Monday, October 28, 2013

Painting Checklist - Thoughts After Skitterleap

Last month when I indicated that I was introducing a capped score painting checklist for future FOB 2400 point Singles events, there were murmuring of discontent.

You can find the checklist and some of the debate here

Now the first event hast been run using the system I am keen to get some feedback on how people found it. From my point of view, it clearly raised the standard of army presentation at the event. It also gave people an incentive to work on their army - and that showed in the raised standard. The thing I like about the system is that it is mechanical - so you get feedback on where your army could get increased marks. This can be really simple.

The other point not discussed previously is that it acts as a kind of comp. You can take the latest filth but if you do you have to go to the effort of painting it to maximise your mark. Turn up with basecoat and your presentation suffers.

Anyway, fire away. I see the checklist as being fluid and evolving over time as we get feedback.


  1. Hi Pete, congrats on the win. It sounded like a good weekend and I'm gutted I couldn't make it.

    Obviously I wasn't there but looking at the scores for painting it seems that there were 7 people who managed to cap, while the remainder of the field managed low thirties. I think I've seen 5/7 of the armies that capped and agree that they are all very nice and I'm pretty sure I've voted for most of them as best painted at some point or another this year. I'm also sure that huge amounts of work have been put into each of those armies.

    What concerns me a bit is that plenty of armies which in the past I have thought were nice looking armies haven't made the cap and I'm pretty sure that my armies won't either. As I stated before I believe the check-list when correctly applied (which I'm sure Sam did) requires somewhat more than a bit of effort to make the cap and leaves many perfectly decent and nice armies giving up a few tournament points. Is it really the intent that the armies which cap are ones which would be competing for Best Painted? I totally accept that the idea is to raise the bar, I guess I just wonder exactly where that bar is going to settle and if that will reflect the effort and skills of a majority of the players.

    As I said, just my two cents and I thought I'd get the ball rolling. I'm pretty keen to hear what others who could make it thought and Sam Whitt's thoughts on using it as the judge.

    Also, I really like that there was a top 3 done for painting.

    Cheers. Jeff

    1. This is my concern too. The painting system was advertised as a "it's easy to get top marks due to needing less than the maximum to get it". However, if only the armies in contention for best painted get top marks, this suggests that either the rest of the field was poorly painted, or the system didn't achieve the desired result for a variety of reasons.

      As an example Bo didn't get full paint marks. Based on what I have seen of his lizard men in the past I would have thought this easily made the grade-he even won best painted at vermin tide last year.

      I understand the need for variety in paint scores, but the marks given don't reflect my perception of the painting standard in Wellington when ranked against the scoring system presented.

      Joel v

    2. Had a quick look over the scores and I would have thought everyone who scored 20+ would have achieved top paint marks.

      The top 3 best presented award is to recognise the "above and beyond" armies. Painting score is to incentivise minimum painting standards, which based on scores is well above the majority of local players (many of whom are not the 'bad apples' letting the scene down)

      Joel v

    3. Bo had two Basilidons that weren't finished or based which would have dragged his score down, may have been more but didnt look too closely. I cant speak for anyone else but I did see that one.

      Personally speaking I hadnt even finished my army (dragon princes) and got full points but I made the effort to get everything not completely finished at least 1-2 high lights everywhere and fully based everything which always makes the difference.

    4. I played Glen, James WoC, Peter W, Dave and Caleb. Only Glen got full painting and I felt that that was pretty spot on.

      Peter W could easily get his to full marks with a few nights work. The others need more work but at least now have some sort of roadmap.

      I think Sam got the scores pretty right and I suspect in future you'll see more of the field hit at or near max

  2. Best event presentation wise I've ever been too.

    Pete's put heaps of work into terrain and tables and seeing 24 well painted armies battling it out over these tables was awesome!

