Thursday, March 31, 2011

DM Advice - Creating Ecologies Not Static Environments Pt II

Last week in Part I we discussed the physical environments and the basic forms of life that might make the physical environment home. We compared the sewer to the backyard to compare how the real world works and how we could put this to use in the fantasy environments we are trying to create. This week we continue the discussion and look at the uses that individuals might have for that type of environment including the types of individuals that would put such an environment to use.

Been Away Will Return today or tomorrow

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I've been up in Atlanta, GA from Sunday to Wednesday this week and have been caught up in other things. I went to the Drive 2011 conference at North Point Community Church. It is a leadership conference for ministry leaders but the leadership principles are something anyone can use if they follow the right path. It was something I needed to do for myself and I am very glad I went. It was very powerful.

On the gaming front I will put the next post for creating ecologies out sometime today or tomorrow. We are also about ready to release the pdf of the WTNW Conflict on Mars. It's coming soon!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful week.

It's been very rainy here in the south of the United States.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Friday Poll Expansion - What should Martian Tripods Have for WTNW Skirmish?

When there's an active poll running about once a month on a Friday I like to give people the ability to expand upon their answers on the poll. This is a new column I am calling Friday Poll Expansion.

Thank you for participating in the poll for the Martian tripod weaponry. I really want to get a good feel of what people would like to see so that when we do start building the rules and later the models we are able to offer options that are within the scope of the expectations of our possible customers.

I noticed in the poll that a good deal of people like just the heat ray and black gas projectors. I am right there with you on that as I am a bit of a purist when it comes to the WoTW Martians. However, I noticed some of you said that you would like to see small arms as well. What exactly would this entail? How do you vision small arms being used? Would this be plasma or laser based or perhaps some kind of projectiles? I'd love to get your feedback! This is an exercise in thoughts and ideas nothing more.

Remember there are seven days to vote your thoughts before the poll ends!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

DM Advice - Creating Ecologies Not Static Environments Pt I

Tenkar over at Tenkar's Tavern  had a wonderful post today. He went on a trip (he can explain in his blog) and while out there came to see how many types of animals live in an urban environment. He went on to suggest why doesn't fantasy settings have goblins and such living underground or the occasional owlbear rummaging through someone's garbage? His thoughts were well expressed and much better laid out than I just did. I encourage you to check out the post linked above and then come back with a fresh mind for what I have to present.

Expanders - Rogue

Midnight. The clock rung. The toll sounded the meter of the rogue's last performance.

Each week Porky over at the Expanse gives us the chance to form a new flash fiction using 15 words or less and including the word of the week. Check out Expanders

From Under A Rock - Class Counts - Part II

Everyone has a favorite character they like to play. Mine is an Elf Ranger/Bard. I like the combination of the long-distance fighter coupled with the ability to woo the enemy and the occasional damsel. For me, the elf is an extension of my love of the natural world and spiritual connectedness. Then there's the ability to show off as an archer. Let's face it - Elves look cool firing bows. Remember Orlando Bloom as Legolas and the Oliphant? The militant side of the elf appeals to me - it just does. On the other hand, the bardic side allows me to play to the diplomatic side of my personality and there I get to use my leadership skills for the benefit of the group. I get to ham it up but still be in character. For me there's no better combination than an Elf Ranger/Bard though if I had to ask for it all I'd throw in telepath as well.

What's your favorite race/class combo? What is it about it that appeals to you?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sneak Peek at the US Capital Walker - Cyclocosmia

The United States won't be outdone by the Germans! The brilliant strategic minds have devised a cunning weapon platform of shock and awe. The Cyclocosmia  features multiple firing ports and a heavy wood/steel structure that is supported on several tough metal fabricated legs. The entire contraption houses a full brigade and can hold an observation or barrage balloon at the the rear of the platform. The design below is purposefully skewed to ensure that the actual plans never fall into the hands of the enemy. This is a preliminary design but a prototype is being constructed in a secret location. The prototype will be sent after the nefarious Airpirate Blackjack Pershing. 

