Month: November 2017

The Great Conrad Clear Out!

So just read the last blog by my fellow FD dude Mike and am laughing out loud. Why you ask well I predict that the #hobbystreak will last as long as the #FDWHP! That’s not me being tres horrible, its me knowing Mike ūüėČ

Moving swiftly on before they spank me hard over what I have posted above, I have been toying with the idea of blogging about some more general stuff fuelled by my life experience on the cusp of my 55th birthday (yes I know you all find that hard to believe – you are so kind!) This has spewed forth from my psyche based on my horrendous torture of clearing my garage and study for our youngest son’s 21st birthday party (this despite me suggesting we have it in a hall). It was not to be and after what probably worked out to be a week and half’s work on and off (more on these last few Saturday) I am in a place where by I pretty much know whats in the garage and the study (aka man cave) is tidy. This is a good thing on two fronts, one its easier to game in and two Christmas is around the corner and the study is the site for one of the 2 trees we have in our house. More importantly we’ve been here since August 1997 and some of the hobby related stuff in the garage has been there since that time.

The BIG problem that I found myself confronting when clearing was the sheer horror inside me when I opened a new box of stuff up in the garage, not knowing what I was going to find and me then just reaching a point of sheer sadness, negativity and questioning why I had ever bought what I had bought. This feeling took away any of the original positive thoughts and emotions that I had and had stored away in my brain. It also made me reinforce what I have been feeling for the last couple of years – there is only so much time we have and I am not going to be able to do it all. Some of the things I found in there that I forgot I had was a whole Strigoi army based on a gypsy theme, an 28mm Indian ancients army, a 28mm Ancient Greek army, a 15mm ancient greek army, so many figures and so much more too.

This of course has meant that I have become a lot more brutal over what to keep and what to ebay and what to chuck away. Yes I said chuck away. I found myself easily binning stuff where before, I had an emotional connection to this stuff. It was cold and unfeeling (ok there was a little tinge of sadness in some cases).

There is the whole ebay thing. I go through spurts of ebaying stuff. Then I just need a rest away from it. I must continue doing this so that I can move the stuff that I have on to hopefully allow me to fund a little more 40k stuff for my Ad Mech but probably more likely a holiday or dealing with debts I have to pay.

The other issue is that this clear out has definitely effected my urge to game. I find myself lethargic over gaming at present. I still want to game. I love gaming but I feel that the buzz and excitement that you get when you have gotten that bug for a new shiny, has gone. I find myself questioning, is there something new and exciting to play to give me that buzz any more? Take the new GDub Necromunda. Its brand new, its shiny. its had a real proper makeover. GDub are really excelling themselves in being up with the new kids on the block in terms of game mechanics and more importantly they are understanding the hook to get gamers frothing again about their games. Their release schedules and choices all just go to make players excited and want to buy and play more. I look at Necromunda myself¬† and I’m not feeling it. It may change ofc when the Delaques come out (my favourite gang) but I honestly don’t think so. The same has happened with Shadespire – looks interesting but no thanks.

Looking ahead at 2018 I see continued 40k and Ad Mech, continued Bolt Action and my excursion and dabbling in to LoTR with my Isengard force. I’m hoping that I can play some Relic Knights and am even going to hopefully dabble back in to Wrath of Kinds and Kings of War too. I think I am looking forward to Saga V2 and hopefully DW V? from Warcradle, but at this moment in time I have enough to keep me happy and ticking over.

The first rule of #hobbystreak is …

So a while back Matt and I tried out the Fools Daily Weekly Hobby Pledge (#FDWHP) where we would set ourselves a few hobby goals for the week and then report back how we did with them.  As with all these things it started out swimmingly but after a few weeks we found that it was having the opposite effect on our hobby as it was constraining us to doing a particular thing.

Now for normal folks this wouldn’t be a problem but being the flighty gamers that we are having this sort of restriction on what we could do meant that we ended up not doing anything and thus just went and played on the xbox instead. ¬†This is not good for getting projects done. ¬†However what the last few months have shown is that without some sort of structure / goal / boasting outlet what we end up with is nothing getting done at all as all sorts of procrastination takes place – its why we haven’t done any audio for a while.

