02 August 2007

Well, being in front of a computer tends to do that.

I guess the nature of work involving lots of computations is that there's a fair amount of downtime. I'm waiting for some calculations, and shit -- I'm already in front of a computer, so I might as well blog.

In a related note, I was granted use of their computer cluster which has some 16 or so nodes with a variety of processors (I saw AMD64 a lot in the node list). It's kind of neat to fight for spots in the cluster. Maybe they should just buy a bunch of Xboxes?

And because I'm in front of a computer so much, I've taken to perusing through some sites that I haven't checked in awhile, including Games-Workshop stuff...

I've decided that I really want to get back into some GW mini-gaming, particularly any of their Skirmish offerings:

In case you're wondering, a Skirmish game deviates from GW's normal offerings in that you're not dealing with managing an entire company sized detachment/issuing commands to squads. Instead, you're down to the individual soldier level, and this affords a bit of personality to each and every man/woman/creature you control. Furthermore, each game tends to have a bit of character to it, which is always nice. This also has the advantage of only having to buy a small amount of models instead of a massive army, and you can lavish more detail and attention to each model.

Think Final Fantasy Tactics and you should get an idea for what these games are like.

1. Necromunda: Definitely Warhammer 40K (WH40K) themed -- it takes place in that time period. It's mainly human-on-human conflict in the form of gangs. It's got the same great dark and dystopian feel that characterizes the 40K world. Players control gangs numbering around 7-12 models. There's a bit of strategy involved in choosing House affiliation, armaments, gang members, etc. Different gangs then go at it in a long campaign style game, with periods inbetween action to manage and modify their gangs. The rules and related material can all be found here.

2. Gorkamorka: No longer supported in any way, but I still have the rules (Gorkamorka will always hold a special place in my heart because it was the first mini-game that I played) and getting models is easy. In fact, the WH40K Ork line is one and the same, or in many cases easily convertable. The premise is the same as Necromunda, but the game has a more distinct and wackier feel to it, which is consistent with the weird wacky-goofy-brutal Ork character. There's also vehicle combat. Imagine gangs of Orks going at it in a Mad Max sort of world. You can be either cunningly brutal or brutally cunning.

3. Mordheim: Set in the Warhammer Fantasy Battle timeline (sort of) in the eponymous (ruined) city of Mordheim. Players again manage bands intent on scouring the ruins of the city and fighting for territory. You can be either human, ratmen-like Skaven, Elven, Dwarven, Orcish, or even Undead... just to name a few. It's got, like Necromunda, a darker and more serious feel to it as well as a horror/Halloween sort of theme going on. The rules are here.

If anyone else wants to play when I get back State-side, just tell me. I'll front the communal costs, but would-be players need to buy their own miniatures... though I'm sure we can work something out. I'm not even sure why I'm bringing this up at all because I know I'm not going to have any time once I get back to school, but hey, you can always hope, right? And I can't get in trouble for owning small models of guns and swords that are smaller than my index finger. Well, I hope so. I mean, heck, some people think I'm Korean.

In other news, I've got two weeks until I get on a plane to get back home, though through that hassle of Heathrow.

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