Friday, 31 January 2014

In the Market for a New Game

One of the problems I face at the moment, besides relative joblessness, is the fact that I can't game. Not that I have ever been a prolific gamer, but with so much free time on my hands it seems a waste to not be able to indulge. The issue is that, even if I wanted to, I can't. I have with me a Dreadball team and some 40k Dark Angels, but I am not in a position to play as I am not overly familiar with Dreadball, and don't have all the books and such with me. I will need to make contact with a Dreadball player first, and then rely on their stuff to get up and running, only providing my own team. As regards 40k, I have nothing of note painted, and the scale is so small now that only Killteam is viable. I love Killteam, I remember the rules for it in White Dwarf many years ago, it is a great game to play with good friends, perhaps as part of a larger narrative. It does not, however, play well for a pick up game. Also, given that I haven't play a game of 40k since the 3rd edition rules, it probably isn't wise to start with Killteam.

Therefore I am in somewhat of a quandary. I need to find the local game that has a following, and it needs to be small in terms of models. I spoke to Gavin at Irresistible Force, and his group are big Warmachine/Hordes players. I always liked the look of the Jacks, but I got the idea, and I don't know where, that I wouldn't like the game. The other contender is Malifaux. Slightly more out of the way for me, but the game sounds brilliant. I am an avid listener to the Malifools podcast, and the general chat about the game and the sense of community, even on the competitive side, seems to me to be a winner. The problem is that I have never played. The good news is that the models are beautiful, and many will, I suspect, fit well into a 40k setting or Mordheim setting. So I am very tempted.

I suppose the fact that for either game I can pick up a crew for around 50$AUD and get playing is a good thing. Warmachine is also highly developed on the iPad, with the rules and other aids being available, helping me as weightless rulebooks are a must for me. I think the next step in this journey will be to arrange a demo game. I need to play these games and see the models in the flesh before I decide what to commit to, but at the moment I tend towards Malifaux.

Regular readers might scoff, "do you really need another game?" Well, the answer is simply that I don't view my miniature collection as something that is mutually exclusive. I can see myself using Warjacks in 40k skirmish games, or Malifaux characters on the streets of Mordheim, and why not? So in real terms, my only investment into a game system is into rules and that can come later.

Any thoughts on the matter will be highly appreciated.

PS. Infinity?

This Week in the Hobby 01/02/2014

So another week is over. What did I achieve? Well, my initial list of goals is below:

- Get painting supplies, Dark Angels palette mainly.
- Sort out a decent lamp with white light.
- Arrange a painting spot, probably on the floor initially, using the TV table. 
- Make contact with local gaming personalities. 
- Start reading the 40k Rulebook.
- Get a Dark Angels Codex.

As you can see, mostly successful. The codex was a breeze, I simply got it on the iBook store due to wanting to travel light. The 40k rulebook will be done in the same manner, although I haven't purchased it yet, although upon closer inspection it appears to be the mini rulebook, which is a little disappointing. Anywho, with the Dark Angels Codex I was able to pointify my Dark Vengeance holdings for Hobby Progress Challenge, and I also got the paints I need to get them done. So far I am almost two down. Here they are: 

The one on the right is done except for his basing and metal highlights.
I haven't made too much progress making contact with other players, but there have been tentative rumblings over on the Independent Characters Forum. I also asked at Irresistible Force and it seems to be a hotbed for Warmachine, which I don't play. Still, it is early days and I don't have anything to play with, so I am not in too much of a hurry. The good news is that Brisbane has a vibrant gaming scene, so I shouldn't have too much trouble once I have better idea of what I want to play. 

The final thing is painting space... I haven't got a lamp, but sunlight is abundant here, so I it isn't 100% necessary. A dedicated hobby space is problematic though, and to that end I am looking for a tray/box type solution so that I can pack and unpack swiftly when hobby time kicks in. That said I still got some work done. Not bad. 

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Gaming on a Budget

I find myself in somewhat of a bind at the moment. Usually, I can do whatever I please hobbywise. I rather fancy basing these figures, trundle off to the massive bag of sharp sand, microwave it. Giant bottle of PVA and applicator brush, we are ready to roll. Sadly, I can't do that now. I don't have sharp sand, I don't have PVA, or even a brush to apply it with. And in a further twist of fate, I don't have a little place to work on my little toy people. How very sad.

