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The Best of 2015?

What a year it’s been.  So much has been released for so many games that I’m not sure where I stand to be honest.  It’s like creating a list of the best ‘Films’ you’ve seen in the last 10 years – each day (and maybe hour) you think different.  I’m sure you’ll all agree that the best Horror film ever is ‘The Thing‘ (John Carpenter) but let’s move on, this is about 2015 and about games.

Where do I start first?  Let’s make a list.  I’ll look at Tabletop War Gaming, PC Gaming/Xbox Gaming, Board Gaming, Roleplaying and maybe other things about gaming.  So what were the 10 best things about 2015?  These are in no particular order – they just speak to me, and thus are remembered….

Ridend Faction for Relics Wargame

When were they released?  Back in June (end of) the Ridend finally saw the sun.  Based on (in my opinion) Goblins vs Labyrinth Goblins they opened up a whole new faction for the game.  Unlike the previous 4 factions they weren’t listed in that lovely rulebook.  They also became the first figures that Tor Gaming used 3D sculpting for the entire faction.  As I write this there’s a new Ridend Profile coming in January (I believe) – these are the Peasants.

Beyond the Gates of Antares

A sci-fi game written by Sir Rick of Priestly.  Now before I continue I will say I’m not Ricks greatest fan.  For me, he’s not a god – but he his a great game designer and has that ‘touch’.  So when I started to see more about this game during the summer holidays I had to look into it.  At the Derby World show I had a demo game and b00M!  I was hooked.  I loved the idea a simple human soldier (not a 7″ tall marine) could take down the most armoured of foe.  Yes it requires a lot of luck, but it’s possible and that for me works very well.

So I pre-ordered the new two player starter box, Xilos Horizon and awaited it to turn up.  Great value I thought at £70 (I went direct so they got all the money – rather than off a retailer – who would probably discount it) and got the pre-order bonuses, the extra figures and a peice of average scenery.  Still great value and since then haven’t had the chance to play a game!

You can find more about it here, but note it’s NOT a replacement for 40k, it’s more modern and follows pretty much the system used in Bolt Action.  Each unit gets to add a number of action dice and these are pulled out randomly.  I still need to re-read the rulebook (I’ve read it once and skimmed it) but the info is all over the place.  It could be I’m simply too used to technical books where all of the relevant information is normally contained together.

Anyway there will be a blog post about this coming soon, following my progress building my Concord (then maybe painting – new glasses/hands required!).

Horus Heresy

The fluff – wow the fluff.  Hooked I am on the audio books (I tend not to read much unless it’s a blog site/tech book) but I do like to listen.  Now there’s a lot of HH books, tons in fact, they seem to spawn more than I used to playing Unreal Tournament.  However it’s not the books/audiobooks that I think about, it’s about the work Forgeworld do.  Regardless of whether you think them stupidly expensive you have to admire their skill.  I didn’t go to the Forgeworld open day this year however it didn’t matter.  A new website and new models.  For me I was hoping Garro would be released (the former Death Guard Battle-Captain) and what a model he is:

Nathaniel Garro, Hand of the Sigillite

I can’t stop there either, the newer Leviathan Dreadnoughts are splendid – make me wish I had to time (and money) to play 30k still.  I still plan though to continue building my Death Guard forces – more in 2016.

Fallout 4

Mixed reviews about this one, lots of moans – but it can’t be the same as FA3 otherwise you’d be bored after just 30 hours.  Currently I’m 80 hours in.  I’ve finished the main story (I went with the Brotherhood) and I’ve done a lot of the side quests and my toon is level 52 but I’m not done.  Nope, still plenty to do.  Bobblehead hunting at the moment, then will collect the magazines and complete all the current sub-quests.  I may then re-play the game and do the other 3 endings…. or might focus on settlement (let a good few die off this time around!).

If you do want to get the most out of the game, pick up the Survival Guide from Prima.  They have a holiday sale on at the moment, so for $9.99 (about £7) you can pick up an online (not downloadable) guide which compared to a lot I’ve looked at, is pretty well done.  Invaluable if you want to scour the complete wasteland without wasting much time, but do like I did, play the game, complete it and then get it.

Maulifaux

Now a game that really tickles my heart (and taxes my brain).  I only got into this game during the early part of this year and have only played a few games of it but I love the models and the idea (and at the moment the randomness of the game).

Wyrd games have got one hell (pun intended) of a release schedule and from what I know these are just the plastic re-sculpts of older metal miniatures.  However I don’t care.  Coming now(ish) and soon(ish) (I’m in the UK so have to wait) are 2 releases for the Resurrectionists, these folks, the Drowned and the Gaki….

I’d also note that Wyrd Games were perhaps the first (that I noticed) to move away from studio painted to showing 3d sculpts and artwork on the boxes.  Works very well as no longer does it make you think ‘that painting is great, I can’t get to that level’.

Rippers Resurrected RPG

A little known RPG but again a game that I love the idea behind.  Think of this as the Victorian version of Hunter, so rather than being super hero player characters, you’re the unusual heros who take on the rippertech and use it to hunt down and kill off all those nasty things.  I backed a Kickstarter for this in September (more a pre-order I think) but over the last 48 hours I’ve managed to download all the new stuff (I backed at PDF level) and over the new year I’ll be eager to see how it’s moved on from the 1st edition.  Go here to find out more.

It’s a setting for the Savage Worlds rules, and I like these rules as they’re more light hearted and a lot simpler – a mix of online RPG and book based RPG rules.  Worth looking into if you want a fresh system that can be applied to any setting.

 

Finally we come to…

Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition

Technically it’s not ‘out’ in printed form, but Chaosium have finally released the PDF + Ebook versions of the rules for us all to enjoy.  I backed the Kickstarter all those years ago and so hope that in earlyish 2016 I’ll see the physical books arrive at my door step.  I can’t also wait for a few folks at Fantasy Grounds finish off the 7th Edition rules set – so that I may then convert over Horror on the Orient Express…..

Here’s the cover images for the main 2 rulebooks plus the keepers screen.  Go here to get yourself the free quick start rules.

So that’s it folks, plenty happening in 2015 and I could go on and on and on, but I’ll leave it at this.

Have yourselves a wonderful New Year and I hope to return far more regular in 2016.

Cheers
MBM