Sketch by Arsenale Shipworks exclusively for The ArmChair General and WTNW. Scheduled to begin initial work after the Trilobyte and several steam tanks and steambot ideas. The Cyclocosmia  will be sculpted by JTFM.

WTNW Pax Limpopo

WTNW Pax Limpopo is available for only .50  FREE as a pdf download! These are the stats for Eureka Miniature's 28mm line of VSF called Pax Limpopo for the WTNW game. The book contains new edges and flaws for use of the clockwork engines, mortars and whimsical contraptions. The mechanics within work with WTNW and include clockwork whimsy and mortar rules. Eureka Miniatures Pax Limpopo line and the pictures within are used with permission.

Zyklops Rivets Ready

The Zyklops now has her armor plates riveted in place. Almost ready to meet the enemy.

Monday, March 21, 2011

New Steam Tanks

I picked up these nice Steam Tanks from a chap on TMP. We traded for copies of WTNW. I am very eager to see how they look when placed next to my 15mm and 28mm VSF. I particularly like the 'small gray one'. They have a lot of character. Not sure of the manufacturers they do not appear to be scratch built. One appears to be scheltrum. They were put into the mail today and I should get them sometime this week.

What Would A Zombie Think? Super Quick Review of Ahh Zombies

This weekend we believed my son had caught Pink Eye. Naturally we battened down the hatches and quarantined ourselves in doors. The misses and I sat back and watched a good number of movies. I was able to catch a very neat remake of The Lost World and one of Land That Time Forgot. The Lost World had that very good actor (cannot remember his name) that played in Indiana Jones and was Indy's contact in Egypt. He played Professor Challenger and Jeremy Irons played the other Professor (Smithe?). The movie was good. It had claymation dinos but it felt like a classic movie. In addition to the classics, however, I came across something that my buddy Don over at T-Shirt Bordello would get a kick out of.

Ahh Zombies!!!

The movie is OK, the acting is OK, the graphics are OK but the premise is brilliant! What would it look like from the point of view of a zombie? So the movie starts off OK but gets better fairly quickly. Without giving away any of the movie I can say the coolest thing was the movie starts in B&W and goes into Color when in the point of view of the Zombies. Also, when the movie is in the point of view of the zombies the normals are sped up and sound like demented chipmunks. See the zombies brains are very slow and they move slow. I thought it was genius!

So sure the acting is OK and the graphics are nothing spectacular but if you are an old school horror fan like I am and you like things like Dawn of the Dead or even Resident Evil you'll like Ahh Zombies.

See it

Walker and Robots!

Extra, Extra! Her Majesty (God Bless Her!) has sent out a prototype Smythe Walker to confront the infernal mechanical robots that the Martians use as scouts. Reports have already started coming back from the front that the rapid fire gatling gun has been making minced meat - err robot - out of the enemy. The Queen (God Bless Her) is eager to see how the walker meets up against their blasted Tripod War Machines.

The Walker is from Black Hat's Martian Empire's Line and the Robots are from Hydra Miniatures. Both were purchased from Scale Creep.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Into the woods - Porky's Blogwalk

You decide at that moment you must get further into the woods and although the trees around look bare you can see some large living sentinels further in the distance. At once you strike out into the unknown and decide to leave your pursuer far behind.

After a bit of traveling you get to the verdant trees, oaks, maples and even the smell of fresh pine trees welcome you with their bouquet of aromas. Getting a closer look at one of the trees you feel something artificial about them and placing your hand on one of the pine trees you feel something cold-like metal. Knocking on the tree results in a vibration that sends an angry family of birds and a squirrel flying from the top of the tree. Looking around you can clearly see signs of wildlife and a family of small white dexter rabbits cross in front of the path.

You are feeling hungry and momentarily think about going for the rabbits when up ahead in a clearing you see a single stump. Judging from the sheer girth of the stump it once belonged to a mighty tree. Something about the stump has you intrigued.

Do you check out the stump?
Go Rabbit Hunting?
Head back to the stream bed?

