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The JavBlog

 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 6:31 pm 
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When last we left our intrepid hero...

Well, it's going on 15 months now since I started diving back into the world of Epic. ?I'm really glad I found EpiComms, as you folks have been a great source on inspiration. ?Before I begin on my progress in my Epic quest, allow me to introduce myself.

I'm 33 years old and live in Washington State. ?I have a master's degree from Cornell University. ?I spent six years in the US Army prior to college. ?I have two beautiful little boys and wife who is at least gracious about my habit of playing with little toy soldiers. ?

I started playing RPG's in 1980 at the side of my 10-years-my-senior sister. ?My first minis games were Starfleet Battles and micro-armor games at the local club. ?In 1988, I discovered 40K, and was thrilled by it, but GW didn't fire up my passion until I discovered two games: ?Space Hulk and Space Marine. ?I'll skip going into my deep and lasting love affair with Space Hulk, as it's a sad and sordid tale.

I bought Space Marine off a friend with some of Scout Camp money. ?For $25, I got the entire first boxed set (with the two Marine forces fighting it out during the Horus Heresy) and a box of the Squat forces. ?Later I picked up the boxed set that had the four different forces (Marine, Eldar, Chaos, and IG, IIRC), Adeptus Titanicus, and assorted blisters. ?It was heaven! ?

My friends and I bounced back and forth between RPG's, Battletech, and SM/AT. ?40K was in there somewhere, but mostly we played SM/AT and Space Hulk. ?Four years of bliss ensued, but high school was coming to an end, and I realized that adulthood was calling.

I joined the Army and left the week after I graduated high school. ?Missouri, Korea, New Jeresy, California, Louisiana, then finally Washington State... there was no time to game, and I had no room for my collections. ?I missed it, but I was An Adult now. ?No time for games. ?Right? ?Bullpucky -- I still wanted to play.

It was while I was home on leave one Christmas that I found out that my entire gaming collection had disappeared. ?My parents had let a friend of mine live at our house for a while as he got his life back in order. ?When he left... so did my collection. ?Space Marine. ?Titanicus. ?Space Hulk (with expansions). ?Fortress America. ?Shogun. ?Conquest of the Empire. ?Axis & Allies. ?Dark Tower. ?Talisman. ?40K. ?All my RPG stuff. ?And a .22 rifle.

Grrrr... ?so I let it go. ?I was An Adult now. ?Didn't need that stuff. ?I was leaving the Army soon to go to college in Seattle, so I put my games out of my mind. ?Minis didn't even occur to me again until about 1999, when I found Epic 40,000: Final Liberation in the $5 bin of DOS games down at CompUSA. ?What's this? I mused. ?A PC game of Space Marine? ?Excellent!

I played the heck out of Final Lib. ?And through that I realized I wanted to play again. ?Sadly, I was on my way to grad school in New York, so minis would have to wait. ?And wait they did, until 2002, when I finally graduated and got a corporate job. ?Time to start looking into minis!

Needless to say, I was appalled by the changes that had happened to GW, 40K, and my beloved Space Marine. ?Epic appeared to be dead, so I focused my attention on Dirtside, Starmada, Combat Zone, etc., as well as participating in RPG?s. ?And yet I still had a soft spot in my heart for my little plastic Beakies and their enemies. ?

And so, in late 2005, I found myself drawn back to Epic. ?I also found a guy selling the entire Epic 40K boxed set (somewhat pre-assembled) for $35, so I scored it and began to revel in rehabbing the minis inside. ?What great timing! ?Since then, I have continued to build my collections of Orks, Marines, and Imperial Guardsmen, and have scored some very good deals. ?Following herein I will begin to outline what 15 months of collecting and around $350 can do for a person bent on becoming an Epic-head.

And let?s start with?