    Big thumbs up from me

  3. I spent a lot of time in the weekend just admiring my opponents armies. In combination with the great terrain it was very memorable for me, the cinematic feel of the game was alive and well (as well as some great competitive games with some quality banter). Be it a players first army or their 5th, I really enjoy seeing the effort people were putting in and the improvements they make between events. The checklist gives some clear feedback and ways you can improve your score.


  4. I see the positives of pushing people but yes I think the level and amount of points difference is above what I am going to achieve unless I pay Sam to paint my stuff for me which I can't afford as I'm going to be a student again next year.

    Torn on the painting to be honest, no complaints in that it was clear in advance I think Sam marked the painting according to that. That said it does mean that I don't think I will make the top 10 again in a tournament. I played the top players including 1st & 3rd, think I played pretty well in my games and then when the painting is applied I drop from 4th to 8th.

    My army is not perfect but I have spent a lot of time on it, I don't enjoy painting at all it's a chore to me and I can't afford to have someone else paint it for me. I spent the time to get my army fully painted to a basic standard, based, themed and with movement trays because I know others enjoy playing painted armies so that is why I have put in the time doing something I don't enjoy and that is still at a level to lose 10 points from my total.

    It seems that the people who are the best painters now have painting awards (a good thing) but also have a leg up on 70% of the field. I know the argument was that it's all part of the hobby but I could for example pay someone to paint my army and gain 25 battle points I can't pay someone to play for me and get an extra 25 battle points (unless I pay my opponents to take a dive hmm....).

    Can I also mention that I know I'm wierd in that I like to play a different list each time and I'm working through the lists but using the level of presentation as a form of comp also means it works to limit people from experimentation and different lists. Every time I want to try a new build I have to then paint those models which in the case of Skaven means often up to 100 more models. I do this as I find it more fun and I think my opponents enjoy playing different lists more.

    This rewards people for picking say a rock hard "net list" getting someone to paint it and then bringing that same army to every tournament. I never have to paint anything, I have a solid tough optimised list and you will have an automatic point head start over 60-70 % of any given field which only gets applied at the end.

    I enjoyed my games anyway and it was a good tournament but thats my feedback on the painting.

    Dave A

    1. Hi Dave

      Looking at your army, most of the basecoating stages are done well. You are past the hard and tedious part :)! Seriously, you are on the home stretch. Grab a few pots of Agrax Earthshade, slap it all over your models. Then just use the same basecoat colours on the raised areas and your army will look really good and you will gain a fair few points.

    2. Hi Sam, Yes I know the stuff I brought just needs the above but I don't plan to take a Skrolk list to the next tournament, I want to run a Thrott list :) However while I will of course use some of the models I have to the above stage it will involve starting from scratch on the rat ogres, giant rats & clanrats. I am painfully aware that means going through all the long tedious stage to then get to a point where I will be at a basic level and give myself a 10+ point penalty going into a tournament with a deliberately non-optimal list.

      I was going through playing with lists which I enjoy and I found myself actively altering my lists based it what models it would require painting from scratch so I find myself deciding if I really want to spend X hours doing something I really don't like just for the sake of taking a different list. Then I find myself with a list that I'm just not enthused by and a list of painting that I still need to do just so that I can attend.

      Just want to say again that I am not complaining about how you marked it, I agreed with you at the time and I knew what the standards were well before the tournament. This is just me giving my point of view on the painting list as asked for, not a argh I got robbed I'm never going to another tournament rant :) Trying to give constructive feedback.

      Long story short I agree that the entire tournament presentation level was excellent which was nice for everyone but I was surprised that only 6-7? people out of the 24 met the standards for full points and looking at some of the other armies there who were much better than mine and still didn't make full points I found kind of disheartening. I honestly don't see myself getting to full points on painting even if I picked just 1 list and took it to every tournament without paying someone else to do it.

      Not saying take away the painting aspect just saying consider lowering it to a more inclusive level or lower the percentage of the total score allocated to painting.