Friday, March 18, 2011


Khurasan Miniatures has used a good amount of miracle grow, some old cultist rites they found at an old monastery with the Elder Sign and a bit of witch hazel to come up with the invaders from outerspace. I call them triffids. They call them Vornids but no matter what you call them (to avoid copyright infringement) they are some of the meanest plants this side of the little shop of horrors!

Check em out!

From Under a Rock - Playing Your Strengths

It has been my experience that players tend to gravitate towards character races that they are most like or that they are most unlike. It is very rare for me to see a player play something that is somewhere between. For instance, let us take a look at the similarities often exhibited in players that choose specific races. To keep this short we'll just look at the core fantasy races.

New Cafe Press Store and Website Facelift

We've updated our website with a new banner by David Huber. We've also added a Cafe Press store where you can get shirts, book bags, bumper stickers, and even wall clocks to support The ArmChair General's future projects. If you like WtNW and want to support us this would be a great way to show off to your friends!


The Boers & The Ubertod

I finally got around to putting the Boers on their bases last night. I still need to paint and flock them. They were painted a few years ago by a painting service in the UK. I also based up another unit of Zulus and two more of Germans.

There are pics of the finished fixed Firebase that Dwight fixed for me. The sides were warping due to an error on my part concerning storage.

Lastly, the Ubertod was last seen chasing a small detachment of British gunners out of the woods just outside of Wyversburg. Authorities are baffled as to why the British patrols were out so far away from their colonies. The British ambassador has not yet made a statement.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

HG Wells, ERB, Jules Verne - Fathers of VSF

Arguably the masters and pioneers of Vsf, these gentlemen are known for stories that inspired many to go out and create their own realms. I am willing to bet that many of us have read most of their books but how many have read all of their works? Between Verne, Wells and Burroughs we should have a good number though.

Everyone list the VSF books you've read. Whoever has read twelve or more wins a copy of the Quick Rules. Likewise, anyone who's seen twenty or move films/books together with the VSF description and can name them wins a copy.

This will do two things. It will get the word out about WTNW and put the rules in the hands of people who love vsf and it will help us share the films/books that we have all loved and adored as children and adults that have the vsf theme. Yes we can include steampunk too. Series are however counted as one so John Carter of Mars, The Princess of Mars and Chessmen of Mars count as one for the purposes of this contest.

Whoever has wins a free pdf of our quickplay rules. Since we are all gentlemen I will believe your word. God bless the Queen.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

“May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind be ever at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face and the rain fall softly on your fields. And until we meet again, May God hold you in the hollow of his hand.”

"May those who love us, love us
And those who don't love us,
May God turn their hearts
And if he can't turn their hearts,
May he turn their ankles
So we will know them by their limping!"

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Maiden Launch of the Übertod

The Flagship of the Tod under the command of General Dexter Von Tod of the German crack squad of elite strasstroopen has been launched! The air death reigns over the skies while raining death upon the enemies of the Kaiser! The Prussians and Austrians agree that the Übertod is a marvelous air machine of flying death.

This craft is powered by four turbine mini-LLADs that are suspended under the war gondola. Troopers can use any of the access hatches to fire their rifles from above the airship or one of the multiple portholes to fire through the sides at their enemies underneath. This airship also features bombs and a massive cannon that is capable of delivering deadly attacks to both air and land targets.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Martian Red Weed

I've been listening to the HG Wells War of the Worlds by Jeff Wayne. If you have not heard it I highly recommend it! Also, I've been reading HG Wells War of the Worlds on my Evo. I am really liking the whole story. It's funny because the parson had a point when he said that the Martians were evil. They sure are. They are particularly evil to the farmers and other growers because they leave behind their red weed. It is with the red weed in mind that I tried a few different ways to create this terrain concept idea that HG Wells wrote about in his book.

Concept one is using Spanish Moss and painting it with acrylic paints of various shades of red. I used apple barrel colors for this. 

