Friday, March 6, 2015

NZTC - Host of the Eternity King Audition Tape

The most common matchup at the NZTC was between Not-So-High-Now Elves and Less-Dark-Than-We-Thought Elves.

Over the course of the weekend they fought nine times. The sum total was a win to Dark Elves 93-87. If I take out the top and bottom scores (HE win 20-0 and DE win 17-3) then the average result was Dark Elves beat High Elves 10.85 to 9.15.

Interesting all but one of the remaining seven results (DE 14-6) fall into the 9-11 point range.

"You go first"

"No you go first"

"Let's both go first"

"Better still let's hide in opposite corners"

The term "Flat Track Bullies" springs to mine. Elves really are the Mark Waugh of the Warhammer World.

NZTC Race Performance

I was a bit reluctant to put up a breakdown by performance for individual races as the statistical same is very small - 48 split over thirteen armies.

They range from one (O&G) to eight (Dark Elves). Given such small samples player skill impacts dramatically on the analysis.

However here is a breakdown:

Over time - and with a big enough sample - you would hope if the game was balanced then all armies would revert to 60 points. Realistically I think you would see all armies fall in the 55-65 point range given time.

Looking at the results I'm actually surprised how many fall into the 55-65 point range. Notably these are the armies that were most represented at the event.

Really though there is not much you can say as the results are not statistically significant (I'm sure Jack will correct me if I'm wrong).


von Trapp Invitational

The other event that took place last weekend was the von Trapp Invitational. Ensconced in the VIP Lounge the four members of the von Trapp Family team amused themselves for two days.

On the Sunday there was a four way Triumph & Treachery game where we used 1000 point armies in the "Get The Artefact" scenario. The artefact in this case was a statue of the great Seerlord Morskitta. There are a number of these littering the Old World due to injudicious use of Final Transformation.
The game saw two Daemons of Chaos, one Warriors of Chaos and a Wood Elf line up to capture the statue. In the end Dan's Warriors were victorious holding off a fast finishing Wood Elf offensive from Peter Williamson. Peter had to content himself with securing the title of "Most Treacherous Opponent" displaying a moral compass that a Gnobblar would be proud of.

Saturday say a round robin where we used our NZTC armies in a three game mini-event.

Round 1

Peter Williamson von Trapp (Wood Elves) beat Tom Dunn von Trapp (Daemons) 12-8
Peter Dunn von Trapp (Skaven) beat Dan Butler von Trapp (Warriors) 20-0

Round 2

Peter Williamson von Trapp (WE) drew with Peter Dunn von Trapp (Skaven) 10-10
Dan Butler von Trapp (WoC) drew with Tom Dunn von Trapp (DoC) 10-10

Round 3

Peter Williamson von Trapp (WE) drew with Dan Butler von Trapp (WoC) 10-10
Peter Dunn von Trapp (Skaven) beat Tom Dunn von Trapp (DoC) 16-4

From my point of view, it was pretty clear my army matched up well versus the other armies. In the game versus Dan I was able to reduce his mobility and then address each threat in turn. It did see the emergence of the Fester Spike Annihilators, a unit of slaves so dedicated to the Seerlord's cause that they will charge Skullcrushers (a few caveats - down a hill, in a flank etc etc). Versus Peter, I made an awful error allowing a kamikaze charge by Wild Riders on the front of the Bell which saw the removal of his Seerness. I almost got away with it by overrunning after a magic charge in turn six. However I was left less than an inch from the board edge and Peter was able to collect the last wound from the Bell.

In my game versus Tom I pushed into the middle of the board Turn 1 and was able to remove (13th) the Herald with Final Trans (you see, an old rat does learn). Tom then suffered awful Magic Dice which saw him get only two spells off during the game. This allowed me to pick up units piecemeal to secure a nice win.

A big thanks to the other von Trapps who suffered our withdrawal from the NZTC without grumble. This was greatly appreciated as the removal of the bye greatly enhanced the integrity of the NZTC result.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Full NZTC Results

Full NZTC results are available here

Thanks to all that attended, I hope you had a good time.

NZTC - More Analysis

Thanks to Tim for sending through final results sheet. I'll post full sheet soon but first here is some more analysis.

The Velociraptors

Here are the Top 10 individual pointscorers at the NZTC.

Not sure what the statistical probability is of getting ten different races as your top pointscorers but either we were very lucky or FOB Lite Comp worked really well.

Well done to Greg Greenfield on breaking 100 points.

In the final column is the ratio of the player versus their team score. So I'd like to congratulate Locky Reid on a phenomenal score of 46.7%. Remind me never to wait at a bus stop with that man!

Never Leave Something On The Table

Efficiency specialists will marvel at the performance of Pants Off and Shirts Off. Both teams never capped an opponent nor required welfare points. These are the teams that the Thatcherites amongst us marvel at. They stand on their own eight feet - albeit without their pants or shirts - and take responsibility for their own scores.

The above teams should be a model for the following three:

1. Pete's Potluck - 24

2. The Nice Team - 20

3. Stonefall Massive - 19

These three teams left the most points on the table due to the capping mechanism. Dare to dream guys, dare to dream.


White Dwarf - End Times: Archaon Pictures

As expected this weekend sees the "final" instalment of End Times up for pre-order. It is also accompanied by two new infantry units.

White Dwarf cover - looks a great paint job. Love the richness of the red.

The final volume. There is also a limited edition as normal.


