Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Hobby Audit (Goals Failed) Part 2/4

Continuing the 2015 Hobby Audit:

Part 2 of 4, 2015 Goals Failed:
  • Enter 3 painting competitions.  Any type.  HAHAHAHA.  None.  
  • Have an assembled and fully painted Malifaux crew for the Adepticon Team Tournament - despite it helping up my hobby output for 2015 I still considered this a fail as they are not "fully/completely" painted and I downsized my lists based on what I thought I could accomplish (ie, there is still stuff that isn't assembled or painted).
  • Have an assembled and fully painted Blood Bowl team for the NOVA Open Tournaments.  Nope, not even close.  In fact, due to the move, my I still don't even have the intended Blood Bowl team!  It was from a kickstarter and I had to have it delivered to my parents!  
  • Get some/any/all of that Spartan Games stuff painted.  Nope, without the prospect of getting games in this always fell to the bottom of the priority list.
  • Make terrain for 3 different gaming table setups.  Nope but I'm blaming this one mostly on the move and the precognition that I was trying to make the said move.
  • Only buy what you can get to the table.  This goes back to the to much "collecting" aspect.  While I failed at this (Blood Bowl Cheerleaders, Dropzone Commander, some of the kickstarters) I was significantly better than ANY previous year.
  • Buy less miniatures than you paint (normalized*).  LOL.  That is soooo funny.  In 2015 I bought 139 (normalized*) models, including to eventually be delivered kickstarter ones.  And Wow, the Dropfleet Commander Kickstarter and DZC purchases killed me on this one.  While this is better than ANY previous year, it is a far cry from the actual embarrassingly low and omitted number of models painted.

*normalized:  by this I mean I count some things different than others.  Painting a vehicle is not "equal" to painting a 28mm foot solider.  IMO.

Next time, a bit of spending analysis...

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

2015 Hobby Audit (Goals Achieved) Part 1/4

So for a few years now, like many in our hobby, I set some hobby goals for the year.  As we approach the new year, it's time to conduct the audit!  Of course eventually I will post some 2016 goals, but let's see how I did for the past year.

Note, some of my goals get set as "Do X more than last year", while others are more specific.  Also, I tend to only track things by the week so even if I played Malifaux 5 times in one week, that gets recorded as 1 week of having played miniature games (it's not a great method, but I don't want to be a bean counter).

Part 1 of 4, 2015 Goals Achieved:

  • Spend more time painting/assembling than 2014.  For 2014 I tracked only 17 weeks having any painting/assembly done.  Despite the upheaval of relocating from the DC area, I achieved 30 weeks of painting/assembly.  I have to credit trying to get my Mailfaux models ready for the Adepticon team tournament and Mike at Mini Mayhem keeping me engaged upon arriving to the Huntsville area.
  • Play more board and role playing games than 2014.  For 2014 I only had 9 weeks that I played a board game or role playing game (and it was mostly role playing).  This year was only 7 but I think my tracking is significantly off because at my new job we have a Wed board game lunch group, so I'm going to consider this achieved despite the record keeping.
  • Play more miniature games than 2014.  I've had a bad habit of to much "collecting" not enough "playing" as demonstrated by only 7 weeks of 2014 that I played a miniature game.  In 2015 that rose to 11, which only seems like a hallow victory.  Big thanks though to my Adepticon Malifaux partner (Nick)/practice opponents (Owen and Rhett) and Mike for motivating me to get these games in.
  • Read more books than last year.  OMG this was easy and I am ashamed.  Why, because I only read 1 book in 2014 and NONE in 2013.  I managed 8 this year, although many were not very challenging books (short, Star Wars, Star Wars YA, etc)  and 8 is still a pitiful sum.  If interested, you can check my reads out over at goodreads.
  • Spend less time "reading" about the hobby and actually doing the hobby.  Ie, spend less time online reading blogs, searching for tutorials, watching videos, etc and just hobby more.  At the end of the day, because someone else did it X way doesn't mean it will work for you anyway.
  • Less kickstarters.  This may some day get a specific post about my current feelings about kickstarters but this isn't the time.  Enough to say, that I just wanted to reduce the amount I spent on them, esp given my major outlays in 2012 & 2013 which busted my hobby budgets.  Here is my list of shame though if you are interested, backed kickstarters.
  • Stay within budget!  Yep, I did it.  I actually only spent 86% of my 2015 budget.  Much better than previous years.  Further auditing though will occur cause I like to look at the breakdowns/trends/misbehavings.
Next time, the FAILURES!