Concept two is using the aquarium plants that come in the bags that you can get at your local pet store. I used my hands and pulled apart some strands of the red aquarium plant. I didn't do anything other than trim it up a bit.

Concept three is using the cake decoration grass that is available from any cake decoration store. I spray painted these with high gloss red to get this effect.

The final concept is to use the breeding grass that is used for breeding fishes that you can pick up at your local aquarium store. This was also spray painted with high gloss red.

What is your favorite? Do you have another idea?

WTNW Review on Wargame Vault

Mark Cookman did a review of WTNW over at Wargamevault/RPGNOW. He really liked the game. This review and your comments have really charged me to push for a quality product! Thank you all again!

Zyklops Nearing Construction

The Kaiser's engineers have done it! The Zyklops after toiling for months in the fabrication yards  is ready to defend our lands in Africa from the meddling British! The Zyklops armored fortress is a heck of a landship! The first model - The Gufflemark is surely going to make a difference to our fighting men!

She tough but she also has teeth! This beat is armed with four large medium artillery grade guns which are housed in two sponsons to either side of the and one massive cannon at the front. There are also plenty of firing ports and a balcony for our boys to rain down fire volleys at our enemies and keeping them safe at the same time.

A marvel of engineering prowess, the Zyklops features four LLADs mounted in a central line with a kelmight citeburner power plant for central distribution. This enables the landship to reach speeds that rival that of some calvarymen.

Friday, March 11, 2011

All Your Artillerymen Are Belong to Us - UUHHLAAAAAA

The WTNW skirmish game is going to focus on the Martian Invasion. It will be in true HG Wells style but with the twist of the WTNW Landships and the Great Powers might actually have a chance against their would-be masters.


DM Help - Class Counts - Kill Bill VOL 1

Everything's set. Your wife is out or has sat down to play with you. The kids are in bed or at a friends. The dog has been played with and has had his fill of table scraps. The neighbor's dog is locked up inside. Your friends sit around the table looking at you with anticipation on their eager faces. Piles of dice, pencils and chits line the table at each of your friends' areas. The battlemat or map is rolled out on the table and everyone has a miniature to represent their character. Your friends look at their DM with hope for adventure!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The chances of anything coming from mars...

Excerpt from a Hussar's Journal from Horsell Common

"As the Martian War Machines continued to move forward, destoying everything in their path with that blasted heat-ray, a new hope arose from the Commons. A full Brigade of Hussars, mounted upon their steeds and ready for the dirty business of defending the country from these invaders, sounded the charge. My unit was trounced in the initial attack of the beasts. I only hope that it was not too late to join them. As I started forward I cried For Queen and Country and rode off into history and possibly oblivion..."

Greetings Lads,

We will be playing WTNW Skirmish this Friday at 6:30. The scenario will be right out of HG Well's book War of the Worlds. There will be two forces. A British Force of Hussars and Foot and a Martian Force of Ground Units and Tripods. I think you'll really like some of the changes since last time. I look forward to seeing everyone here!

Eureka Miniatures PAX Limpopo status for WTNW

I have been in conversation with Nic over at Eureka Miniatures. We are going to be offering stats for WTNW in the very strange but very fun whimsical line of Pax Limpopo found over at Eureka. Rebel Miniatures is still the official miniatures of WTNW and will continue to bring you boxed sets. I have it from a reliable source that the British are coming and that the Queen Victoria (God Bless Her) will be pleased to see the formations of all the men in Red and Khaki standing in line to lay down their lives for the glory of Britain!

Here are a few pics of the items we'll be covering in a (probably a close to if not absolutely free download) supplement  for Nic's line.

Looking Upstream (Porky's Blogwalk 4)

WOW! That water was tasty but has left you in a strange state. You leave your body behind and follow the stream towards it source. Your body will be fine. The horse creatures did not appear threatening and the your stuff seems well guarded at the bank of the stream. The reeds and water flora begin to take on more pastel colors as you follow the stream onward through the twists and turns of its course.