Which brings us to #hobbystreak. ¬† Thought up by much cleverer minds that ours – thought I’m not sure who first came up with the idea – this is basically the FDWHP boiled down to a day by day way of recording hobby progress. ¬† The rules are as follows:


Simple right?  As I write this I am up to a 3 day streak and hopefully will be able to push it on for at least a few more days.

So why not join in and see how far you can get your streak.


And now, the end is near

As I write this it is early Saturday morning and I’m about to run the UK Malifaux Nationals for the very last time. ¬†I have very mixed feelings about this weekend and what better to do with that than write a stream of consciousness post and share it with you all.

If you follow me on social media etc. Its no secret that I am not as invested in Malifaux as I have been in the past. ¬†I still really like the game but I’m not a huge fan of the current Gaining Grounds (tournament rules) or the current event meta of heavy summoner crews ending up with a massive activation advantage which means that I don’t go to events which means I don’t want to run events – whole circle of life thing.

In 2012 I went to my very first Malifaux event (run by the always awesome Jo) and had an absolute blast.  I had never played the game before that event but the group of folks that I met were all absolutely awesome and I was hooked.  I started a pretty popular podcast, I went to every event that I could and on the back of those events I amassed a pretty large collection of wooden spoons.  It was great.  So great in fact that I thought I would run my own event (Malifools Midsummer Malifaux Madness) which was something that I thought I would never do again after being heavily involved in the Warhammer scene with the WPS back in the day.

The event went well and then things just seemed to spiral out of control and as is my want, I started to run more and more events as well as go to more and more events.  I picked up the reins of running the rankings when the previous host unceremoniously dumped them and then somehow ended up being a Wyrd Henchman, responsible for promoting the game. Madness.

In 2014 I ran my first Nationals (still called the UKGT then) at York and we got 60 odd people to come along, then next year we filled the York venue to bursting with 80 odd. ¬†It was amazing to see so many people playing the game that i loved at an event I had set up (I won’t lie, its a great ego boost running tournaments) and I set my sights on breaking the 100 player number in 2016.

All the while I was doing events (was up to running 8-10 a year) I was playing as well, travelling all around the country/world to play and with the advent of 2nd edition I had somehow got good at the game.  I won things other than wooden spoons and tbh I think that is where the rot in my mind started to set in.

I started to want to win prizes and my position in the rankings became important to me and that isn’t healthy as it means that on the tabletop I turn into even more of an arsehole than I usually am. ¬†So rather than turn into ‘that guy’ I made a conscious decision to play less and give up some of the things that went with that. ¬†Rankings was the first thing to go and frankly Kai and his group have done a better job than I ever could with it – Bag O Tools is an excellent resource to all Malifaux organisers – but I wanted to stay with the Nationals until I broke that 100 player barrier.

2016 was supposed to be my swan song.   I had sold 128 tickets, every player was getting a ton of swag, folks from all over Europe were making the pilgrimage to come and play and best of all (for my ego certainly) Aaron, Lead Designer of Malifaux, was coming over to hang out with us for the weekend.  Perfect.

And that was the problem.

It was perfect. ¬†From start to finish the event couldn’t have gone better and it would have been the perfect note to go out on, but buoyed by the atmosphere in the hall and the awesome reaction of the players I decided I would do another year.

Which brings us to today.

With the reduced intellectual investment I have in the game comes a certain apathy to running things.  But I had sold 128 tickets (in 10 minutes, crazy) which meant that I had to run the event this weekend,however much I moaned to myself about why I was doing it.  So here we are, ready or not, another 100+ event with participants from all over Europe  My aim is to make it the best damn 2 days of Malifaux I can and then i can go into the sunset knowing that I helped in a little way to get the game to where it is today.

I’d like to thank everyone who I have met over the last 5 years, opponents, fellow TOs and folks who have given up there time to come to something that I have run. ¬†Its been a blast and I have enjoyed nearly every minute of it.

Should have stopped after last year though ūüôā