I think we often take for granted the kind of hobby infrastructure we build up around us over the years of painting and modelling. In the UK I have an extensive collection of paints, basing materials, and figures. There are few things I can't do with a quick rummage. Things are very different over here. I thought to get on with my first Hobby Progress Challenge Unit over the Australia Day weekend. Upon closer inspection of my figures though, it turns out that not only did I not remove all the necessary mould lines (naughty me), I only based some of them with sand before leaving. The problems are twofold; firstly, I don't have a hobby knife, and I somehow don't think my trusty penknife is up to the job. Secondly, I have no basing materials. One might ask, "why don't you simply paint the figure and base them later?" No. Once I lock down down the basing for an army, I always base first, not the edge or the static grass, but the sand and painting it. Since as it involves drybrushing, it can be quite messy, and the last thing you want to do is to spend hours lovingly working on a figure only to mess it up with errant strokes. This is a personal workflow thing, but I just work better this way.

Now, both of the above problems are fixed by a simply visit to Irresistible Force in Tana Merah, however, it also requires treasure, of which I am a little light at the moment. Our hobby isn't cheap by any measure and I think that until you find yourself without that cushy £25k+ per annum job it is difficult to appreciate just how expensive it can be. I think that not since I was an impoverished student have I felt the weight of the prices we pay. And this doesn't simply extend to Games Workshop, the hobby is expensive across the board. I wonder how teenagers afford even one boxed set? Never mind the paints and the other ancillaries that are required to actually do anything with it. Woe are we. Nevertheless, to remedy the situation I set about compiling a list of things I need, perhaps I should have had this list before I went make my first purchase:

- Hobby Knife
- Basing sand/gravel
- Static grass
- PVA glue
- Some more paints and washes
- Pin vice

Some things in the above list were more important than others, the Pin Vice was a luxury, but one I really wanted. The trick was now to try and source these items for as cheap as possible without compromising on quality. So, on Wednesday I set off with my cousin who was simply curious about the hobby to Irresistible Force. Firstly, I had been there the week before Australia Day and still there hadn't been a replenishment of stock. So I had to get a little creative with the paints and inks I wanted, hopefully it will all work out in the end. I also couldn't resist, I saw this and had to buy it.

The figures are gorgeous, and my cousin, who spent an hour in the store with me ooo'd and ah'd, she might just play a game of Dreadfleet with me. So that was an impulse buy, naughty me. Other than that, the only thing I really still need to progress on with my Dark Angels is some PVA glue which I can get at any craft store cheaply, but I just haven't gotten around to doing that as I have been busy job hunting etc. I did manage to finish a Tactical Marine in the space of an hour, barring the basing of course, so progress is being made. What I now need is a little box like paint station that I can store away and bring out as and when I want to paint, so as not to offend me housemates and H who I am sure don't want any of the living spaces littered with Space Marines. But that is a  topic for another post.

So for now I work away at my Tactical Squad, and read. I finished Battle for the Abyss the other night at around 2am as I couldn't sleep. And I am onto Mechanicum...

Friday, 24 January 2014

Hobby Progress Challenge 2014

The intrepid writer assembles "quality" Swedish furniture.
Today H and I braved driving tropical rains to go to IKEA. It was my first time, and I hope the last time. We returned with some house things, which I duly set about assembling for Lady Tottington whilst she commented upon my labours. How very manly of me.

In between being put to work as an indentured servant, swabbing floors, assembling furniture and generally grafting, I managed to make it to Irresistible Force in Tana Merah today and pick up some paints and brushes. What an experience. The store is small, but oh so lovely. The owner is a nice chap who I didn't have a chance to introduce myself to properly as I was in a rush. He likes cricket and wargames, so there isn't much to dislike. This will be my first local gaming store and I am chuffed. Once I am a little more settled I'll set about trying to sound out the local gaming scene.

10 paints and three brushes, $80AUD, ouch!
I decided also, to join the Independent Characters "Hobby Progress Challenge 2014". As a long time fan and seeing the virtue of the HPC I think it will be good for me. So I duly threw my hat into the ring on the IC Podcast forums, you can see my thread here. The immediate upshot has been that I have made contact with a local, Bowlzee. Perhaps one day our completed forces can do battle in Sunny Queensland.

