Several things have been going on lately, in the Gaming sphere of life at GwC headquarters. Here is a rundown...
Cold Wars - I attended Cold Wars last month - it was a touch and go decision up until the last minute, and it wasn't helped by the fact that there was a dreadful blizzard on the day I was supposed to leave. I left the next day, and still had a great time.
I met up with Chris and a bunch of the folks from Maryland, and further north, who game together at the HMGS shows - I have played with them a bunch in the past, but mostly it was Warhammer Ancients. Patrick, of course, was there - as were Mike and Gil and some others.
I got to participate, as a viewer/heckler and Referee's assistant (glorified title for flipping a few initiative cards) in some really compelling games of Muskets and Tomahawks from Studio Tomahawk (the fine folks who publish SAGA). I bought a copy of the rules, and the cards, etc, from Steve at Age of Glory- a great fellow to deal with.
Painting - I have begun collecting some new paints. I have wanted, for some time, to experiment with using artist acrylics, entirely, for a project - and then assessing what the finished look is like, compared to using gamer paints (like Vallejo or Reaper), or craft paints (like Folk Art or Apple Barrel). The brand I have selected is Liquitex. I went with the Basics line, rather than the Heavy Pigment line. I have used some of the colors from their Heavy Pigment artist line before - notably Titanium White and Cadmium Red (for 19th century Egyptians and British Red Coats, respectively, because I wanted bold bright colors, and I wasn't getting that from the craft paints I was using at the time). The results for me were excellent, and so I wanted to follow up by purchasing a full palette of colors to use for an upcoming project. I went ahead and got the 24 color starter set - the additional colors in the 36 color and 48 color sets did not really inspire me too much as being necessary for an experiment in a new medium. I did wander outside of the Liquitex range for some other colors I will need - notably, I picked a light terracotta color from the Winsor & Newton line, to use as a basis for flesh. I plan to try this out on a unit or two of Vikings, either for SAGA, or Lionheart, or both.
Boardgames - Many new card games and board games over the past few months, since Christmas, mostly from Kickstarter rewards and a few trades and purchases. I have begun writing an article about new Train titles at GwC headquarters, and will publish that shortly. Played a few titles on the week leading up to Tabletop Day, but did not participate in any activities this year (we were on a spring break trip, and returned too late to host a game day, or attend the activities at the local game shop). Some of the titles played recently included Salmon Run, On the Underground, and Valley of the Kings. Loads of boardgames on the iPad, but hey - that don't count.
Wargaming - There has been, of late, a resurgence in interest in Wargaming in the Department of Defense, and a number of professional developments for me are underway, where I am participating in wargaming design, the re-purposing of models and simulators for wargaming, and also teaching my Combat Modeling class. Not really hobby oriented, but hey - steel sharpens steel.
Roleplaying - I have taken up the flung gauntlet from John, in following on his Village of Hommlet game, in the World of Greyhawk. I have the players investigating the circumstances (which, of course, includes a DUNGEON) around the mysterious deaths of three brothers, who were Knights from Veluna, who came with Prince Thrommel to fight the army of evil at the battle of Emridy Meadows. The Knights, distracted by the youngest one who fell in love with a Village girl near Nulb, disappeared before the battle of Emridy Meadows took place. Now, ten years later, the players were traveling through the region, on their way north from Hommlet, and they came across tales and rumors. The game so far has focused on the upper level of the Dungeon they uncovered in the forest glade where the Brothers were laid to rest - but who killed them? What happened to the girl? How come two of the three graves are empty? The game is going well, although we only play about 1-2 times a month.
Conventions - I have been helping, and will continue to help with the ODMS conventions in Williamsburg. Some of the Staff have had medical problems and the remaining crew needs the help. Also, I plan to attend Fall In next November (I can't wait). I don't know about Historicon (family travel the week before, and the week after, will leave that weekend pretty tied up), but have been thinking about "The Weekend". Does that event's name sound like an M Night Shyamalan movie to anyone but me? Also, planning on attending Congregate in Greensboro NC this summer, working staff for the Con Suite. Plan to do some heavy gaming while there, as well.
That is all, for now, will report back soon, and hopefully the Train Game article will come around quickly.