Thanksgiving RPG Tradition

I've been inspired by Chris (of RPG in Progress fame). A few days ago, he posted his thoughts on making RPGs a family tradition at Thanksgiving, and I'm going to make this my mission for next year's Thanksgiving family gathering. Magic: The Gathering used to be our Thanksgiving game of choice, but we have almost stopped playing games altogether. This year, we played one or two games of Rummy and stopped. Where's the fun in that?!?!

This is a tragedy that cannot be left as is. Family time should be more fun, and I'm taking it upon myself to remedy that. Who wants to just sit around and eat?

Palladium Books Surprise Package Unboxing

Christmas on Black Friday! I received my Palladium Books surprise package in the mail and decided to do an unboxing video. I normally hate those... but I decided that, considering I didn't know exactly what was in the box, I'd give it a go. Here's the result:

I'm new to the whole video thing, so forgive any blunders I may have made in the video. For example, I know that next time I should probably close the blinds on the window, because the light from that direction is a little annoying.

Now, a few things I neglected to mention in the video:
  • I spent $47.11 (including shipping) on the surprise package. I received $100.85 worth of product just retail value. That's an awesome value.
  • All of the books they sent me were signed by multiple members of the Palladium Books staff (Kevin Siembieda, Kathy Simmons, Alex Marciniszyn, and a few others I'm having a hard time making out).
  • I didn't make a long wish list, but I received everything that I put on mine (plus some other stuff). I wouldn't expect this if you choose to order, but it is interesting to note that it does happen.
I've added my signed copy of The Rifter #52 as well as the Men of Magic miniature pack to the Outsyder Gaming Christmas Giveaway. (I'm "secretly" hoping the winner doesn't choose The Rifter #52, though. The Men of Magic miniatures wouldn't be too big of a loss since I have two packs of them.)

Maryland is Dark Reaper Country

I was riding down Interstate 81 a week or so ago and couldn't believe my eyes... a town "named after" an Eldar phoenix lord! Apparently, Maryland is dark reaper country, because Maugan Ra has a town there. It's called Maugansville, and Maugans Avenue runs right through the middle of it.

I wonder if the locals realize that their town's offbeat name is so well-known among those of us who roll dice and push around little painted models? Are there other places like this with names that match 40K characters?

Outsyder Gaming Christmas Giveaway

Yeah, I know it's Thanksgiving... but I want to talk about CHRISTMAS! :-D It's just a month away, and I've decided to promote the blog a bit by giving away some free stuff! Hooooray! Read on to see what you can win and how you can enter.

The Prizes
The winner will get to choose one of the following items:
This is a low-budget site and these are items that I either managed to pick up really cheap or that I received as duplicate gifts. All of these items are unused. Those that were originally in shrink wrap are still in the original shrink wrap. Any wear and tear that you might find on these came from their time on the store shelf, on my shelf collecting dust, or in the shipping process.

How to Enter
Completing any of the following will get your name entered in the drawing.
  • "Like" Outsyder Gaming on Facebook (Already "liked" it? Already entered!)
  • Become a follower (Already a follower? Already entered!)
  • Follow me on Twitter (Already a follower? Already entered!)
  • Tweet a link to Outsyder Gaming (and include @theoutsyder83 so I'll see it)
  • Digg or Stumble Outsyder Gaming (and send me a link to your profile so I can see it)
  • Add Outsyder Gaming to your blog roll (and send me a link to your site)
  • Blog about this drawing/giveaway (and send me a link)
You can be entered as many times as you want, but no more than one entry per day for those that can be done multiple times (Tweets, Diggs, and Stumbles, for example).

The Drawing
On December 17th, I'll compile all the entries and pull one winner. I'll get in touch with the winner (most likely through email) and ask for a prize choice and a shipping address. The winner will have three days to respond before I draw a new one. I'll send the chosen item ASAP and hopefully it will get there before Christmas.

Questions, Comments, or Suggestions? 
Just leave me a comment or email me. I'll get back to you as quickly as I can! This is the first time I've ever done this, so feedback is welcome.

Updates & Clarifications
Just a few notes that I've added since the initial posting:
  • This drawing is not limited to US residents.
  • Everyone who enters is eligible to win except members of my family.
  • Just added some of the goodies from my Palladium Books Christmas surprise package to the list

Warhammer Wisdom

I came across this post over at Scroll Caddy and found myself impressed by the wisdom and simplicity of the message. I would encourage anyone who plays Warhammer, Warhammer 40K, or any other tabletop wargame to heed this advice: How to Play Warhammer Correctly

On an unrelated note, I would encourage everyone to check back in tomorrow for a special announcement from Outsyder Gaming... I think you will find the visit to be well worth your time!

House of Paincakes

I just joined another blog network, and unlike the ones who dropped me earlier this year, I think this one is a much better fit for Outsyder Gaming. I write a lot about wargaming, but I also write about RPGs and occasionally collectible card games or PC games. As I've said earlier (if I haven't said it, I meant to), I prefer my blog networks with a focus but not an iron grip. I really like how the RPGBN allowed me to submit an RSS feed just for my RPG posts. While House of Paincakes didn't do the same, they do list "D20 System" on their Join Us! page, and their main requirement just seems to be that each member site must "pertain to the tabletop wargaming hobby in some capacity." As a somewhat eclectic gamer, that kind of flexibility I can certainly respect.

Thank you, House of Paincakes, for welcoming me on board. It's good to be part of the crew.

Dark Eldar 2nd Wave

I'm not currently playing Dark Eldar, but the second wave of models sure makes me want to purchase a few just to paint! I probably wouldn't be able to do justice to the coolness of the new mandrakes, but I'd still like to try my hand at it.