I think I will be running the HPC blogposts in parallel to the forum thread so as to document it here, perhaps in more detail. We shall see. Below is my initial list for the 1000 point Zone Mortalis list, for which I have chosen the Attacker Force Organisation chart.

Company Master Balthasar - Power Weapon. - 105

Librarian Turmiel - Lvl 2 Upgrade. - 100

Tactical Squad (10) including a Vet. Sergeant (plasma pistol, melta bombs), Plasma Gun, Plasma Cannon. - 200

Deathwing Terminators (8) including a Sergeant, Assault Cannon, 1 Chain Fist. - 377

Ravenwing Attack Squadron (3) including a Vet Sergeant (melta bombs), Plasma Gun. - 110

The total at the moment is 892 points, which I will jockey up once I have a better handle on where the project will go. Until then citizens...

+ The Emperor Protects +

Monday, 20 January 2014

This Week in the Hobby

Each Truancy - Joy to the Enemy; Hero Labour - Attack on the Bourgeois. 
Those of you who follow my good friend Jim over at Whispers of Chaos will know that he recently started doing a weekly blog post series entitled The Week in Hobby <insert date here>. You can have a look here. One reason for this sort of scheduled posting is to generate content which is the lifeblood of any blog, but more importantly, to develop the blogger as a writer through repetition and practice. I am guilty of lapsing into "occasional blog syndrome" so I salute my colleague Jim and wish him all the best. In the shadow of his efforts I am going to try the same thing here at Zen and the Art of Miniature Painting. This Week in the Hobby (notice the slight paraphrase) will be an attempt to document my progress and generally develop some musings on the hobby as they happen.

I have now been here in Queensland, Australia for almost a week. I have some work lined up working at a local tavern, and have managed to get most of the admin side of life sorted, bank account, tax number, mobile phone. So far the major impediment to everything has been the intense heat, which as the gentle reader could well imagine, came as a bit of a shock upon leaving a rainy and cold Britain. Nevertheless H and I are adapting well to sitting in the shade by the pool side drinking industrial quantities of water.

I have had a cursory look around the local area for a gaming store, and it seems that I have been lucky enough to be just down the Pacific Highway from Irresistible Force in Tana Merah ( I am hoping to pop down, pick up some brushes and paints and make myself known during this week. From their website it seems that this establishment features a dedicated gaming lounge, and that just seems so awesome, very Firestorm-esque. As my previous post explained, I haven't brought much over with me, but those Dark Vengeance Dark Angels are amazing, and I can't wait to start painting them. In fact, I am rather tempted to join the Independent Characters Hobby Progress Challenge which sets the aim of painting 1000 points in six months, followed by another 1000 points. Until I get hold of a Codex: Dark Angels though, I am not committing. One of my major concerns is the heat, especially how it might affect things like resin and paint dry times. I don't like it when paints dry too quickly. On the upside, H and I have a spacious room featuring air conditioning, so being able to control the temperature will certainly help. I will however need to pick up a decent lamp for painting by. 

So, the mission for this week is:
- Get painting supplies, Dark Angels palette mainly.
- Sort out a decent lamp with white light.
- Arrange a painting spot, probably on the floor initially, using the TV table. 
- Make contact with local gaming personalities. 
- Start reading the 40k Rulebook.
- Get a Dark Angels Codex.

Quite a long list, but all small jobs really. I am going to get the Rulebook and Codex in digital format on my iPad as I don't have the means to store books really. Another secondary task I have set myself is to do book reviews of Horus Heresy novels. I really want to write reviews for Fulgrim and Descent of Angels as I feel I have something to say.

Let's hope that I can establish some sort of routine amidst the sun and games.

+ Carry on citizens +

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Plans for 2014, Australia

So I am currently on an aeroplane over Iraq, wending my way at several thousand feet towards Dubai. After a short stop H and I will head off across the Indian Ocean to Brisbane, Australia and our new life. Packing was hard. Ten years of living in the UK has meant a natural accrual of goods, the detritus of life, being a magpie gamer my quantity of "stuff" is next-level. So a hard decision lay ahead, I had one suitcase, and only 30kg to pack my life into, and of course some of my allowance was shanghaied by Lady Tottington for her various items for beautifaction. In the end I came away with two small, flat boxes of around 20cm by 15cm. Inside these little boxes is a precious cargo...