      Also to chip in on the display board thing I would prefer that was not included purely for people flying in or those who don't have cars (or who car pool) you often don't have much space/weight and it does not effect the look of the army on the table at all.

      Dave A.

  5. So if you look at the the Checklist Sam used where would the changes be?

    People can email an amended checklist and I'll put together a blog post of that feedback.

    That said, of all the armies on show, only Hamish Forbes Ogres were ones that I'd give max points that didn't get it. All the others were either works in progress or had stopped short of what I think a tournament level army should be. For instance Peter W's later stuff looks really good but the early stuff doesn't hold up well to today's painting. It could be easily achieved with 2-3 nights work doing a wash then highlight

    1. Thanks for the complement Pete... I think my army looked really good from a distance but a couple of things let me down... I borrowed 2 models (butcher because I don't have one (yet!) and Iron blaster (Ross still has the ogre rider...). The two models were better painted than mine but didn't fit the overall theme...
      If you look at my highlighting, up close it is quite clumsy and my base coating is rough..(obviously no the bits that Ross painted!) I can probably tidy things up...

      My suggestion is to have a checklist out of 35, but anything over 30 gains maximum points... this then lifts the % for those in the 20's while still rewarding the top...

    2. sorry that should read out of 45!

      I think some of the top points (painted to a 'master class' for example) are a little too subjective.

      I also agree with the comment on rank and file... Ogres, with few models and big painting surfaces are fairly easy, however, my Orc army, including the movement trays would be an issue... Will have to put an army together to see what it would get. On the other hand I would pick up lots of conversion points!

  6. In general I like the idea of a checklist as it does give a person an idea of what to aim for. I do have some reservations on 2 things. The first being the inclusion on points being awarded for a display board which has no bearing on how the army is viewed in a game, and the second being that in the context of how an army looks in game the bar is set slightly high.
    For me the painting score represents how an army looks for your opponent from across the table and the Best Presented awards ( There were 3 of them ) rewards those that have the artistic skill/talent to go beyond a tabletop level. Now it wouldnt affect my enjoyment at a tournament or anything like that but painting to a high level is a skill in my opinion.
    One thing I would be interested in seeing is if anyone who didnt get max presentation got best presented votes and if any who did get max didnt get best presented votes?


    1. I'm quite surprised by the amount of comments this display board point has gathered over the weekend. Would you prefer it to be out of 44 and remove the display board point?

      It seems to me that people are thinking of it as dropping a point because they don't have a display board, but really its probably one of the easiest points there. Get a tray, put your normal basing on it and done. If you can't be bothered doing that then you can do some converting, highlighting or freehand instead to meet the 32 points required.

      My only issue with the display board is transporting it. It's quite difficult for people travelling from outside of Wellington to bring one but then again they can just get the point elsewhere anyways.

    2. 4 people got best painted votes who did not get full paint. Everybody who got max points had best painted nominations.

      To be honest, marking somebody's army with a checklist system, and voting for best painted armies are two very different things. You can achieve a very good overall effect on an army in a relatively short amount of time by using some simple techniques and products. Washes are the perfect example. So many people could have lifted their painting score just by applying a wash to the figures, and then re applying the basecoat to the raised areas to give a simple highlight. When people vote for their favorite armies, I think that's exactly what they are doing, it's their favourite, not necessarily the most technically painted, it is purely subjective. It is much more the overall effect of the army that people vote for over the technical side of things. Well that's just my opinion anyway.

      A display board was worth 1 point. Probably the easiest point to get on the entire sheet. Understand about travelling with one can be difficult, although a picture frame painted and flocked easily fits in a suitcase. Any out of towners are more than welcome to borrow mine if need be. (for a small fee of course ;))

      The average painting score was a 31 which I think everybody should be proud of. I reckon half the field really put extra effort into their armies which I can only view as positive.

      I think the checklist system is the best way to go, but admit it needs some tweaking (twerking?). Some of the highlighting points were quite hard to give and possibly need looking at. I haven't had time to look at possible options yet.

