Monday, June 24, 2013

Episode 5: Insert Witty Title Here

00:35 introductions and babbling
03:07 Topic listings
03:31 Talking about beer
11:00 Topic boy! Topic! Food has arrived
11:15 Lesser Warlocks and how they fit in the game
16:41 We are talking out of our asses.... and a correction
34:40 The mall cop brings us to the new topic: What am I jealous I don't have?
47:00 Bring your own terrain.
59:54 Last Beer down


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

New new new!

And we have a new microphone! Omnidirectional, three receivers, and its heavy! The Blue Microphone's Yeti arrived today. Very happy! Can not wait to try it out on Sunday.

If you also noticed, we now have an RSS feed in the upper right. This means we are also trying to get on ITunes.

What a wonderful day.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

They let me loose on the streets of Caspia

Having slipped the chains of the Scharde Isles Diplomatic Corps(e) in Caspia I found myself wandering lost and parched in the hommlets outside the main walls.

The distinct smell and sound of beer drew me into Lost Rhino.
Summer is upon us and Sumner beers reign. Wheat and IPA rule with hoppy iron fists.

Lost Rhino's tasting room is an example of what all good tasting rooms need to be.  Thankfully brewers understand the need for clean. Well lit - this is for socializing not cloaked conspiracy. Inviting - happy people, maybe a little music, and a pride in their offerings.  Like a pub but less well worn.

"Who cares? What about the beer?"
'Good' is a word for lazy boring people. I was unlucky enough to visit when all they had on tap were safe seasonal choices further biased by my general dislike of the IPA style. These were solid summer drinking beers with one standing out above the rest: Ice Breaker IPA.
Yes. The IPA.
It can be difficult tasting five different beers with many of the same elements - especially with my palate's  "fire bad. Beer good!" sophistication.  I was impressed simply because the expectations of this IPA were shattered. An unexpected demonstration of craftsmanship.

So,  should you be wandering lost anywhere near (Google it yourself!) Lost Rhino I'd advise taking the trek to visit them. Have a taste of something outside your comfort zone - it might surprise you!


Monday, June 17, 2013

Podcast 4 - The newbie episode

In this very special episode of BeerThralls, we discuss why we chose our faction and where new players should go after the battlebox. Nathan also learns about sharing and caring. Awwwww

02:10 Cheers
02:20 Topic Boy gives the topics
02:30 How I picked my army
07:00 What should I have after the battlebox?
44:40 Worse model in your faction
55:50 Last beer hits the table
57:10 Game off

Next week we are hoping to have Huzzah Hobbies owner Chris at the table to discuss his opinions of the game, communities, and any other topic we ramble into.


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Warmahine Hordes Podcast

Episode 4 of the BeerThralls Warmachine Hordes podcast will be recording today at the Alamo Drafthouse in Ashburn, VA at 6:30.

Friday, June 14, 2013

How I Met Your Faction

Kids, you remember the time I got talked into going to a new hobby store in college with your Uncle Marshall? No? Well here's the story condensed into 22 minutes with some jokes and far too much sex than any father should be willing to admit to his children. What? I don't have any kids? Well never mind then. I'm leaving the laugh track at home though, it keeps going off every time I say something, no matter what.

Everyone has their own way of deciding things in life, but whatever your way is, it's probably based on past experiences and knowledge. Most people don't just arbitrarily pick things off of a list with no thought whatsoever (if you do, more power to you, but you're weird!). There are two ways I find a lot of people choose to base their faction: rules/mechanics, and lore/fluff. Big surprise right? But what's the best way to get a new player into the game and to make sure they pick the right faction? After all, while the buy in for this game is pleasantly affordable, you still want to be satisfied with your purchase. When I made my decision, the fluff trumped the mechanics, which was pretty different for me.

Your first decision is probably the easy one: Warmachine or Hordes? Most everyone has a pretty automatic answer to that one, and it's a mechanics thing. Do you like risk management or resource management? For me, I usually prefer resource management, but that's when people started getting into the fluff.




And elves I guess, whatever man, dragons. Dragons look bad ass.

And that's usually where I like to go for step two. Hyperbole helps a lot here. At my FLGS (and I'm sure plenty others), when getting newcomers excited, boiling down each faction to its fundamental silliness seems to do the trick. Robot Necromancer Pirates. Spanish Inquisition (with robots). Xenophobic MAGIC Robots (do you see a theme here?). The Drunken Underdogs. Obviously you can't leave it at that, but that's the basic idea.

I sort of mentioned in my previous post that I am generally an equal opportunity gamer. I tend to be an RPG buff, single player and MMO alike, and I tend to run either tricksy support, or glass cannon. When I heard the fluff for Legion, and someone told me they were the Glass Cannon Faction backed with some of the best support models available to Hordes, I knew immediately what I was picking. This only became more true when I discovered they are essentially the Zerg of this game (for any StarCraft fans out there). A friend of mine only needed to know that Circle was essentially teleporting werewolves (with occasional greatswords), and yet another was sold after he saw Menoth had Paladins (he always was our tank in MMOs).