The pictures above are the lot. I chose to take the Dark Angels portion of the Dark Vengeance boxed set, with a snazzy limited edition Chaplain and four terminators from the Assault on Black Reach boxed set. I have made a start on painting some of them already, the figures are really pleasing and there is the making of something greater amongst the elements I already have. In addition I also packed my Forgeworld things for the Dark Pact. There are two unfinished Mk. III Tactical Marines, and the parts for another three. Amongst the bits are two more Mk. V Marines, and my resin bits, the command upgrade, Iron Hands bionics, Deathwatch Kill Team upgrade kit, and the Mk. IV character upgrade set.

I also thought I would take something totally wild, so I packed my Corporation Dreadball team which remains unpainted. The central idea being that living nomadically leads towards skirmish games/board games. I did toy with the idea of bringing a Deadzone faction, but frankly assembling the figures nearly gave me an aneurysm, so I thought better of it. Instead, I might look into starting Malifaux. I've been listening to the Malifools podcast for months, ostensibly for the bants. Mike Marshall et al are always entertaining, sometimes insightful and always a delight. I especially enjoyed the Malinoobs segment and their guest stars over the last few months. Anyway, I suppose that ultimately it boils down to what community exists in the area we are in, but certainly the proliferation of plastic boxed sets makes Malifaux a good choice being both small and lightweight. Furthermore, with the higher cost of gaming in Australia something with a lower model buy in (a boxed set is enough to get started) is very much appealing. 

So these are my thoughts as we begin our descent into Dubai. It is 0800 local time, the sun is already baking the land below us, and we have another day's flying ahead of us. I'll be listening to more Malifools, some Independent Characters and generally be mulling over what 2014 could hold in store for me on the tabletop front.

Carry on Citizens. 

Friday, 10 January 2014

Painted Figure Showcase for December/January

As I draw dangerously near to my departure date for Australia, I have been hastily trying to get a bunch of near finished stuff on my desk completed. Below is, for your delectation, gentle readers, some eye candy of what I have been up to.

First up, we have Dark Pact 30k Ultramarines. There are two more on my desk to make the first squad up to ten. The lighting outside made these guys look slightly lighter than they really are, still I think you get a sense of the figures. These Mk V power armoured marines actually look pretty good all painted up.

Left to right: Aurelian, Mox Viridis and Cain the Younger.

I also finished my Imperial Officer of the Fleet. Lord Admiral Marcus Erasmus, Hammer of the Eastern Fringe, declared "Soter" (Saviour) by the High Oligarch of Venda, approved by the Cardinals Major and the Volksraad of the same system. I will write more about him in a separate post. My previously published Armsmen are his bodyguard for planetside occasions.

I have also finished a few Orks. The colour scheme is all intimately linked to my Imperial Guard who hail from Venda Prime. I tried doing hazard stripes, and I think with practice I will get the technique down. They aren't a high priority asset for painting, but Imperials always need an opponent. 

 Finally, I have been busy working on the Dark Angels from the Dark Vengeance boxed. These figures painted up a treat and I was very happy with my Deathwing armour. The lighting in these shots doesn't really show the figures as they really look, as I said the colours seem a bit washed out in the photographs. I have done the Tactical Marines with 5th Company Markings.

So, my goal for the end of the weekend is to finish a battalion of French Legere in 28mm and to base my painted Fire & Fury Confederates (15mm). And on Sunday, I shall have to decide what gets to come with me to Australia.

+ The Emperor Protects +

A Brief Sojourn to Cardiff to Visit Friends, and a Game!

I departed from Oxfordshire on my long and dangerous journey through the torrential rain towards Wales on Monday, wondering if I would ever make it. The gusting winds and lashing, heavy rain pounded my little Mercedes as I headed towards a part of the British Isles my phone's satnav would only describe as "Here Be Dragons". After being extorted by a harridan to pay a toll to cross a rather large bridge (possibly over the Styx, though equally likely the Severn) I was in Cymru, where I have not set foot for many a year.

A large bridge into Wales.

