Skycon continues…

Hello!

In our last episode, Bill and I arrived at Skycon and stopped at one booth. Now we continue our epic journey 6 metres to the right to the next booth we stopped at!

Meet Stephen and Simon:

Stephen and Simon compressed
These guys were fun and friendly to talk to. And so talented!

Stephen is from Harpy Hobbies, and he sculpts different sized scenic bases for tabletop miniatures. If you’ve ever wanted your army, or centrepiece models to look like they are actually standing on some part of an actual battlefield, but weren’t very good at decorating bases to ended up going with basic flock, or plain goblin green, then he has your solution! There were dried-up earth bases, ice bases, industrial bases, and more. All available in 25mm, 32mm, and 40mm sizes! And even cooler than that (in my opinion), dragon heads on plaques, ready to be hung on the wall! He had two left, and they were reduced in price to well beyond reasonable and I wanted one, but still can’t afford one on my budget! (You can help remedy this sad state of affairs here.)  Check it out:

Stephen's bases and Dragon Heads compressed
Here there be dragons! So cool!

Right next to him was Simon, who was working on a painting of a dragon right there at the table. Around him were more of his amazing works.

Simon painting compressed

You can see more of his art and learn about more of what he has been up to here: www.simonraskina.com. In addition to making his own art and taking commissions, he also does art workshops for kids! He is on Instagram as well, of course.

After talking to these guys for a bit, Bill and I decided to go and see what was going on with the games. We walked around in the halls and saw the Blood Bowl tournament beginning, and in-progress Malifaux tournament, and Guild Ball was just starting as well. In that same room, we saw some entries coming in for a painting contest hosted by Jack’s on Queen in Elmvale.

There was a Battle of Britain game with a bunch of planes on telescoping rods which I needed to go an look at, because planes! I think they were in the range of 1/72 scale, because they were similar in size to the ones I used to build when I was younger. Planes! For some reason unknown to me now, I didn’t get a picture.

Battle of Britain
“Steer 2 – 3 – 0.”  “Repeat, please.”

Speaking of historical battles, check out this layout:

Seven Years War 15mm compressed

This battle was called “Prelude to Lobositz”, and was a 15mm battle that takes place during the Seven Year’s War. Frederick the Great’s Prussians are invading Saxony. If you want to know more, try this site. For a quick and entertaining look at how the Seven Year’s War affected North America, try John Green’s Crash Course

Then we went for lunch.

After lunch, we played games! These ones:

Dimension is a game about making a stack of coloured spheres according to the restrictions laid out by the cards. You get one point for each sphere in your stack (you can get a maximum of 11 in the pile), but you lose 2 points for each task you don’t complete, such as making sure that all green spheres touch blue spheres, and that there are exactly a specific number of one colour, or a greater number of one colour than another, for example. This is a great logical puzzle game as you try to find a pattern that fulfills all of the requirements while under a time limit. We met a lovely lady named Gail who played this one with us.

Dimensions compressed

I would definitely use this in class to help kids with patterning and reasoning skills.

 

We also played Tak, which is a game that is mentioned in Patrick RothfussKingkiller Chronicle book “The Wise Man’s Fear“. We played the “University” edition, which is a smaller “travel” edition play by students at the University that Kvothe attends. I am really enjoying this series, and eagerly anticipating the release of the next book, but I’m not angry about how long it is taking like a bunch of other fantasy nerds. Anyway, it’s a simple set of rules with a lot of layers of strategy. You really need to be aware of what your opponent’s possible next moves are while focusing on setting up your own plan to win.

Tak with Bill compressed

Later on, we played Hoard, which is about stealing treasure from a dragon. I quite liked this one also. It was fun, as you go around the dragon on the treasure, picking up cards to make a set, like in Gin Rummy, but there are other cards you can use to affect your opponent, or try to awaken the dragon to end the round when you are winning, or get the dragon to go back to sleep if you’re not.

Playing Hoard compressed Playing Hoard 2 compressed

There is a memory aspect to this, as you can look at a cad you land on, even if you choose not to take it. I didn’t really use this part, though, because it was getting late and my memory needed a break.

Here is Boss Monster, which is notorious, apparently, for the difficulty of understanding its rules, but once you figure it out, it is fun. You build a dungeon to attract heroes and then kill them, so you can harvest their souls. If they make it past your monsters and traps before they run out of health, they wound your boss monster. Get 5 wounds and you lose.

Boss Monster compressed

We chose our boss monsters randomly, and I got Cerebellus, Father Brain, and Bill got Seducia, Sorceress of Sexiness, so I guess it wasn’t that random after all. Our characters fit us well!

This is Strike Fleet Zero, a space combat game.

Strike Fleet Zero compressed

We were invited to join in a game by the designer. It was quite fun. You have squadrons of fighters an bombers, as well as capital ships called gunships. They each move differently, and have different weapons systems and defenses, and the idea is to shoot the enemy ships and blow them up.

Strike Fleet Zero board compressed

It’s on a hex grid, and fire arc differ on different ships as well, depending on whether their weapons have turrets. According to the developer, what makes this one stand out is the campaign system and the customisability, as you outfit your ships all sorts of different ways. The campaign system allows for building of bases and shipyards which give extra effects to your fleets, and are represented on the combat map if you attack an area that contains one.

Look at some of the different types of ships there are already, and these are just for one of the 3 factions:

Strike Fleet Zero ship cards compressed

 

And finally, on Saturday, there was The Lords of Rock! In this game, we had a rock band of the gods! We each chose a different pantheon, formed a band, and then battled it out in different arenas for souls! When you choose your band, you need to take 4 members, mine, being the Elder Gods, was led by Cthulhu on the bass. There are four primary skills you need to have represented, bass, guitar, vocals, and drums. At each venue, when you play a show, you put together a set list of songs that give certain bonuses to some of the skills. The venues also restrict which skills can be used, and you can play negative effect set list cards on your opponent to give penalties to their totals. Then you add up all of your skill values, bonuses and penalties, and the collected souls bases on whether you finished 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and so on at that particular battle of the bands.

The Lords of Rock compressed

 

And then suddenly it was midnight and time to go home. I couldn’t return on the Sunday, but Bill did. Some of these games were on the “Play to Win” table, meaning that if we played the game, we could put our name in a draw to win that game. The draw was on Sunday, and we won three of them! Exciting!

Thanks for reviewing our time at Skycon with us! Keep checking the Events and News pages to see where we will be in the future, and we hope to see you there. Feel free to comment or ask questions below!