      Thanks to everybody for making the event an easy one to TO.

    3. You are right it is one of the easiest points that you can get aside from just having movement trays! Which is part of the reason that it shouldn't be part of the presentation score. If someone cant get "35" points and dont have a display board in the future then you got to think they are kind of foolish.

      Yet to me the display board has no real purpose. I maybe able to transport my army table to table on one, But I managed to do that with no problems in the same containers that I can also use to transport my army in the car. It has no visual effect in the game for your opponent.

      My line of thinking is to remove the display board point and drop the max to 34 instead of 35. This makes each presentation point a person gets for their actual army (and what an opponent looks at) worth slighty more and yet doesnt make it that much easier to get max points.


    4. If it makes no real difference whats the harm I having it there?

      Cant say for certain but Id guess at least some of the reason for Charlies insane Tower display was because of the of the point for it and it was fraking awesome to see. If it even slightly encourages more people to do the same then it totally should be there, because I wanna see more of that!

    5. this. that display board was awesome.

    6. It was awesome to see Charlies Tower but i would assume he didnt need the point for the board and it was aimed more at getting best presented which it certainly achieved. My ideas around the display board point is a way to remove work from achieving max presentation scores without reducing what i think is the core aspects of the score.

      Quote - Sam
      " To be honest, marking somebody's army with a checklist system, and voting for best painted armies are two very different things. You can achieve a very good overall effect on an army in a relatively short amount of time by using some simple techniques and products. Washes are the perfect example. So many people could have lifted their painting score just by applying a wash to the figures, and then re applying the basecoat to the raised areas to give a simple highlight. When people vote for their favorite armies, I think that's exactly what they are doing, it's their favourite, not necessarily the most technically painted, it is purely subjective. It is much more the overall effect of the army that people vote for over the technical side of things. Well that's just my opinion anyway."
      To me this is the heart of the disagreement over the checklist. If an army looks good does it matter if it is painted in a technically correct way? After all art is subjective.

      But as i said earlier i like the idea of a check list and having the painting scored the same way would not effect my in enjoyment at a tournament.


  7. It would become really sad if "paying to win" became a reality.

    A suggestion would be that if you didn't paint it yourself, you get capped at 25 instead of 35 under the current system.

    I also disagree that you can get 35 with just a little effort. It is a *lot* of effort. 25 is possible with a little effort or a work in progress.

    I also also disagree with the hard caps talking about each model instead of each unit. The goblin in the 8th rank is only going to be seen when it's taken off the table - it doesn't need 3 layers of blending and every hair individually painted. The general, who is the centrepiece and focus - yes. The 48th goblin - no. I realise there is the 80% threshhold to cover some of this but I think it needs to be more explicit that rear ranks aren't going to be held up to the same scrutiny as a character.

    More points on offer for converting please. Modelling skill is just as important to the hobby as painting skill isn't it?

    One last thought is that the top players are the ones who devote the most time to anything. The top players are going to be better at the game than others. Is it double-dipping to reward the top players again for painting?


    1. One could point out that people already do "Pay to Win" to an extent.

      I mean you can go out and buy the latest greatest filth, do the bare minimum paint job and head out to crush all opposition if youre a decent player. Just saying...

    2. James M, while your point is true to an extent, there is a difference between providing a potential boost that could still go wrong, to a real points boost where you can see the $$s you pay equating directly to points in your final result.


  8. I think conversion points are a dangerous road to go down... Not sure there should be any. Unlike painting, where only a dick (hi Jeff!) will claim he likes how his army looks in grey, I think someone is perfectly within their rights to say they don't feel the need to change their models in any way. This shouldn't cost you tournament points. A display board is one way to reward 'extra effort' without forcing conversions, and I like that component. Maybe have some set of points for above and beyond the call of duty, which you can max by doing some combination of display board, conversion, themed well, and so on. This wouldn't require anyone to convert, but would incentivise doing some noon painting work on your army. Story could fit in here too.