As a closing thought, some people spend an enormous amount of time thinking about who they want to play, and research left and right before they pick a faction. That may work for them, but I say go with your gut. If that one model looks crazy cool, that's as good a reason as any to start with that army. You'll figure out what's good in the end if that's something else you care about. Play like you've got a pair right? Do it when you pick your army too.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Entropy League starts next month!!


No, seriously. The rules for Entropy were released along with the cards.

So, what does that mean for you?
Cygnar: a minor tweak on your Storm Strider. Nothing really to see here. Keep reading.

Protectorate: Conversion is an awesome power. Bring along a Vessel just for the hood rats.

Khador: You want this all the time. A Cygnar Slugger, two firebombing cannons that leave cloud AOE. AND SPRINT! Trample. Shoot lots. SPRINT.

Cryx: Handing out Incorporeal is fun. Dropping clouds is fun. I can see significant Mayhem being inflicted with this.

Retribution: Steve Jobs' battle engine. Neat "turn models to face randomly" effect. Still looks like an Apple branded cricket.
Mercenaries: Small based love for scenarios. This has become a must have for the season.

Trollbloods: WAR WAGON OF DRUNKEN HEROES.  Does exactly what it says on the tin.  Bring 2. For the love of Dhunia bring 2.

Circle Orboros:  Someone had to get the Iron Lich Overseer of the season. Sorry.

Skorne: Angry armadillo is angry. The ability to boost is going to surprise the hell out of someone.

Legion of Everblight: This is just one hateful beast. Berzerk and autoboosting against the living.

Minions: Available to more factions than an Ordic Cortesan this is the other must-have model.  Fresh off a Jackie Chan movie marathon Cygnar and Mercenaries are going to be significantly more difficult to play against in scenario. I told you to keep reading.

Each of the Schematics are different again and the missions are...challenging.  Have a read!

Week one of the divorce: Changing faction.

If this was a typical break up there would be a lot of country music and crying on friends shoulders.  Maybe a few too many beers exaggerating small flaws and desperately trying to justify abandoning the investment of time and effort...
of course the problem is I love my faction. I'm not changing factions. this is just a separation while I work some shit out.

So now that I'm committed to this course of action it's time to check out the options. A few dates here and there ( including a quick fling with Everblight. Way too much like the last faction even if it was freakier on the table).  So now I decided to hook up with this other faction. Not drop dead gorgeous, and rough around the edges in a bar fight in Glasgow sort of way.

So now I'm starting on a 35-50 point  cycle of trollkin and realizing that I've got fuck-all for tiers. Tiers are a mixed bag, but for now I'm going to use one as a starting point.

Tier 4: The Big Bang
50+5 points, 29 models

Captain Gunnbjorn  +5 points
* 3x Dire Troll Blitzer  8 points each
(Need 1)
* Troll Impaler  5 points

Fell Caller Hero  3 points
6 Pyg Bushwackers  (5 points)
Thumper Crew  3 points
Thumper Crew  3 points
6 Trollkin Scattergunners  5 points
* Scattergunner Officer & Standard  (2 points)
3 Trollkin Sluggers  (5 points)

Additional Rules:

For every two units, place one trench template. (BOOYAH!)
Thumper Crew units gain Advance Deployment.
Models in Gunnbjorn's battlegroup gain +2 SPD during your first turn.

Week two will be the first round of reviews of my mixed results.


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Watching love grow

No this isn't a post about Pfizer's blue pill or some feeder fetish.  Its about our love: Beer!

We've all had the opportunity to fall in love with our local brewers. If you haven't I can arrange a shotgun wedding...
The folks at the New Yorker have this *really cool* interactive map. I know it isn't up to a Beer Fanatic's scrutiny. I can see a few breweries they missed (so can you presuming you've read this blog) like Adroit Theory, Lost Rhino, Hardywood Park, and a slew of brewing pubs.

It is damn cool though.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Podcast Episode 3 - Sit in the corner!

01:25 Introduction
01:50 Scott does a party foul
02:00 To Tier or not to Tier
08:30 Young George shows up
12:30 Fast game vrs long game.... or tough game vrs short game.... yeah we bounce around
32:45 Man we are long winded... Remember the Scenario
39:00 STOP TURNING UP THE MUSIC, ALAMO.... grrrrr....
42:00 Scott becomes the Voice of Reason
44:50 New shinnies are coming
52:00 Three points in one turn!


Friday, June 7, 2013

Arlan: You slacker.