But what might be even more interesting to me is the ability to field a bunch of Green Goblin imitations. Hellions might just be what sucks me in and gets me to play the Dark Eldar.

Sanguinary Priest in Terminator Armor Conversion

I finally managed to finish at least putting together my assault terminator squad and the sanguinary priest that runs with them. I had the assault terminators done, but I was unsure about how I'd do the priest because I assumed when I bought the bits that the priest would have a storm bolter. That threw me off a bit and delayed the whole process.

Of all the conversions I've ever done, this is the one I think I'm least proud of... it's basically a terminator sergeant with the storm bolter cut off. It is a kitbash of sorts, with bits from a regular terminator kit as well as bits from the Dark Angels veterans kit, but the end result is still rather bland. I might try my hand at greenstuff and see if I can manage a decent looking blood chalice, but something tells me I'll end up too lazy and just run him as-is. To make him stand out a little better, I'm going to paint this guy in the reverse color scheme as the assault terminators he'll be joining. He'll be primarily red with dark details, whereas the assault terminators will be primarily black with red details... but that's about as unique as he'll get.

All that said, though... as plain and unimpressive as this conversion is, at least it is super-simple. Anyone with a basic box of terminators can throw something like this together pretty quickly. Go-go quick n' easy sanguinary priest!

Outsyder Gaming on Facebook

I recently gave Palladium Books a hard time about not being caught up on social networking sites... and then I realized that I wasn't even following my own advice! So I've decided to start a Facebook fan page for Outsyder Gaming. There isn't too much there yet, but I'm still working on it... check it out:

Guardians of the Covenant?

I was browsing through codices that I haven't read the other day in HobbyTown and stumbled across this chapter in the Dark Angels codex. I had never heard of these guys before, but it seems that my custom Blood Angels look an awful lot like them!

Knowing When to Quit

I've been "running" an online Rifts game since early 2010, but I let my players know this week that the game probably wouldn't be updated again. It started out as an experiment, running the game on Google Wave so that we'd be playing the game and playing with the cool new website at the same time. Unfortunately, the DM (me) ran out of steam on several occasions and had to take so many breaks that the campaign never really got off its feet.

Truly, the game was on hiatus more often than it was actually running, and I finally decided to stop stringing people along and just be honest. I doubt I'll ever be able to be involved in a successful play-by-post game. Finding the time and focus is tough, and I don't have the self control or the dedication to force myself to make it work. I really enjoy play-by-post games when they're convenient, but they aren't convenient for long enough periods of time for me to keep one going at an acceptable pace.

What it really comes down to is this: running a successful online game is unrealistic for me because my personality flaws and my real-life commitments prevent me from doing so. I need to stick to blogging and playing games face to face. The online gaming thing just isn't for me. I know now that I need to call it quits. I apologize to my players, Matt and Quim, who I feel I've let down by ending the game.

Stormraven Gunship Leak

Well, I'm disappointed. Apparently, Games Workshop accidentally leaked a picture of the new stormraven gunship, which I intended to purchase for my Blood Angels army. Why am I disappointed? I don't like the look of the model at all.

Maybe it's just the angle... maybe I'll like it better when I see the real thing... but as of right now, I'm not impressed. It's not that I think it's terrible... it's just that it sucks compared to the Imperial Guard valkyrie. I want my Blood Angels stuff to look awesome... and this just ain't cutting it. So much for running one of these... I might kitbash this with a valkyrie and see if I can come up with something that looks better, but I'm definitely not putting this on my tabletop as-is.

Further thoughts here.

Palladium Books on Facebook?!?!

Thanks to Quim's post for the scoop... it seems that Palladium Books has taken a step into the 21st century by creating an official Facebook fan page. Now they just need to update their horrendously outdated website! I'm not really trying to knock Palladium Books... it just surprises me when companies that have been struggling don't take advantage of free online tools like Facebook to help push their products. I for one am glad that Palladium Books has finally made the leap... even though I'd like to see a system revision (read: overhaul), I still love their products and want to see the company survive and thrive.

New Eldar Hornet from Forgeworld

There are some things that I would love to have displayed in my game room, but that I will probably never use for some reason or another. The new Eldar Hornet from Forgeworld is the newest item on that list for me. It looks awesome... similar in style to other Eldar vehicles yet unique enough in form to make it stand out. Unfortunately, I'll probably never get one for the following reasons:

  • Experimental Rules: In 40k, my gaming group hasn't branched out beyond the basic book and our chosen codices (well... aside from using this free pdf). Because of this, I'd feel like a cheat if I brought this to the table.
  • Inflated Point Cost: Okay, I realize that the rules are just experimental and they're probably inflated some to make sure that these things don't ruin the fun in games that would otherwise be fairly balanced. However, I'm a power gamer... and these aren't that much less expensive than wave serpents, but with much lower survivability.
  • Price Tag: Forgeworld products are always expensive. This was no surprise. Some models I can justify paying fifty bucks for (technically it's only 32 in British pounds, but the American dollar sucks right now). This isn't one of them. I would want to run a squadron... and $150 I will not pay.
Now, with all that complaining out of the way, I have to say that I'm really excited that the Eldar finally seem to have a fast attack choice that doesn't suck. Yeah, it's pricey, but it still beats out every other fast attack choice hands down. I've complained about the irony in the Eldar codex already: we're supposed to be the fast army, but our fast attack choices suck. Thanks, Forgeworld, for throwing us a bone... even if it's one I won't use unless this unit gets added in the next codex update.

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