The ostensible reason for my visit was for a get-together with some fine, and long-suffering friends, fellows of the Dark Pact. Sadly the Dark Pact has ground to a halt, they blame me, though I suspect the real reason is the short attention span of grown men when tempted by shiny new toys. As Chris Rock once observed, "a man is only as loyal as his options." Upon my arrival at Chez Jim et Craig, I was met by Jim, writer of the Whispers of Chaos Blog, who I whisked away for a romantic late lunch of Nando's, before we set off to Firestorm Games for a game of Battlefleet Gothic. Firestorm is what a Wargames store should be, they stock almost everything, and would even order in Wargames Factory if you want it! What's more, they have a large gaming area at the rear of the store where one might make battle. Living in the UK with its tiny little houses means that clubs or locations like Firestorm are absolutely essential as venues for friends to meet and enjoy their favourite games.

We basically had the whole place to ourselves, Monday afternoon at 1600 is hardly a peak time, Besides us, there were a few guys playing fantasy on the other side of the hall. As neither of us had played in years, and I hadn't had a chance to really read the rules over the weekend (H wouldn't let me) Jim was guiding us through the Cruiser Clash scenario. For those who have never played Battlefield Gothic before, get the rules for free from here, and then get hold of some ships from here, and play. Though I had brought all my stuff, we only elected to play with two cruisers apiece, I chose a Gothic Class Cruiser and a Dominator class. Jim chose some vile Chaos ships. The key difference was that he move faster and shoot further, I had better prow armour and at close range should have outgunned him.

Our chosen ships, setting up the game.
Sorry guys, you don't get to play.
 I had more in boxes too, including orbital things, but we let those lie. If I had been allowed to field everything I had I would have crushed Jim. However, because it was a fair fight I never had a chance. We rolled off and I got the first turn after we deployed. The Imperial Fleet deploying prow forward to the Chaos fleet, the Choas fleet abeam. We randomly generated our leadership values, and true to form I got a Ld 7 for the Gothic and 6 for the Dominator, Jim did a little better with a 9 and a 7.

Turn I - The Imperial fleet moved forward tentatively, and began to perform a wide angled right turn, since the maximum turning distance was 45 degrees for my ships.The Imperial plan was to swing right and then turn into the Chaos fleet, in hindsight Admiral *Data Expunged* should have rushed the Chaos ships to engage them at close quarters. Ineffective Nova Cannon fire, and a spread of torpedoes from the Gothic headed towards the Chaos fleet. The Chaos fleet drifted forward, and began to turn into the Imperial fleet, before launching a flight of three Bombers and a squadron of fighters. The fighters swiftly intercepted the torpedoes destroying the threat before returning to their carrier for refuelling, whilst the bombers lumbered toward the Gothic, from where Admiral *Data Expunged* commanded the small battle group.

Turn II - The Imperial fleet lumbered forward, trying to bring its guns to bear on the Chaos ships but failed dismally. In the Imperial Ordnance phase the Chaos bombers flew through a hail of defence turret fire to deliver their lethal payloads, delivering a critical hit on the Gothic class cruiser, smashing the bridge and killing Admiral *Data Expunged* along with his cowardly coterie of advisors and toadies. [Note: What I should have done was brace for impact, you can see I am rusty.] The ship was now crippled as it only had half of its Hit Points, reducing its guns and shields to half for the remainder of the action. Normally damage can be repaired, but not a smashed bridge. Also, the Gothic now had a leadership of 4.

The Gothic in the lead getting totally smashed.

The Chaos fleet tried reloading its ordnance, and a double 6 meant that it not only failed, but that it couldn't reload ordnance for the rest of the game. The bomber pilots were too busy celebrating their success with feasting no doubt. The Chaos guns were ineffective.

Turn III - The Imperial fleet, now leaderless, powered forward, trying to close with the Chaos ships. The short range of their guns a real impediment to getting to grips with the enemy contacts. However bad luck meant that the Imperial fleet only took out a shield. The Chaos admiral then tried to Lock On, but failed, this was followed by some more ineffectual fire.

Turn IV - The Imperial 2IC tried to take control of the situation, attempting to reload the torpedo tubes on the Gothic, but with Leadership 4, chances were slim, and the attempt failed. The Dominator managed to rake a Chaos ship with weapons battery fire take down its shields, but failing to inflict any real damage. The Chaos admiral brought both his ships about preparing to finish his annihilation of the Imperial cruisers. 

End Game - The Imperial fleet flailed wildly about seeking to inflict some damage on the Chaos cruisers. But on turn 6 it was all over, the crippled Gothic taking yet more damage, and with another critical hit, its Plasma Drive overloaded erupting in a ball of plasma vapour.