[Originally composed 6/2/2013]

Its summer (no, really, it went from cool early spring straight to 90° heat here) and the festival season here has started.
So, post festival, we decided to head into check a new brewery out : Strangeways.
I preface this by the fact they've been open since *Wednesday* so having a Belgian White and a Brown on tap is a good start.   The next two are brewing happily away as we speak in gleaming stainless steel, so patience will pay off. Theoretically next week.
But why then would Cygnar be everyone's favorite?

"Have you tried the beer?"
"No." Sips, thinks for a moment, then finishes the pint.
"Your orders sir?"

If Cygnar's primary export wasn't bullets and angry warjacks they could have mastered the entirety of Caen with a financial juggernaut rivaling the Dutch East India Company in 1680.

Drink like they Poured a Pair.


I accidentally a whole novel for you but I resold it...

Here at Beerthralls we keep looking at the quality of our articles..

Ok, I admit it , we're really not writing for you. We're writing for us and hoping you get something from it.  In doing this we're (duh!) somewhere between frustratingly infrequent and prolific to the point of being a series of romance novels depending on the time of week/day/beer.  Case in point : the other thralls are glaring at me over their pints because every 10 days or so (some longer "or so"s than others) I keep sending them reminders about that post they were going to do...

In churning out pages of utter tripe (giving you a sense of my quality control standards) I staggered up against one of my pet peeves in gaming : reselling your toys and expecting some value.

From one of the least infuriating posts I've read on the subject:
"I know with warhammer the following prices are practically universally understood regarding the sell of used models...
NIB plastic - 70%
Non damaged metal figs - 70%
Assembled plastic figs - 50% (plastic figs assembled with plastic glue drops that even further)
There's always other minor details that change price like rarity, missing pieces, etc. etc.
Does warmahordes follow the same sort of set up?"

What the hell is wrong with you people?
Yes, there are retailers that help this. Hell, even some do commission sales. (Credit where its due.) The thought that your yard sale toys are going to keep value is a ridiculous bout of childishness.  How selfish is it to hope that the toys at a yard sale are going to get 70%MSRP?  Second hand clothes?  Flatware?

Its a game. Toys.  If you're selling it hopefully you're selling to someone trying to get into the game, not some maniac hoarding for some gaming apocalypse. If you *want* to sell to that maniac you can drop me a line... NO! NO! Bad me! 
Expecting to get a significant ROI on your hobby seems to me that its not really a hobby.


So much to do; So little time.

Here is my day:
Wake up at 6:15am
At work by 7:00am
Work till 11:15ish then lunch at my desk
Leave work by 3:00pm if lucky
Come home and read emails and facebook
Rest and do other things until 10pm rolls around then sleep
Rinse repeat

Problem is that rest and do other things includes hanging out with friends, working on my house, mowing the lawn, cleaning, laundry, commission painting, competition painting, watching Defiance (Man that show is awesome), and Tuesdays throwing Warmachine/Hordes demos....

No time! Well there has to be. I have a couple of rules when it comes to Hobbies.
1. If it feels like a job: stop - Seriously stop. It is a hobby and is something that is suppose to be fun. It shouldn't be a job (unless you do commission work... then it is....). Take a break. Your brain is basically telling you you are thinking to hard and it wants to rest. Come back to it in an hour or tomorrow.

2. Schedule a time - My painting time is about an hour after I get home till around 8:00. After that if I am being inspired I will do more (unless Defiance is on... once again... awesome show). Tuesdays and Sundays are my gaming and podcast nights. Scheduling a time allows you to get into a routine. It tells your mind and body to be prepared because you do this every time at this time.

3. Goals - Yeah I break them too, but setting a goal for your painting session is a great idea. I am going to finish this competition piece's backpack today. I am going to knock out 4 Bloodtrackers. Setting a goal not only makes you feel accomplished but gives you a point where you feel like you can stop. Setting a squad of 10 guys on the table can feel overwhelming and make you want to stop. Goals of minimal squads or a beast/warmachine or two is a good thing.

Really, the simplest way to crowbar your hobby into your busy day is not to crowbar it at all but to make is a small portion. Yes, things come up. A water heater breaks, friends are calling, you are just emotionally or physically drained, work calls you in at 2pm on Memorial Day weekend to fix an issue for two people out of 1000 and it needs to be done NOW.... hypothetically.....  It is tough but once you find a small niche for painting and playing you will start looking forward to it.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Oh look! School is back in.

It is of particular importance to remember that even if they are on the Internet they may not be particularly amazing.

If you have listened to our last podcast you heard our debate on playing to the mission. Today's event was a poignant reminder. In order to practice for the Masters Tournaments there was a masters format event at our FLGS.

I achieved  neither caster kill nor scenario victory.  While other beerthralls struggled I mounted a resistance that would be generously described as feeble.  However it was a clear demonstration of my argument that caster kill is King

Then again I did go 0 and 3. Yes, Schoolyard bullies take pity on me.
Maybe next time.


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