Thursday, June 20, 2013

A Trip Down Memory Lane

 Hey folks, Bob here with some random rumblings for you. Recent internet issues have set me back a bit on writing so I am going to have to play catch up over the next week or so. Anyways the theme of today's post is some random stuff I found while at my folk's place. I recently did some rearranging of the living room hobby bookshelf and ran across some gems I had forgotten about as well as a surprise unopened kit from many moons ago. Before I begin in ernest I leave you with the following image and disclaimer as to the content and nature of this article. Enjoy!
Me in 40 or so years
WARNING!!! Random thoughts and observations incoming! Be prepared for talk of "back in the day" and other such rose tinted mutterings. Reader discretion is advised. Proceed at your own risk.

 Alright gentle reader, now that the disclaimer is out of the way I will now get to the crux of the article. So the random kit I found was an unopened box of Eldar Guardians from way back in 3rd edition. Check out the price on this sucker, $30 for a box of sixteen models.Now before you roll your eyes and go "great, another rant about GW price policies and how evil they are" stick with me. Everyone and their brother hates how much it costs to buy GW kits these days. "Back in the day" you could get a box of almost double the number of models for less than today. That isn't what was totally surprising to me. What was surprising to me was a different little sticker on the box.

Ah the good ole days of $30 kits that were actually kind of worth it
 Check out this little dude. A batch code number. What is this you may be asking? Well it is an obvious indicator of quality control, or at least an attempt at it. Now don't get me wrong, GW has always been great to me about replacing messed up models and stuff, but I really wish they would do a bit more quality control on the front end (couch cough Finecast cough cough).
Holy quality control Batman!

Okay so first out of the book shelf is a little book called "The Empire at War". It is a purely background supliment that covers five major battles in the history of the Empire from the first Battle of Blackfire Pass through the Battle of the Gates of Kislev and the Battle of Hel Fenn. It is written from the perspective of a retired Empire Marshal who wants to recount five types of battles and the tactics behind them for future generations. Each battle in the book centers around a theme such as encirclement, firepower, ambush etc. It is a great background book filled with rich descriptions of the battles and famous regiments that participated in them. The illustrations are great and highlight the actual movements of regiments during the battles phase by phase.

I really wish GW would do more books like this. They are great resources for ideas for campaigns or themes for armies. I also love reading more about pivotal battles in the history of the Warhammer world and the 40k universe.

Next up is a cool little book called "Xenology". This is a great book written from the perspective of an Ordo Xenos operative investigating a distress signal from an Inquisition research facility and reading some of the reports of the researchers as he goes along. I think the most important aspect of the book is that it gives us a deeper look at the often mentioned but never shown Hrud as well as a few other previously unmentioned/not shown xenos species. It is full of cool dissection drawings and interesting pieces of lore about each major species.

The last book I have for you today is my favorite of the lot. It is "The Sabbat Worlds Crusade" and it is of course based on the best selling Gaunt's Ghosts series from the Black Library. If anyone is looking for a series to start then by all means pick up the first Ghosts omnibus and the Eisenhorn trilogy, both by Dan Abnett. He is by far the best author writing for BL and his books never disappoint. This book focuses on the beginning of the Sabbat Worlds Crusade which took place in the mid 700s M41. What I love most about the Ghosts series is that it focuses on the Guard and has them fighting Chaos foot soldiers. It presents an Imperial war against Chaos how it would most likely be in terms of actual lore and background. Traitor Marines play a very small role compared to the massed ranks of human Chaos followers. The Crusade book gives the reader a glimpse at events eluded to in the Ghosts books during the pivotal early years of the Crusade and goes up to the events of the first four or five Ghosts books. I would LOVE to see an updated version of this book that brings events up to the most current Ghosts book. The action in the current Ghosts books focuses on the regiment and the actions of a single crusade army group while there are three other active fronts in the war.

Well that didn't turn out to rant laden or nostalgia heavy after all. Next up on the to do list of articles will likely be one of several things, a look at the new Eldar codex, what I have been building/painting lately, or a discussion about some different 28mm models from some emerging companies. I will do my level best to get another article out by Wednesday the 26 of June. I will be heading to France on the 27th for several weeks to do some archaeology and have some fun. I plan to go to at least one GW store while I am over there, most likely in Paris but possibly in the city of Clermont-Ferrand near where I will be working and living. So stay tuned and as always happy gaming!