Da Orks

Let?s face it. ?Orks have to be one of the easiest armies to get off the ground with, when it comes to Epic. ?This is due in no small part to the huge numbers of Epic 40K starter boxes that hit the market in the late 90?s, all of which were chock full of Orky goodness. ?On top of that is the fact that Orks are not nearly as sexy as Marines or IG, meaning that those forces will be snapped up first with Orks trailing the way. ?

I had two wonderful windfalls of Orks during the last 15 months. ?The first was my opening foray into modern Epic, which was an almost-complete (if used) Epic 40K boxed set, which had all the Orks and Marines (although none of the ruins, markers, dice, or books). ?With piles of infantry and a decent contingent of basic vehicles (wagonz and bikez, especially), I found myself in possession of a good starting force worth a couple thousand points. ?

Then, around last summer, I was participating in a thread about Epic on the RPGNet forums, when a fellow asked me if I could use some of his old stuff. ?Well, why not? ?I thought. ?So money changed hands, and lo and behold, Orks were borne unto me in a FedEx box that exceeded my expectations. ?The parcel contained a wealth of the little plastic Cads, including six battlefortresses, a dozen OOP metal Mekaniak creations (bubblechukkas, rokkit speedstas, etc.), over a hundred stands of infantry, at least 80 battlewagons, 20 Stompaz, and all sorts of little niche things such as Pulsa Rokkits and Big Gunz.

For the last few months, therefore, I have been furiously painting and basing, and am finally approaching completion with these basic forces. ?I still have some things waiting in the wings, but starting this week I?ll begin posting pics of my Ork forces.

But first, a tally. ?Last night I counted up everything I have painted and based, and came up with this:

Warlord..................5
Nobz.....................29
Boyz.....................66
Shootyboyz..........15
Grotz....................40
Stormboyz............16
Kommandoz.........15
Bikez....................18
Warbuggiez.........29
Boarboyz.............19
Skorchaz...............3
Battlewagonz......42 ?(old-style with the skull on the front)
Gunwagonz.........92 ?(Epic 40K style)
Squiggoths............4
Battlefortresses.....3
Gunfortresses.......4 (one scratchbuilt)
Dreadnoughts.......6
Big Gunz..............37 (including Pulsa Rokkits)
Stompaz..............29
Mega-Gargantz.....3 (one scratchbuilt)
Landaz..................4 (proxies using Mechwarrior minis)


I figure that this would give me somewhere around 14,000 points, and could be arranged roughly into the following:

3x ?Uge Warbands: ?Six Nobz, eighteen Ork Boyz, six Gretchin, one Battlefortress, one Gunfortress, six Battlewagons
8x ?Uge Blitz Brigades: ?Twelve Gunwagons
9x Mekboy Stompamobs: ?Three Stompas
2x ?Uge Kults Of Speed: ?Twenty-four of the following: Buggies, Warbikes, Skorchas
3x ?Uge Mekboy Gunzmobs: ?Fifteen Big Gunz
1x ?Uge Boarboyz Horde: ?Fifteen Boarboyz
3x Stormboyz Hordes: ?One Landa, Six Stormboyz stands, two Dreadnoughts
1x Kommando Horde: ?Fifteen Kommandos, eight Battlewagons
3x Great Gargants

Obviously not the optimal force compositions, but I?m still just playing around with it. ?During the coming week I?ll start posting pictures of the JavWaaagh for your viewing pleasure, after which I'll move on to my Marine chapter. ?Stay tuned!

Thanks!
Jav98

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 7:09 pm 
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Thanks for the autobiography, Javelin. I'm always interested in seeing how people get into gaming in the first place and how real life causes gaming to weave in and out of our lives. Bummer that you lost all of your original minis. As usual, I'm looking forward to seeing your pics.  :cool:

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 8:41 pm 
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There are times when man can't play games, but luckily games comes always back. :)
I'm waiting to see that orkish horde.

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 2:09 am 
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Hi Jav,

I love the blog and ama great fan...

But I imagine you already know that!

Shalom,
Maksim-Smelchak.

