I’ve been slowing my posting on Variance Hammer for a couple reasons – ironically, the relentless pace of GW releases makes it hard to talk about any one thing in depth, and a couple pre-orders going a bit wrong has meant I’ve been behind enough on a few that it’s not been worth doing. This has been compounded by not having much time – work, and preparation for the LVO.
And man, prep for the LVO is grim. It’s going to come down to the wire. Right now, there’s an awfully large sea of plastic that needs to be painted, and only a few weeks to do it in.
But it is the beginning of the year, and thus a time to reflect, ponder, and look ahead.
I do this mainly by stealing a format I once found on a programming blog I liked. Last year’s entry is here. In essence, it’s a series of retrospective questions.
What’s the coolest wargaming model, book, tool etc. you discovered in 2016?
This is tough. Beyond tough. Games Workshop really kicked things into high gear in 2016, and there’s been a wealth of really outstanding stuff, and I’ve also expanded my hobby range well outside where I was a year ago.
Which is where the winner comes in. My airbrush.
Last year at this time, I didn’t even own one. The airbrush is pretty much the key to my hobby at this point. The only way for me to do the Imperial Fists at all (non-airbrushing took like 7 hours for one tactical Marine) and the only way I even have a chance at painting eight drop-pods before February. It’s seriously changed how I view painting vehicles and base coating, which were the two things I dreaded the most.
What new hobby technique did you learn in 2016?
Following on the heels of the last question – basic airbrushing. I’m not a master by far, but I feel like I’ve got basic zenithal highlighting down to the point where I’m happy with what comes out, and won’t make a complete hash of things.
Which hobby-related blog, podcast or website did you read/listen to the most in 2016?
I backed off a little bit on this in 2016, mostly because I moved to a new town, and didn’t have to do the occasional massive multi-hour drive every few weeks. My hobby go-tos remain the Independent Characters as well as Forge the Narrative, even if I occasionally yell at my car stereo listening to both of them.
What would you have done differently in 2016?
I had some serious hobby ADD. Did some Eldar. Did some Imperial Fists. Did some terrain. Now doing some Space Wolves. For next year, I really want to focus on something and really hammer it out until it’s done. Likely the Imperial Fists to get them to a field-able 2500 point list for Horus Heresy.
What are the top things you want to learn in 2017?
In 2016, I wanted to field my Eldar fully pained, and learn some new skills – particularly push my painting by learning yellow. Both of those are largely accomplished. So what I’d like to do now is expand what I’ve learned – getting better at the airbrush and learning some more advanced techniques, and then translating that to large models – I’ve just begun painting my first Knight, but I’ve got a backlog of large, centerpiece models that need my attention. Like this one:
What is the top wargaming model, book, tool, etc. you wish someone would release in 2016?
Plastic. Sisters. of. Battle. This was my answer last year, and GW has given me a cruel taste. Celestine is amazing. But she deserves a proper army to go with her. Legions of the faithful to take the field beside her.
Beyond that? I’m really quite happy. People have talked about 8th Edition, and while I too suspect it’s coming, I’d probably prefer to see a number of books brought into line first before we take that particular plunge.
Now how about you? What happened in your 2016?