    I am interested in the answers to Caleb's queries.

  9. Thumbs up from me for a great event. It was nice to fly all the way to Wellington to see really awesome armies. All the armies have come a long way from when I saw some of them at the NZTC earlier this year. I think everyone can be proud of their efforts.
    To the folks that still have some reservations about painting points, or conversion points or display boards I have an analogy to share. It would be like waking up one weekend and deciding that you wanted to play tennis, turning up to an inter-club tournament, not winning the event, then complaining that the event wasn't set up for you to win. Painting points are exactly the same, it takes a little time and patience. I was marked down for not having all my models on movement trays (so easy to do I could have kicked myself, but hey, I was lazy and could have done it but I was busy painting Epic miniatures) and no free-hand work on a banner or shield (I'm not the greatest at this but I am looking forward to enhancing my skills over the next few months!). I'm going to pick up these points next time and my army is going to look absolutely ace. I want to flesh out the depth of the highlights too and get some of the basing a little more consistent.

    1. Alternatively you could say it is like training long and hard to be the best female tennis player you could be, showing up to the tournament, doing well and then being knocked down a few places because you had neglected to look like a super model. You may have been good at tennis, but you looked terrible doing it..

      I'm thinking Marion Bartoli styles.

      It seems for you some that the gaming and hobby aspects of Fantasy are completely inseparable and of equal importance. That's fine, but I know that for many that's not the case, including myself.

      We're not discussing what the system in place is, we're discussing what people view it should be. Part of that means people get to suggest that the weightings used in this system aren't what they want out of their tournament experience. There are plenty of people for whom painting is nought but a chore and are happy to accept a painting standard somewhat less than what this system will allow and still let you have max points.

    2. Okay then, replace tennis analogy with Dressage (re: turnout of the horse and rider clothing)...

      But that wasn't really my point. The system is what it is, and if you are a beginner painter or someone who needs to do more work to get the models up to scratch then you shouldn't feel too deflated if you don't meet the cap. Just take away your feedback and apply yourself for a couple of evenings to achieve those final points. If you are a beginner or someone who has been slightly lazy (that's including myself) it's actually unrealistic to expect full painting points.

      Just a couple of quick questions. Will you attend future tournaments with this system in place? And why would someone like yourself, who is obviously dedicated to further academic studies, does weight training and who is obviously a very capable individual, not then extend his abilities into painting? I know you probably think it's a chore, but isn't it immensely satisfying upon completion? The same could be said of writing an assignment too, yet you still do those things, you still sit exams (and I haven't heard of anyone really enjoying exams!)?
      I think the best thing for you to do would be to actually attend an event like Skitterleap and see the quality of all the armies in the hall - you would then realise the bar had been truly raised and collectively met.

    3. Ha, dressage or dog shows is a pretty good way of looking at it now that you bring it up.

      The tournament systems are very much fluid, previous to Skitterleap the Wellington system was realistically "show up with anything and get maximum painting points". I myself wasn't particularly impressed with this system.

      I will attend future tournaments where this system is in place, I'm not a fan of the system as it stands but that's hardly enough to outweigh the enjoyable experience that I've had at all the Wellington events I've attended. I certainly won't complain about the system at the event or to the umpire as I think that would be rude, however if feedback is asked for I'll give it. I didn't attend Skitterleap due to exams. In a similar vein I won't be using this system for the one event a year I intend to run or if I put my name up for Natcons/Nicons again. That's the TOs prerogative, the man who does the work, makes those choices. All the power to them and I think it's good to have variety in the scene.

      Painting is not my preferred part of the hobby, although as you suggest I do feel satisfied on completion (sounds dirty). Sometimes though, as in the case with my hundreds of night goblins it's actually just relief that its over. I don't know if you've seen the pics but I've been working on some Dark Elves which I believe when complete would easily make the 35 mark. I've enjoyed painting them to a degree but to be honest I'm not sure it'll be worth the massive time investment they are and will be hesitant to pursue that level in the future as I'd rather either paint up another army or do something else altogether.