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 3:54 am 
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Very interesting, J9er8 ! You were at Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo. for CE training ? I a there breifly in Aug.'78, as a Cadet Asst. Ofc, with a CE Training Company.  A bit before your time !  I'd still be pissed about your "friend" and your collection !  But the fact that you were on leave from a CE unit, says it all.  And yes, pics a must !  A Bio like this does give us a good idea about the man behind the Av !

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 11:32 pm 
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Washington is a big state. I'm wondering where abouts you are in that beautiful place. I live a short hop across the border in Victoria, BC.


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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 6:13 pm 
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@Tchristney -- I live in Spokane, about as far from Victoria as possible and still be in Washington! ?Love that area, though; ?my wife and I spent part of our honeymoon on the island, saw Victoria, Nanaimo, Tofino and the Butchart Gardens (of course). ?One of my favorite spots in Victoria was Miniature World -- great museum!

Sorry I haven't made any updates here; ?my digital camera is having fits, and Real Life? has continued to interfere with my true calling as a gamer. ?In the meantime, here's a pic of me:



Hopefully I can get some use out of my bloody digicam this weekend and post some decent pics. ?Thanks for your patience!

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 9:23 pm 
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Thanks for the intro Jav - I always like reading these personal epic histories :)

Great collection so far!

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 5:26 am 
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Well.  It has been, if you're keeping count, nearly 14 months since I started this blog.  Unfortunately, soon after starting this thing, I found myself battling a crippling depression.  It was bad enough in December that I was sorely tempted to just wrap things up and be done for good.  Luckily, medication and head-shrinking have been helping, enough to the point where I've been able to regain interest in hobbies.

And now... on to the minis!

I almost cringe to post my piccies when I see the sheer mountain of talent on these boards.  Onyx, Krooza, L4, Stephane... man, you guys blow me away.  But, here we go anyway.  Let's start with...

Grab-and-Go Boxes

I was thoroughly discouraged by the mountain of minis I seemed to have acquired, so I began to sort them into point-sized units.  I drew up some box templates and printed them on heavy cardstock, then cut and taped them over several evenings whilst enjoying some episodes of Battlestar Galactica, courtesy of Netflix.

The nice thing about this is, if I want to pull out, say, a 2,000 point force, I just reach in and grab the boxes I need, as I've labeled them with the point values.  For some of the collector's pieces, I've included the stats as well, right inside the box.  

I'm hoping this will make it easier for me to have pick-up games with guys at the local game store.  Since Epic is fairly rare around here, I figure my best chances of playing are to have multiple forces ready.  So, here's some pics of my boxes:

The Orks, having their three-tier system of force organization, have three sizes of boxes, obviously.





Inside some of them I put dividers to reinforce the boxes and make it easier to pull out part of a force if necessary.

I at first wanted to make hinged boxes, but I found as I went along that boxes with separate lids were easier to make and manage.

Blast Markers

In my search for blast markers that were 1) nice looking and 2) affordable (as I'm notoriously chea- er, thrifty), I hit upon the idea of using some of the many Mechwarrior bases that I had lying around after popping the vehicles off of them.  Combine those with the excellent Litko blast markers, and I have markers that can represent from 1 to 12 blast markers each.  I designed and printed my own dials, which I pasted on underneath.  The numbers could stand to be bigger and located higher on the dial, though.  I may print them anew.




12 blast markers... that guy's in real trouble.

They look pretty good on the tabletop, too.  Not as impressive as having a handful of the paper ones strewn about, but better than nothing.





Of course, I'm biased, as I'm the one who suggested making blast markers to Litko a couple years ago, during a discussion on TMP.  My little slice of history.

To be continued...




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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 6:32 am 
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Now on to...

Da Orks!

I have tons of Orkses, thanks to a couple windfall purchases I made.  I probably haven't spent more than $120 on my orks, but I have easily in excess of 12,000 points, including proxies and scratchbuilds.  One guy on RPG.net sold me a huge pile of OOP metals for not much at all.  Thanks, Komradebob!

