges about).

I let it go and go on with my Game, he killed my Shredders and closed on my Warmongers before. My turn again and I set Reznik on fire (moral victory at least) before knocking him down again, but his Warjack wall prevented me form ending it there and then.

One point to shake down a dodgy charge line and some ridiculously good dice rolls later, left Thaggs dead and me furious.

Round Four

After my small rage out and several attempts to sell my 296 points of Legion of Everlight, I sat down to play our only Cygnar contender one Stu Herrod, he was a very laid back and friendly chap that had a nicely rounded Cain list.

It was Killbox and I wanted the win so I took Epic Lylyth and decided to try and out shoot Cygnar.

My opponents first three turns were full of annoyance as the only targets for his guns where my non-stealthy Raptors, by my turn five I had killed his infantry and torn both arms off his Cyclone and Defender leaving only Cain who could actually hurt me.

He made the assassination run but unluckily ended up 6” away from my stealth Lylyth, but with Blur up he was defence 20! That’s 12’s to hit with Lylyth and triple 6’s to hit with my Ravagors!

Time to think outside of the box.

I walked into his broken down Defender with a Ravagor and threw it at Cain, I was an inch short but the dice Gods smiled upon me and it scattered an inch directly on top of Cain! Flattening him and doing 12 damage it was a miracle of dice love.

I turned Lylyth on the spot and boosted to hit, Stu shook my hand and we had a good laugh at the randomness of the flying Warjack ploughing into his Warcaster.

So two for two isn’t that bad.

Stef with the aid of his Troll helper, worked out the rankings and revealed who came where.

1st – Aaron Kenny (Sonny) – Circle Orboros
2nd – Lee Upton – Skorne
3rd-Jonathan Taylor-Yorke – Khador – Best Painted
4th – Mc Lovin – Protectorate of Menoth
5th – Dan Kirk – Protectorate of Menoth
6th -Jere Koskela – Legion of Everblight
7th- Felix Hughes – Protectorate of Menoth
8th- Andrew Hornby – Protectorate of Menoth
9th –  Robert Michell – Cryx
10th – Tyler Evans – Khador
11th – Robert Cornell – Trollbloods
12th – Chris Horney – Protectorate of Menoth
13th – Ross Knill-MacAthur – Legion of Everblight
14th – Richard Would – Legion of Everblight
15th – Andy Garrard – Retribution of Scyrah
16th – Jack Shenton – Legion of Everblight
17th – Kill Dill – Trollbloods
18th – Barnaby Smart – Mercenaries
19th – Paul Brown – Cryx
20th – Gary Burgess – Mercenaries
21st – Dan Melia – Mercenaries
22nd – Lee Oswin – Retribution of Scyrah
23rd – Ruth Taylor-Yorke – Circle Orboros
24th – Gareth Higgins – Mercenaries – Sportsmanship Award

25th – Paul Cocks – Mercenaries – Best Painted Runner Up

26th – Paul Watson – Protectorate of Menoth
27th – Lee Oswin Jr – Skorne
28th – Pete Killam – Circle Orboros
29th – Michael Dabbs – Khador
30th – Stu Herrod – Cygnar
31st- Simon Gridley – Legion of Everblight
32nd- Jamie Wright – Minions – Unpainted Army Raffle Winner

33rd – Darrell Taylor – Minions

34th – Mark Evans – Protectorate of Menoth
35th Geoffrey Willoughby – Cygnar
36th – Wooden Spoon (Sponge) -Kurt Emery – Trollbloods

Due to the internet devouring our photos I don’t have the pictures of the winners or the best painted army to show you *Hangs head in shame* I will go back into the grid later tonight and battle my way through fire walls and anti virus barriers in attempt to find my photos!

Now some of you will be wonder who our fallen Tyrant is, well it’s Kurt. He came dead last and got the booby prize (A sponge not because he smells but because he ended up on the bottom tables nicked named sponge valley as we used the foam rocks as terrain).

Kurt has promised to try harder, and he had better win something soon or the next time that the daemon in our packing office takes him I’m not risking my soul to retrieve him!

And so I am done with my tail, however I am back in the Hordes gym training hard for the upcoming Maelstrom doubles, so keep your eyes peeled for my tale from the eye of the storm.

Penned by Ross your Glorious Overlord.

Specialist Games – Still alive or collecting dust?

I spend a lot of time on the shop floor speaking with customers, messing about (read working very hard) and generally observing the flow of Games. And I have noticed some of our regulars have seemingly put away their Warhammer 40k and Fantasy armies and suddenly started playing some of Games Workshops Specialist games.

Now when I was a young’un they weren’t called Specialist games they were just Games, and this is where I think the youngsters of today get put off. They want to pick it up and play with it, they want to be taught how it works by some one who knows whats going on and not having to trudge trough a rule book in their bed room to work out how far an Emperor Class battleship can move each turn. So when I started to see Necromunda, Epic 40,000 and Battle Fleet Gothic being played in store I couldn’t help but feel a warm fuzzy feeling of satisfaction that not only are people playing but they are talking and teaching others how the games work!

I myself played Necromunda and Battle Fleet Gothic in the past and some where under the years of dust is a fully painted Van’Sar gang and a Ulthèw Eldar Fleet and it was this realisation that leads to this Blog post.

If you use to play these games why did you stop?

I stopped because I didn’t have anywhere to play, my local GW started losing patients with me and the other veterans playing Aeronutica Imperialis on an 8’ by 4’ during the gaming nights so eventually we stopped playing – Gamers seem to have fits and starts of playing one system before moving on and I think this also played a part in it but if Games Workshop took some time to teach these youngsters about the other games surly it would keep them in the hobby once the fascination with Space Marines has worn off?

Now don’t get me wrong I love Games Workshop and they have done well by me for many years (And if I’m honest we did kind of just roll in take a table and play with out planes while kids sat and watched with no idea what we were doing), so I cannot blame them for asking us to stop or at least play smaller games. But what about those few that saw us play and want in? Who did they ask once we had left, how did they learn a Specialist system?

I don’t know the who’s and how’s but some of them have made it to my tables with their planes, battleships and hive gangs.

So I’ll end my blog with a suggestion to all those interested in something a bit different.

If you like the look of a Battleship from the Gothic range or a Blood Bowl team don’t just think ‘oh that looks cool’ speak to your friends, get together with other gamers and try it out, you never know you might just find a new game to play and new people to play with.

Penned by Ross Your Glorious Overlord