      Thanks for the compliments, I like to think that I can force myself to do most things (I have cleaned bathrooms with toothbrushes.) but ultimately I prefer to reserve that for really important things (sparkling clean urinals!). I see a real diminishing returns aspect to my painting, I imagine as I paint more (which I will) the point where this occurs will ultimately change. When it's my spare time, I tend to just do what I enjoy. Ultimately all my armies will be at or above the 35/35 and I'm keen to get Sam up to see what he would have given me. Ultimately though I don't think there is a requirement for all armies to be at this standard. For myself, it's mostly about the game and I'd like a level playing field that requires less investment of time.

      I'll be at the next Welly event (not Vermintide as I'm away for work the next 5 weeks), possibly umpiring at this stage so look forward to seeing it and I'm glad you think the bar was raised. It might be semantics, but if the bar was collectively met it seems more people should have capped. Hopefully this proportion rises as time goes on.

      Cheers, and hopefully see you at an event in the not too distant future.

  10. I think the painting score, whilst may get tweaked some, is fantastic. I bought my 2nd best painted army with 4 big model conversions. I had a display base. All my bases were flocked and painted as with my movement trays. My army was themed and all my ducks were lined up in a row. I got 35 points by going through and marking the points I needed. It's not my most fantastic army but it's got minimal highlighting.

    As to the display bases, only 3 people brought display bases. This was easy points as you just have to buy cork pin board, pva, sand, some flock to match your army and 2 poster colours to base and dry brush. This is the minimum you need and you can do it in less than a hour over a day. Easy painting points and costs less than a unit or individual character model usually.

  11. I did my display board in a day... It wasn't totally finished, but it looked ok.. Once my tech dept at work finishes the wooden frame, I will be able to drop differing boards in..

    For those who didn't see, I used a panel from the citadel gaming board... I am having a wooden frame built to give it solidity, more of a tray look and hell stop things sliding off. It will be a cynthia to fly with (only drawback)..

  12. While I didn't attend, I have had a similar debate before around conversion points. Making people convert figures for the sake of it rules out the option of building armies with interesting alternate figures.

    If the conversion points are designed to give the armies some variety and distinguish them from other similar armies at the event then it misses the mark. If the aim is to make people spend time changing figures for the sake of it then it achieves that goal.

    The other competition, that I can think of, where this kind of painting check list is used is Adepticon in the US. At Adepticon this system works better because you are restricted to using only GW figures in your army.


  13. Interesting talk. I think there is a happy medium here.

    The obvious intention is to raise the standard of armies attending the event, but in some cases I think it goes to far.

    Its the same old adage, where people start getting over zealous and ahead of themselves, and penalties start getting dished out for those not talented enough or without as much spare time. It reminds me of those dark times where you would get a sports hit for bringing Daemons to a tournament...Its just poor form.

    Some people are time poor, others are just not as talented as some. Forcing people to convert models to score top points, likewise freehand is over zealous. Items like these should be left to deciding on "best painted" awards an the like. Similarly, what is the problem with getting/paying someone else to paint your army? Its a fact that there are as many people out there that prefer to play games and care little about painting as there are people who prefer to paint and care less about playing. Setting up a system that caters purely for one group is not going to promote nor grow the tournament community.

    I think trying to increase the standard of armies attending is admirable, only that there is such a thing as too far. It tends to happen when you get someone of talent in the painting/modelling side of things to set up a system.

    I think the system needs to:
    - Be achievable by someone of meagre talent
    - Not be exclusive
    - Take into account different peoples preferences ie hobby/gameing
    - Encourage/promote a high standard of presentation

    If people want to pay for someone to paint their army, its fine by me. They should still get full points, just be excluded from the painting prizes run alongside.

    For me, I come to tournaments to play the game. Yes its nice to see beautiful armies on display, but I'm a gamer > hobby type.