Gunmobz

Here's the boxes.  Sadly, my crappy 6-year-old digicam didn't render the pics of the actual minis very well, so I'll have to take that again.



Blitz Brigades

The basic boxes:


An example of the treats hidden inside:


And... well, I think I may have a bit too many Gunwagonz.  In addition to this stack, I found another box of four.


As part of that incredible haul from RPG.net, I landed some of those great old Orky vehicles -- Lifta-Droppas, Rokkit Speedstas, Dragstas, Kannon Speedstas, Bubble-Chuckas...  Good stuff.


And I found that this thing goes great on a looted Rhino:


Where would we be without Squiggoths?  Well, right here, actually, but... you know, the dramatic effect...



Battlewagons

For when I want my Boyz to be mechanized.



Stompas

I'd didn't bother making boxes for the Stompa Mobz.  I have 28 Stompas, which would mean a lot of little boxes.

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 6:32 am 
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Gunfortresses and Battlefortresses

Three of each!


And here's my scratchbuilt Battlefortress.  As you can see, it's way too big, but at the time I made it, I didn't own any to compare it with.  The chassis is an A&A Minis Flammenpanzer.


I used printer paper for my checkered stripes.  Works pretty well:



Dreadnoughts

Haven't made a box for them yet, either.



Pulsa Rockets[b]

Yeah, I know these just count as "Big Gunz" now, but I still like them.



[b]Fighta-Bommaz


Being chea-- er, thrifty, I didn't want to spend money on actual GW pieces, so when I found these Crimson Skies fighters at the local game store for $2.00 each, I couldn't resist.  The jet engines are actually wooden beads from Michaels.





Boarboyz

I was glad when the Swordwind rules gave the Boarboyz back their dignity.  Such as it is.


You'll also notice my Stormboyz in that same pic.


Warhordes

Small, medium, or large?


I haven't flocked the bases yet, and I still need to paint up the gazillion stands of Nobz I've got, so they aren't here for morning muster.  Maybe next weekend.

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 6:33 am 
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Kult of Speed

When I first started basing my minis, I didn't have very many, and I wanted to make them stretch.  So, I started basing them with two warbikes to a stand on 20mm x 20mm cardstock pieces.  Later, when I made out like a bandit, I found myself swimming in bikes.  So, as a consequence, I can field three Kults of Speed, one in each size.





Gargants

Da fat boyz is here!  I got these Mega-Gargants for $5 each from a guy on Bartertown.  Not often you see deals that good over there.


Some of you have already met my own scratchbuilt one.  Here he is again!






Okay, that's all I can do tonight.  I'll try to post some more later this weekend.  I leave you with a shot of my Snapware storage containers:


My total force of Orks fills seven of those trays.  Marines fill two, and my IG fills five (one dedicated solely to Warlord Titans).

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 9:01 am 
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Hey javelin98 pleased ta meet yah,

Thanks for the intro. It's always nice to know a bit about someone.  :))

Wow! That is one amazing ork horde. Those conversions look great. The ork flying circus looks great, beads for engines... really, wow. The scratch built Battlefortress - ever think of making it a Praetorian, excellent scope for new rules and such. Your Blast Markers idea is better than the card ones IMO. Nice touch with the storage system of boxes too.  :agree:

Looking forward to more JavBlog.  :cool:

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 9:52 am 
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Quote: (javelin98 @ 02 Aug. 2008, 05:26 )

Unfortunately, soon after starting this thing, I found myself battling a crippling depression.

You know its bad when you can't play games!

Otherwise those are very cute boxes! (May steal idea!)

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 Post subject: The JavBlog
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 3:12 pm 
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Wow !  I Like the Boxes, blast markers, minis ... everything, even if most are "Go Fasta" Red ! :devil:  Nice work ! :D

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