Sunday, October 16, 2011

Dreadfleet unboxing.

So Dreadfleet arrived and I got to experience the fun and excitement of opening a new boxed game again. I've not managed any assembly yet but I had a great rummage through all the plastic bits checking out the details and also have read the rulebook.

Everything that comes in the box spread out on the bed. Mmm new game :-)

So here is the game spread out and making a mess on the bed in our apartment (NB: Tolerant girlfriend helps here). There is a lot of stuff in the box and the actual box is both deeper than and made of sturdier cardboard than I recall the AOBR box being.

The ship sprues

The ships are impressively detailed. If you haven't already had a look at the sprue pictures on GW's website, then go and browse through them. It's been said around the blogosphere and forums that Dreadfleet really showcases the quality of GW's injection moulding technology and I tend to agree with that. Whatever you think of the aesthetics of the Dreadfleet models, you can deny that they have produced some very detailed pieces that fit together extremely well. My favourite parts are the top decks where they have tiny little cannons that fit to the gunwales very well. The Skaven cannons even have power cables since they are warp lightning cannons and that is some very small detail.

Rulebook, card decks, dice and the top of the big terrain sprue.

The rulebook and cards are both nicely printed. The colour layout and many diagrams of the book are to be expected from GW offerings, along with a generous helping of John Blanche's artwork and pictures of the models and terrain in the GW studio. The cards are quite thin but seem good quality so far. We'll see how well they stand up to play. I like that there are a bundle of plastic zipper bags inside the box so you can put all of your loose cards in together and make sure things don't get lost. I recommend getting a few small elastic bands to keep the different decks (Fate, damage, status, auxiliary etc.) together.

The gaming mat spread out on a normal single bed.

So the game mat. This is a very nice thing to have and I look forward to seeing how the ships look on it once I get them assembled and some layers of paint added. The material is a thin, feels silky and folds away nicely. I think it is about 5'x3' but here you can see it spread out over a regular single bed. You won't be short of playing space for your ships this game, that's for sure.

My girlfriend modelling the mat as a sarong (while remaining anonymous lol).
While she declined to show her face to my blog readers, my girlfriend did comment on how nice the mat was and her intentions to use it as a summer sarong if I get bored with Dreadfleet and don't want to play any more.

Well that's all for now folks. Sadly I left my clippers in the UK with some other modelling gear so I'll have to pick up a new set (plus some spray primer) before I get started on assembly. Some of the pieces are very fine and you want to be careful when removing them from the sprues.

More thoughts on the rulebook and other stuff soon.

All the best


PS: My girlfriend has started asking about her playing the game with me and is interested in painting one or more of the ships. Methinks I have a winner here ;-)

Monday, October 3, 2011

I bought Dreadfleet. Yarrr me hearties.

Taking to the High Seas

Well despite being on the bandwagon and not being happy about GW using resources to produce the non-expandable and non-standard scale naval game that is Dreadfleet, I ended up buying it.

Quite the dichotomy it would seem. I'll admit that it took me some time to be swayed over to actually purchasing Dreadfleet and there were a number of factors that got me interested. Here's a short list.

- The game looks fun.
- I have limited free time to play now that I'm teaching full time and at funny hours. This game is self contained and so easier to organise.
- I've come to like some of the models and the included terrain is really neat.
- I want variety from painting Deathwing models and these ships are all quirky and different.
- I love the gaming mat
- In a way I quite like a game that doesn't tempt me into buying more models.

The Skaven Ship monster is very cool.

I like the styling of the flagships.

I like the islands with extra scenery bits on top. The skull ones are OK but this one and the fortress one I'm in much in favour of.

Now I'm not going to argue in favour of this release as a long term naval wargame compared to Spartan Games. They are different things and satisfy different markets. I might even pick up some SG fleets and use this battlemat to make a good-looking playing surface.

I was also considering picking up the Warmachine two player starter set (for about the same money) when this was all released and that did have me tempted. In a twist of fate, the very fact that the game is expandable put me off the WM set. I just don't have the time or money to invest in it to the level I want to right now and I'd rather get a good fun game to enjoy than be constantly wishing I could field the force I'd like to in a WM game.

From a painting point of view, I'm also keen to try something new compared to 28mm level figures. The thought of painting up armies in consistent colour schemes isn't that appealing to me at the moment since I'm stuck into the Deathwing right now. I want to have fun painting these ships in radically different colours and styles.

Anyway, those are my thoughts. I'll be sure to post up pictures when the set arrives and give you all a good look at the game, plus thoughts on how it plays out.

All the best


PS: I'm not stopping general wargaming by any means, just reorganising priorities based on the time I have to put towards them.

PPS: Next on the blog list is a big series on the utility, or lack thereof, of the different battleforce sets for 40k gaming.