    1. A lot of what you say is not really the case though Tim....unless you are only using the last 3-4 years as your time horizon.

      MOST tournaments until four years ago had extremely graduated painting scales. They were a legacy of the Games Workshop GTs and Rogue Trader scoring systems. As someone who regularly competed for Best Painted Army, Best Army and Players Choice it meant that I got a real head start over the field and given that I could also play a bit....well it translated into Best Overall.

      About 3-4 years ago I put a capped painting mark into my Fantasy events whereby as long as you had tabletop quality you got full marks. And guess what happened?

      Painting standards fell and only a few people finished armies to the previous standard. Certainly there was no progression. (Actually sounds a bit like socialism).

      This is my attempt to kickstart the process again. People are complaining that only 7 armies got full marks and that the bar was set too high.

      I disagree with that. Sixteen of the 24 armies were one of three things:

      1) relics of a previous era that needed some updating
      2) work in progress that will get better with time and effort (and now have checklist to do that)
      3) Not tabletop standard but could easily get more points with some easy fixes - wash, single highlight, flock, a banner

      As I said I am happy to look at changes to the detail of the checklist and make things clearer (easier to attain) but only in the context that the "Hamish Forbes Ogres" is the bar for full marks.

    2. I am talking about the last 4 years. I have never attended a GW event, nor do I intend to.

      There was obviously a reason the former system was abandoned, and reverting back to it does not sound like a logical step to make.

      I was not there, and thus do not know the level of presentation a the event. But that is besides the point. We have all read the painting points system, and heard the arguments. I was simply stating my interpretation as feedback was asked for.

      Like I mentioned, I am a gamer before I am a painter. I find events that focus on subjective scoring to be undesirable, thus I would not normally attend. There was a spat of tournaments not that long ago in Chch area that often exceeded 50% subjective. That's not a tournament, that's a hobby weekend. I am not the only one and was simply pointing out for every person of type a, there is a person of type b.

      Creating a system that only caters for one group will not grow the scene nor achieve goals. I think the current format is ok but still too prohibitive. I also think a separate award should be judged based on hobby aspects alongside the main event. This caters to the broadest demographic IMO. Saying that you have to have your movement trays flocked and colour as opposed to plain black is too much IMO.

    3. >There was obviously a reason the former system was abandoned, and reverting back to it does not sound like a logical step to make<

      The reason was because I decided to. The reversion is because I believe army quality has dropped to what I , as a TO, see as an unacceptable level.

      >Creating a system that only caters for one group will not grow the scene nor achieve goals. I think the current format is ok but still too prohibitive. <

      I don't believe it only caters for one group....I believe everyone benefits from playing against armies that meet a certain standard. Moving to a system that rewards armies for meeting this standard certainly meets my goals. I go out of my way to create nice terrain for the events I organise, I have expectations that players make a certain effort with their armies to 1) participate and 2) get full painting points.

      >Like I mentioned, I am a gamer before I am a painter. I find events that focus on subjective scoring to be undesirable, thus I would not normally attend.<

      And that is a totally valid stance. But as a TO it is equally valid that I can organise the type of event I want. There are varying views on whether the system is too onerous and that is why I've sought feedback. For instance, you have said flocked movement trays are a step to far. The good thing with this system is that you don't necessarily have to have them. You instead can make a display board OR do some conversions OR do a freehand banner OR do some more advanced highlighting.

      That to me is the beauty of such a checklist. You don't have to do any one thing as you have alternatives in how to get the army from basecoat to the cap

  14. Looks like Skitterleap was a resounding success. Congrats to all those who placed.

    In general, I think the desire to increase painting standards is a good thing. However, looking at the Skitterleap results it looks like a gap widened between those who can/have complied and those who have not. It will be interesting to see where this leads...