Thursday, December 24, 2015


So as I previously mentioned, or perhaps you know, I've relocated and had to establish a temporary hobby space for myself.
My new hobby space
Quiet the shell of my former man cave (and a half).  Just a small corner of my apartment bedroom that allows me to work a few small projects, that aren't in storage, while we continue to look for a new house.  I really wish I had set aside my airbrush for the apartment pack, although I have no idea where I would have put it.

Mike, over at Mini Mayhem, has been critical in keeping me engaged in the hobby since I arrived here.  I have known Mike for a few years and when I first arrived he was quick to greet me with a starter set of Hadross models for Wrath of Kings.  You can see those, maybe, assembled in front of the laptop in the photo above.

We have gotten a couple of games in of that since I arrived as well as a "game" of Guild Ball (we played things slightly wrong and actually played for 5-6 games worth of VP for our single "game").  You can see more of these over at his blog but please note, the unpainted ones are my models, not his.  This past weekend I also got in a demo game of Kings of War overseen by the some of the local gamers (KoW and Bolt Action seem to be the primary miniature games around here).

Anyway, I will try to post some thoughts up about Wrath of Kings, Guild Ball, Kings of War and Happy Seppuku base stamps (seen on my cutting mat and used for my WoK figures) in the near future.

A couple of quick notes on the blog layout.  All content, links, etc are still a work in progress.  As I have time, I will begin to back fill in more and more of the intended content along the sides of these posts.  And "windmills" if you are wondering, those are kind of my future secret/special projects/interests and are intended to link to all the content on this blog regarding them.  Of which right now, there is no content relating to them, so they don't work.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Starting Off

I have considered "writing" a blog for sometime now, so why now?  Well, I figured I should at least get something posted before offering the obligatory 2015 retrospective and 2016 resolutions, goals.  So I just avoided what the question really was, what is the motivation for having this blog?

  • I recently (ok, back in June) relocated from Northern Virginia to Huntsville Alabama, so I figure this may be a good way to keep my, now distant, friends up to date about what I am doing.
  • A diary, so to speak, of my activities.  I'm terrible of keeping track of what I have accomplished and how I have accomplished it.  So perhaps making posts to my own blog could help document what I've done.
  • Maybe, just maybe, someone will see something I've done and it will help them, answer a question and/or inspire them (although I am not sure about that last bit).
  • A bit of public accountability.  Like most of us in this hobby, I have an ever increasing number of models.  Models unpainted, unassembled, unused!  So perhaps if I am open on this blog about what I've done (or not done), what I've bought, etc, I may be shamed to stay within my budget, meet my hobby goals and so on.
  • To share what I think about a particular subject (game, model, kickstarter, movie, whatever) such that it may increase it's exposure to more people.  In general, these will be about things that I feel positively about.  If I dislike or hate a particular thing, there really is no reason to waste my time or yours "ranting" about.  But, I will on occasion fail at this.
That being said, there are a few things I will not be doing.
  • Writing very well.  Or spelling well.  Or using proper grammar.  And I will not stop using 2 spaces after punctuation, that is how us older farts were taught.  This is not professional content, it is maybe just a little bit more than my stream of conscience and/or a conversation with myself.   
  • Oh, that's another.  At times, I will probably write this as if I am talking to myself.  Hell, for all I know I am.  But see the previous point, I'm not going to (nor do I have the time) to go back and edit content to produce professional polished posts.
  • I will not be promising to provide content consistently.  For years I've been following an uncountable number of blogs, much bigger blogs and further reaching blogs than I can ever hope for, and every year they make resolutions to post more regularly or X number of times a week/month.  Not here, posts will come when they come.
  • I can not promise to "manage" this blog well.  I don't know what I'm doing here folks!  I'm like my parents 30 years ago trying to program their VCR.  I am sadly befuddled by technology I can't figure out in 5 mins.  
  • Investing a lot of time in making the blog look or work better.  I've settled on what I think may work and until I know otherwise, I won't be investing much more time into it.  I think it's readable and functional.  After all, I'm not a professional web designer or anything.