Age of Sigmar at NOVA – Part 3

Saturday was a our big day of gaming, and I described the first two rounds in the previous post: Part 2

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WAoS Scenario 3

For the third and final round, the TO set up the realmgates I had put together with some help from a couple of the local players in my group, with one prominently at the center of each table with a special scenario to score victory points by holding or even controlling the 10″ diameter space around the center of the gate.

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The scores up to this round were close, although Norbert had claim to a significant lead with his Tomb Kings. But despite Tim’s Brettonian knights charging in and wrecking skeletons across the field, the Green Knight was busy elsewhere and the Lady remained with the artillery in the safety of the rear, and the Tomb Kings once more swept the field and won the final objective.

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All together, everyone seemed to enjoy the casual nature of the event–Age of Sigmar is still new to all of us, and everyone was still learning new aspects of the rules along with the house rules we had put together for the event. I certainly had a great time helping out with NOVA this year, and with helping to organize and run the Age of Sigmar event in particular. I’m already planning terrain pieces and a narrative event for next year!

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Norbert won the overall painting & battle points prize, Richard won best battle points with his Skaven army, and Eric won best painter. Finally, on Sunday, we awarded the campaign prize to Sean for playing additional games and making the longest trip down from New York to attend.

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Age of Sigmar at NOVA – Part 2

First, I can’t say enough about how awesome NOVA Open is as a gaming convention.

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Walking around, there IMG_0068was so much to see, from the huge Imperial Star Destroyer scaled to the X-Wing game, complete with lights, to the vendor hall with mini medic tables for quick repairs, the lemonade raffle with prizes for players losing games, and the demo tables for Wrath of Kings and HALO Fleet Battles.

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Saturday morning started with everyone on time and ready to play. We had a great group of players, everyone already acquainted from the games played the night before, and we were ready to roll.Wstart

The first round was randomly matched. We had two players with Duardin, one with Wood Elves, another with Skaven, Tomb Kings, and, of course, Tim with his Bretonnian Knights which looked as awesome on the table as they did on their display board.

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DSCF3935The Duardin seemed to be no match for the Tomb Kings and their summoning, but this was largely an experiment with competitive play in the relatively new Age of Sigmar game system. Everyone was proud of their painted figures, and the atmosphere was fun and adventurous, and the players were gracious in giving us credit for trying to organize an Age of Sigmar event merely two months after the release. I have never before had the privilege of managing such a fine group of players–there were some questions about the rules, and again of the special restrictions in place for this particular event, but otherwise the players managed themselves.skaven

After lunch, we were off with the second round, and the Skaven were on the battlefield in force. But those Bretonnian Knights came on fast, and the Green Knight could not be killed. At the end of the day, however, the Skaven hordes put up a good fight, and they managed to hold critical ground which was key to victory.

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The Tomb Kings, however, continued to roll over their opponents, and another Duardin army was destroyed.

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The end of round two left everyone ready for more. Even Laini was ready for the final round, even though she had challenging fights in the first two and was convinced she would end up placing last in the ranking at the end of the day.

Again, this was the most incredible group I’ve ever had the privelege to manage–I joked with my co-lead and the TO for this particular event that the players didn’t even need us.

I’ll save the final round and results of the first Age of Sigmar event at NOVA Open for the third and final installment of this blog series.

Age of Sigmar at the NOVA Open 2015 – Part 1

It is finished! And I had no reason to worry. We didn’t have much time to plan, but everyone at the NOVA Open was helpful and supportive–and, most importantly, a small but enthusiastic group of players showed up to play games and have fun!

Things got off to a great start when I picked up the guidebook containing the schedule and event guidelines–it was only about two weeks ago that we submitted the material (after the deadline), but here it was with graphics and in print!

NOVA guidebook2DSCF3909Then I descended to the ballrooms on the lower level to meet my co-lead; he had already set up terrain on our designated tables, and this was the moment when I was most excited and nervous. Sure, players had registered for the event, but would they show up and have a good time? One of my prime motivations to get involved with planning all this was my wife–she surprised both of us last month by trying and enjoying the game herself, and she was excited to participate and share the experience of the NOVA Open with me.

waos lainiWe had a great location in the big hall behind the Hobbit event which featured some fantastic terrain, and next year I aim to emulate the energy and leadership of the lead for the LotR events. It was humbling to watch him in action with his larger group of players. Overall, we had a decent showing for GW fantasy games even without 8th edition Warhammer Fantasy.

hobbi terrainFriday night we met in the foundation lounge where a big suite had been converted to a bar and hangout space and all the proceeds for the drinks went to charity. Everyone met and talked about Age of Sigmar for an hour, keeping attitudes positive, and then we went downstairs to play some games. I wanted a relatively casual evening of gaming without many composition rules or restrictions, so we played for achievements–most of which did not just reward removing models from the table. After 2 rounds, Tim with his Brets was awarded the first certificate for our AoS events of the weekend. Unfortunately, I don’t know how to hold an award and shake the winner’s hand while posing for a camera at the same time!

IMG_0110But Friday night was a relief–I did not need to worry about hecklers or unhappy players, and even though my wife lost her first game she wasn’t discouraged and remarked about how fair everyone seemed to play. I managed to get in a practice game with an opponent as well–I didn’t have my Stormcast Eternals finished, and my wife had borrowed most of my painted Wood Elves, so I set up a force of old Wolfen Confrontation models as proxies for Ogres. One unit in particular chewed through several small units of plump Duardin.

IMG_0105Even though the Duardin force outnumbered my “Ogres” by more than 200%, we didn’t need to use the Sudden Death victory conditions, and our collective experience over the course of the weekend reinforced everyone’s suspicion of using that new rule in games featuring classic Warhammer factions.

I have plenty more pictures of Saturday, but I’m going to save those for a second post.

Final Days & Nights

NOVA Open is only a few days away–and after taking a sick cat to the vet this afternoon I’m settling down to finish the Realmgates for our AoS scenarios and help my wife with her Wood Elf army.

And, of course, as I’m trimming some foam to pack her army into a case, Puck the Cat just cannot help but get involved. He crawled up under the extra trimmings and curled up for a nap.

puckBut now it’s time to finish the Realmgates! The sand on the bases are dry and I can paint and consider these finished. I’m counting 10 players (we have 9 registered, but one of the guys in my local group had problems with his online cart and is just planning to pay at the door), so I need 5 gates!

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