Monday, 25 April 2016

Reviews and Recommendations

War Gamer Gadgets

Actually time for a review I think, specifically in this case four different reviews.  I've recently been buying up accessories for Guild Ball, outside of the normal Steam Forged supplied tokens and the like.  There is a huge market for extra measuring templates, tokens and the like, so after getting my officially mercandise (in the form of the influence and status markers), I decided to have a look around for a few things I felt would be really handy.  So without further a due.

AoE Templates - Counter attack bases

One of the main things that I couldn't get from Steamforged (they were part of the Kickstarter counter set, but aren't in retail) were AoE markers.  Now I play Alchemists, so I have a bit of a need for AoE markers.  I'm planning on playing Smoke as my main captain, so I go from needing some, to needing rather a lot.

There are a lot of places that do AoE markers, some look really good, but only Counter attack bases seemed to mark off all the points I wanted.  Firstly that they didn't have additional "effect" bits, and by this I mean extra bits of plastic flames or the like in the middle.  Thats just a personal preference.  Secondly that the outer edge was small, as they need to fit over models, so if they are thick edged you get less space into which models can fit.  Finally they needed to have good colour options so I can see what I'm barfing onto the table at any given time.

These are lovely strong transparent plastic, that isn't going to take up too much space on the field, and not only are they multicoloured they also have the effect written on them in case I'm being ultra dense.  Which happens a lot.  Counter attack bases also sent these out really quickly, and to add an extra star to their name, I realised I needed 2 more than I had ordered, so I did an extra order and paid the extra packing.  I promptly got a refund and everything got sent out together.  Really nice of them, even though I was willing to suffer for my stupidity.  I now have 2 Burning, 4 Poison and 4 Cover AoE rings, because Smoke is quite prone to outputting these things.

Status Tokens - Broken Egg Games

I saw these on a Battlehammer Video.  I had to have them.  These are just beautiful little tokens they really are.

There are plenty of reasons and plenty of games that require status tokens.  In fact the Guild Ball set by Broken Egg Games are easily useful for Malifaux, and a slightly expanded range is available for Warmahordes as well.  Within the, frankly cheap on the wallet, set you get 5 of each of the main 4 status markers for Guild ball (poison, burning, bleeding and knockdown).  They are so well made, using clear plastic with double side printed backgrounds.  You get get versions that lie down, or if you like some with small bases that stand up.  I went with the standing versions because, well they look good.

I managed to snap one of the bases in two, but as luck would have it there were 2 spare in the packets I had received, so there really wasn't an issue.  All I will say is if the peg won't fit in the hole don't try and force it in... *cough*,  A careful bit of sanding down and they will fit together fine.  The blood tokens needed a little bit of superglue just to make sure they won't fall apart when you pick them up, and I needed to do the same for the odd one or two of the others, but mostly they don't need anything on them to hold them together.

Sadly I've not found the perfect UK supplier for these.  However, ordering from Broken Egg directly was a piece of cake, the shipping cost in minimal and they arrived within a week.  Can't ask for more really.

Movement/Range templates - Art of War Studios

Tape measures are bad, ok.

I will admit I don't fully understand the above statement, but I do realise that in a lot of circles the age of using a tape measure is gone.  I can understand the reasoning too; its harder to get the tape measure into place to actually measure accurately, there is always a bigger fault factor, and more importantly bending a tape measure makes it longer, so curved moves firstly increase the amount you move at that time, and slowly every measurement is wrong.

There are a lot of movement widgets out there, but they tend to cap out at around 5" or 6".  So I wanted a few things to sort out 8" ranges without having to chain together widgets, and also some smaller ranges so I didn't have to fit a whole widget onto the board to see if I'm in range.  Art of War Studios thankfully have a decent option here, and they look good, are made of hard plastic and come in Guild Ball team colours.

They are also quite thin, meaning they take up less space.  I can probably use them like normal widgets and do standing up on end manoeuvres to get models about the board.  I considered the metal multipart measures, but couldn't find a good range that were available in the UK, and generally I prefer trying to buy in the UK as you never know about shipping.  These fitted the bill for me, and was more than happy to get them.. along with

Guild Ball tournament tray - Art of War Studios

I've not bothered with display/tournament trays before.  Now this is partly because I've not gone to a lot of tournaments before.  Its is also because with Malifaux I would take my entire bulk collection of Neverborn with me and one tray is not enough.  If I were a better player perhaps it would be, as I would have a core set of models and one, may be two masters I would use all the time, but I was happy to use my foam carry case and packed everything in.

With Guild Ball at the very most I need space for 8 players and a ball.  Obviously a carry case is better for getting to the event, but once there the tray will be perfect.

I wanted something that would fit everything, and with the Art of War Studios tournament tray I "almost" manage it.  The difference here, to every other design I have seen is the layout, and the functionality.

Layout wise, this is the first try I saw that had the extra token tray to the right hand side (as photographed).  This space is divided up so that you can carry and separate off each of the tokens you may have spent a bit of money on that week... to the left of the main space is the standard card and tape (etc) space that appears on most boards and then in the middle is a blank area, with nothing in it to hold models.

Instead you get a separate board and 4 tabs.  Once in place you get a pretty standard model tray, but the tabs can be removed (so long as you don't glue them down, and apply a reasonable amount of pressure from below) and the tray can then be outfitted with a different centre board.  This means the tray can be fitted with a Malifaux tray, X-Wing Tray, or Infinity Tray.  I have none of the extra trays, but I can pick them up at a later date if I feel I need them.

Putting it together was simple, even for me, and while I did use a bit of glue to just make sure a sharp knock won't make it fall apart, I don't think it is actually needed.  As with Counter attack bases and Broken Egg Games, delivery of the items took all of a week, so I was really impressed.  In fact from order to dispatch it took only a couple of days (and that was over a weekend too), so its mostly royal mail I have to say took their time over sorting things out.

Looking Forward

There are, as with any game I want to tournament with, a few more things to pick up (most likely).  If nothing else I need to get a soft foam transportation box, as I find metal chips easily within my battlefoam bag.  However, very happy so far, and (ignoring the fact the below shows Malifaux models, my Guild ball are still on the painting desk) I think I have most of what I need to start doing some Tournaments.  Each of these items though can easily be used in many other games, so I look forward to getting some actual game time in soon.

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