Friday, June 19, 2009

To the Defense of 40K

**Note** I wrote this blog post last week when I first read the blog post in question. I didn't publish it right away, because I wanted to make sure that I wasn't just having a knee-jerk "don't say anything bad about something I like" reaction. I still feel as strongly today as I did last week so I'm comfortable posting this.

I'm sure most of you have seen the posting out at Bell of Lost Souls that linked to an old blog post that disparaged Warhammer 40k. If not you can see it here. Basically the author decides to point out that 40K is for adults, but they do it with an amazing amount of ignorance, baseless accusations, and poorly thought out arguments.

At first I wanted to respond. Then I didn't want to waste my time. Then my buddy Steve wrote an excellent rebuttal on his blog. In the end I think the rebuttal posted at the end of the blog post, and my buddy's combine to make an excellent counter point (actually the rebuttal at the end of the blog post combined with any other well thought out rebuttal would make an excellent counter point) (actually, any well thought out rebuttal would make an excellent counter point, the rebuttal included in the original blog post is good but is way too short).

Basically the author took some attention getting advertising and marketing tools and used them as both support for their arguments, and as the basis for their arguments. Suffice it to say, I'm glad this person isn't playing 40K, because if they were anything like their blog post then the emotional unbalance could give 40K a bad name. Also, as funny as that comment is, the arguments made in the article are even more baseless.

The one that really got my attention was when the blogger was commenting on the Cities of Death expansion:
When children think of cities, they SHOULD think of them as great places to hide out to kill everyone they can find. Because that's what cities are for. Even churches are good to blow up and stuff because it's way fun. Everyone wants to blow up churches and mosques and hunt down every last civilian, with urban tactics and go block by block until you're sure every last one of them is dead.

Because that is FUN. It's a HOOT. A barrel of LAFFS. Let's have a Coke and a donut shall we?
We can talk about shooting little kids and pregnant women, because that'

Now if you look there is a screenshot of the web page for Cities of Death, if you look at the page nothing is in there about killing pregnant women or kids. I could make the accusation that the author is only concerned about the kids because they're a pedophile and wants to be the one to scar the psyche, not some silly game. I would be no better than them, but I would be using the same exact tactics.

That's what grinds my gears about this blog post. With no perceived repercussions the author was able to say what they wanted about something they just decided to get their bug up their butt about. Oh sure the blogger is persona non grata amongst 40K players, but obviously our opinion doesn't count. But yet that post will live on, and no matter how much we, as players who know what we're talking about, speak out against it, the damage is done. It's the anonymity, which helps breed the baseless dogmatic B.S. that permeates the internet.

Really, it's a lack of respect for other people, and a palpable laziness about doing research.

Actually, this pretty much says what I feel about the gunslinger mentality of the blogo-interweb-sphere-verse.

That's why I promise no matter how much I might dislike something (country music, Hannah Montana, the comedic stylings of Carrot Top), I'm not going to bash it. And if I do take exception to the point of commenting, I guarantee my information will be based on facts on not some cursory glance through a website looking for ways to complain about it.

Oh, and I'm willing to say that the blogger that started the whole thing can go to hell. I would even say that to their face.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Boss Zagstruk

After starting, getting sidetracked by Dawn of War II, restarting, stopping to get ready for my step-daughter's open house, restarting yet again, and probably 15 - 20 hours of total time working on him: Zagstruk is finished...for the most part. I have a few minor details to finish up (a decal on a wing, a couple parts that need the colors blended at the seams, seal the paint...), but in my grandest George W. Bush moment I'm willing to call him finished even with some work left to do.

I'm pleased with him. I'm surprised how hefty, and how large he is. I mean I knew he'd be heavier since he was metal, and I knew he'd be larger...but he's substantially larger than I expected.

I tried some new techniques, mixing paints, using some washes, I still did some dry brushing, but I also used my detail brush to highlight some of the highs and lows in the details as well.

The final push to complete him came at my buddy Steve's painting party. Not many could make it, but those of us who did all accomplished something. Jason (of Bob Waaagh! fame) is working on terrain and he completed his sacrificial pool. Steve made headway on several of his Space Marines. I got there late, and spent probably 5 1/2 hours on Zagstruk. I'm glad he's done - his was the first miniature to exhaust me - but now I have a boat load of catching up to do on our 400 point challenge. I have to finish my boyz, I have to paint my Nobz and Stormboyz. I have a Warboss to paint...and while it seems a lot....I'm loving every minute of it.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

40k Lesson #36

Here are a list of things I like to have going in the background when I paint minis (in no particular order):
1) Dawn of War or Dawn of War II soundtrack
2) Other music (preferably something geeky like Bad Dudes or a movie soundtrack)
3) Detroit Tigers games
4) 40k podcasts

One thing I learned the other day, though, is hockey and miniature painting do NOT go well together.

I tried to paint over the weekend during the Wings/Pens Stanley Cup Finals (I know the NHL dropped the "s" in Finals this year, but I refuse to acknowledge such ridiculousness). It didn't work. Errant brush strokes. Paint that dried on the pallet while I stared transfixed at the TV. A dropped piece or 2. A broken brush when I got pissed off and snapped it in my hands as I clenched my fists. That dead hooker.

All in all, it just isn't worth it.

And since the Wings blew a good opportunity by allowing 3 unanswered goals in the 2nd period of game 4...I'm turning the game off and painting tonight. I've got enough things between my family and work to piss me off, I don't need the Wings pushing me over the edge. I will NOT buy a gun. I will NOT go on a shooting spree. And I sure as hell will NOT have my last words be "Dakka dakka." least in that context. If my last words are "dakka dakka" when I die of old age....or in bed with Felicia Day, then so be it. I can live with that.