    My two cents:
    I wonder if it is worth considering the weighting that Painting contributes to the overall tournament score? I see in Skitterleap it was 25%, this resulted in painting difference having a large impact on the overall rank. Perhaps a happy medium might be to keep the new painting scheme but reduce the painting percentage for the tournament to 20%? This would encourage both the hobby and power gamer whilst still rewarding those players that excel in both.

    1. And that's what I'm looking to do next event Wil.....drop Painting to 20% and increase sports to the same

    2. That seems a great way to increase standards but lessen the impact of those standards on the overall rankings.

      I suspect that this change in weighting will smooth out the impact of the new painting score sheet whilst ensuring that in all cases where players are relatively even on battlepoints that the presentation quality of their army is the deciding factor between the two players who are otherwise equal. Can't argue with that! Gets my support.

    3. And if you want to see the "Hamish Forbes Ogre Standard' have a look at my blog...

      mwahaha ha

  15. I should wade in here and drop 2c, seeing as I have the dubious honour of having dropped the most due to painting scores (6 places from 9th equal to 15th).

    I really like the overall format of having a pre defined check list going in, and a TO discussing paint scores as they are marked. It leaves it open and concise, while retaining some flexibility. Having more points available than necessary to max out allows you to push one aspect that you shine better at to cover a weak spot elsewhere.

    I'm not an overly technical or proficient painter, and it's definitely a case for me of painting to play rather than painting for the enjoyment of itself. Though I do enjoy a finished piece - playing the game motivates me to get there and tournament scores (theoretically) drive me to improve. My deepest skills currently include basecoat, maybe a second colour if lucky, followed by a wash and a single highlight. Followed by the inevitable fixing up mistakes stage. I like to play painted armies though, realise that this likely applies to my opponents also so have been endeavouring to improve my skills though art was never my strong point.

    I believe about 1/4 - 1/3 of my army is up to standard to get max points, with the remainder looking okay from a distance but with many parts unfinished. I converted a bsb on disc, swapped out my entire chaos warrior units arms and heads, other than that they are essentially model standard. While I initially agree that by definition you should not have to convert your models to max on painting (for all price gripes about GW their models are on the whole, amazing straight from the box), it is by far the smallest section weighing in at 4 pt so you aren't too crippled without any. Getting 1 pt from minimal swaps shouldn't be difficult for anyone with two hands, a hobby knife and some glue thought.

    Personally I lost my points mainly (as I understand) by simply being only 90% done on the rest of the army (ie. the majority) more than anything else. In that sense with the check list and comments from when it was marked I have a clear direction of where to go from here if I want to max out, the rest is up to me.

    Looking at raw battle points the top 3 positions did not change at all due to painting. Dave A, James Millington and myself took a hammering (dropping 4, 4 and 6 places respectively) and Glen B along with James Milner jumping 4 places. Everyone else is within 2 places of their raw score compared to adding in painting.

    I know Glens army well and looking over James Milner's army I agree they were both very nicely presented both well worth max points. Dave I haven't seen your army up close but agree than it's going to be difficult for you to max out while wanting to play a different Skaven army each time - though I think it's great you do and enjoy doing it. It took me almost a year to get my VC army to full painting points standard last year - that was when things were easier not sure how it would perform now.

    Horde armies are draining to collect at times, particularly every time you game and remove them from the table so quickly (or at least I did!). This is one point where I think the 80% limit on parts of the checklist (eg highlighting) should be reconsidered in light perhaps giving the TO the provision to simply override it if necessary in certain cases to bump up/down a point. While I plan to spend time highlighting and adding details to all my 30 model WoC army - that's only a weeks work or so - my 200 odd zombies will suffice with basecoat and wash which took me long enough without an airbrush. That may mean under current system I am doomed to never max out if I bring them without a significant investment in time that I could almost make and paint another whole army in. There is some merit in the argument that my choice of army was mine and mine alone.

    At the end of the day the checklist is a huge step in the right direction and a big thumbs up from me. I'm aiming for full points next time (or as near as I can get).