Interesting in the last photo the Wrathmongers are fighting Dwarfs. I had thought the Skaven had wiped them out last book. Bloody cockroaches and nuclear war syndrome.


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Hobby Update

With last weekend being the NZTC this obviously took up much of my hobby time. However a few things were achieved.

First and foremost a "legendary" unit was spawned. Due to odd numbers at the NZTC, the von Trapp Family withdrew to remove the need for a bye. Instead we played our own round robin - in the von Trapp Invitational Lounge, no less - over the course of the Saturday. On Sunday we played a game of Triumph & Treachery.

In the game I had versus Dan Butler's Warriors of Chaos, I managed to get a unit of Skullcrushers to overrun whereby a Skavenslave unit could charge downhill and hit them in the flank. Armed only with their +6 CR this brave unit of Slaves beat the Khorne Monstrous Cavalry not once, but twice and caused them to flee off the table. The week before the same unit of 40 Slaves had taken the charge from twice their number of Higgins' Clan Scurvy slaves and beaten them, causing them to explode. From now on this unit will be known as the "Fester Spike Annihilators". Tremble in fear!

I managed to sell around $300-400 worth of stuff at the Bring & Buy. Of course I had to reinvest some of the money and picked up Archaon on Foot, the Ltd Edition WoC Box Set BSB, some Hobgoblin Khans and two boxes of plastic Chaos Dwarfs. The only downer was that a couple of items off the B&B table were picked up with nobody speaking to me or arranging payment. Hopefully this was an oversight and people will get in touch later this week.

Painting wise, on Monday I started painting my four Stormfiends. The last two nights I've concentrated on skin and getting the armour right. My intention is to make them suitably grimey - as though the Master Moulder and Clan Skyre Engineers have put them together in some pit or cave. I'm estimating that they should be table ready late next week.

Warhammer Podcasts

I have a twenty minute commute each day and so I use the time to listen to podcasts. Painting or hobby time also provides further opportunity so generally over the course of the week I tend to get through a few.

The one thing you get to understand about wargaming podcasts is that most gamers think they have something to say - a bit like bloggers - and that they have an audience who needs to hear it. So you get things starting off with a bit of a rush, much gusto, full steam ahead etc etc.

A lot die after 10-20 episodes - typically a year or so - but they are replaced by new offerings. Then you get the granddaddys that go the distance and hit the three figure mark for episodes. I have nothing but respect for that type of commitment.

Given I've been listening to Warhammer podcasts for over seven years now I thought I'd give my observations as to what makes a good podcast.

1. Structure

The best podcasts are tightly scripted with defined segments and a plan of attack. By having this structure they stay on script and deliver their key messages. It also allows variety in the content with all the hobby buttons being pushed - gaming, painting, news, tips etc. A great example is Heelanhammer which has reinvented itself in the past year with a much tighter structure.

A lot of podcasts eskew scripting and go free form. Typically this will be against the background of a tournament review. What you generally end up with is three plus hours of round by round "and then I rolled a three". Very rarely is it great listening for a wider audience. Interestingly this type of podcast is typically unlikely to make it past 12 months as the hosts run out of something to say.

2. Humility

A bit of humility on a podcast is a wonderful thing. You may be the greatest Warhammer player in Slough/Inverness/Albuquerque/Khandallah but people don't want to hear it continually.

Rather than tell listeners how good you are, demonstrate it through content (a great example of this is the videocast Furion does. He may not be everybody's ideal prom date but he constantly demonstrates why you should listen to him.

Arrogance might be a great trait in a Dreadlord, not so much in a podcaster.

3. Variety

Your show has to have some variety. Five episodes in a row of how you crushed a bunch of newbs rounds one to four with your Malekith list gets a little "same-y". Far more interesting is imparting some of the wisdom on how the newbs could have countered Malekith or how you made your Malekith conversion (because hopefully you didn't use the shite Sly Stallone GW model.

Tactics, tips, possible game direction - all hold more attention than a blow by blow of your latest 20-0.

Final Thoughts

I won't to finish up that I understand that these offerings are generally a labour of love and offered free. However that it is a competitive market out there - only so much listening time - and to "win" the podcast wars you really need to appeal to as many people as possible.

IMO Heelanhammer is currently the tightest of the available podcasts followed by Pointhammered (which constantly demonstrates that you don't have to stop being archaic). Bad Dice has been great in the past - especially Ben's Daily Show - but I suspect RL and burnout have got in the way over the past year.

In the end I appreciate everybody's efforts. They all take time and commitment. However unless there is an ongoing audience I suspect they will soon get disappointed and despondent.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

NZTC Strength of Schedule

I thought I'd work out NZTC Strength of Schedule to see who got to walk over broken glass and who got the bunny runs.

To do this I worked out the average points score per game of opposing army - above 10 = harder and below 10 = easier.

You can see that Shirts Off, Pants Off and NATUC had significantly harder draws than the other teams in the competition. Conversely Pete's Potluck got the mother of all bunny runs in securing their 3rd Place finish.

When taken over 24 games Shirts and Pants Off were almost 40 points worse off in relation to Pete's Potluck.


Monday, March 2, 2015

NZTC Results

Here are the results for the NZTC - I have added a round by round breakdown of the draw.

The "Most Sporting Team" was Not Afraid to Use Comp.

Best Presented went to Tim Lind with Empire, Tane Woodley was second with Dwarfs and Glen Tibbles third with Dark Elves.

Big thanks to all the players and to Tim Joss for umpiring it.