Ouch! Plasma drive overload.
The remains of the Gothic.
Fire poured into the Dominator removed three hit points.
The Dominator got pounded by fire, suffering a critical hit which resulted in a bulkhead collapse and a crippled ship. The Dominator tried escaping, but true to form the leadership test came up double six. However, the Chaos Admiral decided to let the Corpse-Emperor's lapdogs limp home and spread word of his victory. "Death to the False Emperor!!!"

Post Game - I made some huge mistakes in this game. I should have advanced more directly, prow forward without deviating to bring the Imperial guns to bear. Trying to manoeuvre was an abject failure which Jim capitalised on. Although I got smashed, I thoroughly enjoyed my last game in the UK for a while. We headed back to Jim and Craig's for a game of Relic. You can get the game here, and I highly recommend it. We played late into the night, sipping on Whisky, a great end to a busy and enjoyable day.

Friday, 3 January 2014

2013 Roundup and some exciting news

One of my all time heroes.
H and I returned from a weekend away in  Edinburgh, her Christmas present to me, a few days before the ticking over of 2013 to 2014. Sadly we were both in the throes of colds and the freezing weather only compounded these. When we did manage to venture out into the monumental treat that is Edinburgh we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. A particular treat for me was a Whisky tour and tasting on the Saturday evening. 

Enjoying a drink amongst the world's largest collection of single malt Scotch whiskey.
We returned with a handful of memories (mostly of made-for-TV films viewed from a hotel bed) and the remnants our colds. Nevertheless, I would heartily recommend Edinburgh to one and all. From a wargaming perspective, spending a day and a half in our hotel room gave me an opportunity to almost finish "Legion" from the Horus Heresy series of novels, as well as catch up on the "back issues" of the newly discovered "Joy and Forgetfulness" blog by Mr. Conrad Kinch. His conversational style has a whimsy reminiscent of P.G. Wodehouse and makes for excellent reading. So being bedridden actually had an upside.

+ Herewith follows the obligatory year end round-up +

So, another year has passed, and as is the case every year, I simply did not get enough done. One the upside this year has marked my return to the hobby proper and that in itself is a small miracle, but I can't help but feel that more could have been accomplished if I hadn't been quite so all-over-the-place. Belgium, Australia, Denmark and my Reserve commitments have meant that I haven't been home enough to get much done. I am not going to enumerated my various projects, and what I completed, there simply isn't enough to talk about and it never does well to dwell on one's failures.

Suffice to say, I have had a ball, and as ever my desk is resplendent in its near permanent array of partially painted figures, alongside those which are done but need basing, and those soon to be varnished. The therapy offered to me by these tiny legions is the breakwater of my sanity after what can often be long and stressful days. 

I thought I might include some awful pictures of what is currently "on the desk", here you go...

Dark Vengeance Dark Angels, all they need now is flocking and a bit of paint around the base edge.

My test figure for Word Bearer chosen Chaos Space Marines. Again, Dark Vengeance. A great figure, not quite done.

French Legere, ready for matt varnishing after a dip.

Another angle on the Legere.

Do I have any resolutions for the coming year? No. The reason? I am about to embark upon a great adventure, to Australia. H and I visited in September, and we liked it so much we decided that we would like to live there just a little longer. Given that I am approaching the age at which I will no longer qualify for the work-holiday visa, H and I thought that there was no time like the present. I quit my job, and am preparing to escape to warmer climes on January the 13th for a year or maybe two. Are we nervous? Naturally. The gamble of setting off into the unknown is never an easy commitment, but equally I look forward to embarking on something charged with potential. 

How will the blog continue? Well, I think that this might be an interesting opportunity to chart my experience in the differences between the Australian and UK wargaming scenes. The higher cost of wargaming in the Antipodes will also be a factor, given that I shall be paupering for a while. To that end I think that the most sensible route would be take some unpainted things with me, nestled in the depths of my suitcase.

However, with the weather being glorious, I suspect I might find precious little time to sit down and paint. We shall have to see how my hobby deals with such a change in circumstances. Of course, miniatures and painting aren't the only aspect to the hobby. There are also books and various board games too, but for now, standby. 

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to wish readers a happy and prosperous New Year and thank you for reading.