> How I got into gaming: The Azure Flames « The Four Strands

The Four Strands Modeling, Painting, Gaming and Storytelling

24Jan/110

How I got into gaming: The Azure Flames

Everyone who is a gamer gets into it somehow.  I got into it when my friend Joe invited me to a meeting of Studio 40K, the wargaming club of MSU (now defunct, different rant later).  This was in the winter of 2000/2001, early in the 3rd edition of 40K.  I picked Space Marines, specifically the Salamanders.  They had cheap Terminators and never gave up.  However, I didn't like green marines, so I made my own successor chapter: the Azure Flames.

My first purchase was a Devastator squad.  The old pewter devastator box which had all the heavy weapons except the Multi Melta.  Actually a really bad box set, as a dev squad with those weapons was expensive and almost useless.  I learned and collected quickly though.  That following summer I followed this pattern: buy unit, paint unit, buy another unit.  I eventually had one of everything the Space Marines could take.  And I kept going.

Then, during the very last auction that Games Workshop held in its stores, I won a Blood Angels combination, consisting of Dante and some honor guard, some Death Company, and a few other things including a Baal Pred.  I made them into a Flesh Tearers army that was actually pretty impressive.  Sadly, after the advent of 4th ed, Blood Angels were vastly underpowered and I never played them.  I sold the lot bit by bit at a con.  People went nuts for the paint jobs and the custom vehicles.  My greatest pleasure was selling the remainder and the custom case to a kid who never had an army.  Made me feel good.

At this time, 4th edition was in it's crappy heyday.  Vehicles were rolling tombs and gunline tactics were boring as hell.  That's when my good friend Lexington got me into Warmachine.  I chose to play Cygnar, the jewel of the Iron Kingdoms.  I expanded into mercenaries, as long as they worked with Cygnar.  Warmachine and I have had an on-again off-again relationship, as Privateer Press tends to make wonderful systems and then break them with ridiculous new combos.  2nd ed is a million times better than 1st though.

Then, the newest Ork codex came out.  Orks were fun.  I toyed around with ideas and made my own "counts as" characters corresponding to all the characters in the new Codex.  I knew I had to play.  So I bought a huge amount of Orks, and made the warband of Poindexta Smartyskull, the Ork with two brains!  I did weird and ridiculous conversions and tried a new painting method: dipping.  It worked great.

Then (once again thanks to Lexington) I found the sweet, sweet crack rock of Specialist Games.  This was back in 2007, when ChaosOrc had stock.  I actually purchased enough Epic scale Space Marines to make an ENTIRE CHAPTER!  I also camped ebay for deals on some of the newer vehicles.  I played a game of Epic against Lexington's Eldar.  Then he sold them.  Then I played one game against his new Chaos.  Then he sold them.  *sigh*  He was going through rough times.

At the same time as my Epic indulgence, I found deals on Space Marine craft for Battlefleet Gothic.  I became obsessed with rules, and made my own rules guides for Epic and Gothic.  I took the rules and condensed them down into 10 pt single spaced outlines that essentially explain all possible things.  I worked in a print shop and was able to make them into a laminated spiral bound flip chart for easy access.

Recently I've become a little obsessed with Specialist Games.  I had a Necromunda Orlock gang I bought at a con for a campaign that never materialized, but I bought a Delaque gang, and had my friend Jen custom make me a Necromunda board that looks fantastic.  I also painted my Battlefleet Gothic Space Marines, and bought and (almost completely) painted an Imperial Navy and a Chaos fleet.  I also recently purchased some plastic Lizardmen and Tyranid bitz to make a Lizardmen Blood Bowl team.

As you can see, I've got a lot on my plate.  I'll post pictures of what I've done and thoughts on what I'm going to do.

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