Finally, after some time you arrive at a small pond that is teeming with fish. The surface of the water sparkles and underneath the water you see hundreds of shiny fish. The fish appear to give off a variety of pastel colors and you feel a slight electric current emanating in a low hum from the banks of the pond.

The stream does not end at the pond and as you follow it with your eyes you can see the bluish color of a nearby sea. Strangely, you cannot smell the salt in the air. Cautiously, you weigh your options.

Gaining your courage you reach into the pond?  OR You jump into the pond hoping to clear your mind?

OR You leave the pond and continue following the stream towards the ocean that lay beyond?

OR Return to where your body lies unguarded at the stream

WTNW Skirmish

The Skirmish rules have changed a lot over the past months. I really think that they will be a big hit! We're playing tomorrow night if anyone is in the area and wants to come. It's the Woking farmhouse scene from WOTW.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Porky's Review of WTNW Quick Play

Porky over at The Expanse did a review of the Quick Play rules. You can find it here!

"Today a short follow-up review for the steampunk wargame When the Navy Walked by ArmChairGeneral. The full ruleset pdf was reviewed a few weeks back, beginning here, and the review was positive on many levels. On the whole, I like the game very much."

Tuesday Game Night - Format Change

Since we lost a few people due to driving and job related changes we decided last night to make the Bi-Weekly Tuesday game that was Against the Heroes a generic game night. We all felt it was time to go ahead and start playing some of those board games that we've had laying around for so long collecting dust. Besides, for me both of the games actually ended at a good point in the Nightlord Saga. The AtH game ended with the 'bad guys' giving the 'semi good guys' the blade that they needed to defeat the Nightlord - the Culin de Sanguine - and the Rise of the Fallen Star game destroyed the Nightlord's tower that he was using to channel his magic to rise his brothers. So all in all both groups accomplished exactly what they needed to do to get the story to a finale. Now it's up to the last few sessions of the CoTS group to put Faerun back where it started.

I opted for the group to check out Zombies! It's a fast-fun easy-to-play board game that is setup exactly like a fire person shooter. I had a collection of zombie clowns and glow in the dark zombies that I had not used for a some time as well as Zombies Second Edition! and Zombies 4! The End but I had a shiny new unopened copy of Zombies 5! Schools out Forever. Funny that Zombies 4! The End wasn't really the end but that's another story. On to the game AAR!.

(Into the Clearing) Porky's Fantasy Blogwalk

You go down into the fold of the land deciding to leave the canopy of trees behind. As you head down you see there is a nice meadow of colorful wildflowers in the clearing. The fold opens to reveal a small bubbling stream that gently meanders through the wildflower meadow. Several medium-sized horse-like creatures prance through the wildflower meadow. They pay no heed as you approach them. Further down past the meadow you see an old stone bridge that crosses the stream that leads towards a rising hill.

From here you can either go to the stream and explore or you can head to the bridge.

Explore the Stream OR Go to the Bridge OR (Go to the Bridge Alternate)

(If you wish to link from this post please let me know and I'll update the post with your link)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Eve of War - Finalized Painting of the ME Tripods and Steamtank

These were a lot of fun to paint up! I used a dark black primer (I couldn't resist - the can actually says DARK Black) followed by a heavy drybrush of apple barrel silver over the entire beast. I painted the tenticles and main gun with the silver using a normal technique. The cockpit of the tripod was painted with a hunter green from applebarrel and a thin strip of lighter applebarrel leaf green. I next used the GW chainmail to drybrush the joints of the tripod and added a brassy brass from Vallejo paints to the joints to show a bit of wear and tear. I also added some GW chainmail drybrush to the top of the tripod cockpit to give it a burnished look. The entire piece will be coated with matte sealer.

The Steamtank was primed with Dark Black (That still gets me) and then followed with a drybrush of applebarrel silver and GW chainmail. The boiler was painted with a brass color and then a darker bronze was applied heavily as a drybrush over the entire vehicle. The guns were all painted brass and finished with a bit of silver. I will go back and line with white and yellow to bring some highlights out on the steam tank before it's all said and done.