Friday, September 19, 2014

STGCC 2014

Hi there people!

It has been quite a whirlwind of a period for me dealing with work. Somehow, I manage to catch STGCC 2014 this year. Sadly, I am rather disappointed with this year's event. It almost seems like as the years go by, STGCC appears to be getting less awesome. Through my own observation over the years that STGCC had been held, Guest appearances have been dwindling, some mainstays that made STGCC iconic are not even around anymore and the event highlights seem less impressive.

It does put to question on whether the "Comic/Nerd/Geek" following has dissipated in our sunny island or has ReedPop fail to alleviate STGCC in being the hub for Comic Conventions in Asia?

This year's STGCC saw the absence of the Marvel Space and Panel and Imaginary Friends. There wasn't even a major feature in this year's event that compelled my soul to go. Despite my disappointment in the event as a whole, I manage to find a few stuff that impressed me.

Thanos by XM Studios

For starters,  Imust say that I am thoroughly impressed with XM Studios recent sculpts. Their Magneto and Thanos sculpts were absolutely bad ass. They have come a long way as Singapore's very own producer of limited edition premium statue collectibles. When I first saw them in the first STGCC event, I was not really particularly impress with the sculpts. The details were lacking and the colour rather primary and basic compared to what HOT TOYS and Sideshow had to offer. However, this year, they were one of the main event with the Magneto and Thanos Sculpts.

XM Studio nailed it so well that their Magneto Collectible Sold Out before I had a chance to contemplate the amount for these awesome statue collectible.

"Why are you so beautiful, Groot, Why??"

Another Impressive batch of figures that caught my eye were from DAM Toys. DAM Toys created this series of figures under the name Gangster Kingdom. Gangster Kingdom features Mexicano and British Gangster/Holligan Persona in an animated style that we are familiar with. While it is your standard 1/6 Scale figure, the head sculpts were done to look animated. This particular style was intriguing and cool as usually most 1/6 scale figures are done to look as realistically human as possible.

This UK Thug and its sculpt reminds me very much of Vinnie Jones

A few of the Gangsters from Gangster Kingdom

This particular figure reminds me of Jason Statham. For all intentions and purpose, I am quite sure the sculpt of his head was done to look pretty much like him.

Another Bad Ass

DAM Toys also had a few other gangster, one looking very much like Danny Trejo from his famous action film, Machete as shown below.

Last but not least, Soldier Story attracted me this year with the Zero Dark Thirty DEVGRU Team Leader. This bad ass Seal Team Six Operative had all the equipment to boot as featured in the movie. I for one particularly like the exact details that they have put into sculpting the head likeness to Joel Edgerton who acted as the Seal Team Six Leader. Furthermore, the helmet with those super cool looking 4 lens NVGs are on another level of bad assery not seen even in Call of Duty.

That is one mean looking Seal with the weaponry and equipment one can only dream of

It's Joel Edgerton!

Voltron, Defender of the Universe and his handicap sidekick, Me

I have been looking at what is in store for New York Comic Con and it sounds like it is going to be one mucho supremo magnifico event with the featured guests, exhibitors and panels. While it pales in comparison to San Diego Comic Con, ReedPop has made NYCC look as good as ever. My only hope is that they would do the same for STGCC. Hopefully, STGCC 2015 will be more kick ass. I can only have my fingers crossed for it!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

WFB DE: the Humble Warrior Regiment

Hey Everyone

Congratulations to our giveaway winner Bill Jenkins, and JQ & I would like to thank you all for your readership. Keep a heads up as more giveaways would come along in the future :)

Today we will be taking a look at the bread and butter core unit of the Dark Elves: the warrior regiment. I'll refer to them as "warriors" in spite of 8th edition terms. "Dreadspears" is too corny for me, and I am pissed about how new editions change everything =  $$$ for GW. This unit was another ebay find for me, painted at a reasonable price.

DE and a nice grassy landscape - can only be bad news...
The warrior regiments are derived from the DE citizenry, and all members are expected to serve in their local militias. DE warriors are the typical basic infantry unit: mundane stats and dependence on numbers. Magic banners and shields are added to ensure a degree of durability of the unit.

DE gender equality: males and females fight alongside each other.
I've only played my DE army twice. Once against a High Elf army, and another against Chaos. The HE army was brought down by my hydra (they're awesome), while the Chaos fight was more even...unfortunately the battle was invalidated by the incorrect use of rules. My fully beefed up DE warrior regiment surprisingly (or luckily) held the line against a Chaos warrior regiment.

All citizens form the rank and file of this unit.
Assassins are one reason why playing DE is maliciously fun. They can hide in regiments and then be unleashed at the right moment on an unsuspecting character. Your enemy will always be on their toes if they know you have an assassin around. They have ridiculous WS, and with an added hand weapon, they can spell the end of most characters.

Blades so tarnished they could give you tetanus just by looking at it.
I picked DE as my "evil" army and wanted to explore if the writers could construct a feasible society that was evil, and yet had an eye on realm longevity. In short, a "lawful evil" society that still had some statutes in place, and question whether GW could move evil societies beyond caricature.

DE: Slavers 'r Us of WFB.
Boy was I in for disappointment! The DE turned out to be just plain evil, exploiting their slaves to death (using their corpses as fertilizer), holding countless blood orgies, backstabbing each other on a regular basis, and always seething with hatred every single day. Going to maximum evil/exploitative on the majority of actions is a sure way of destroying your own empire.

So far, I am still skeptical if such a completely evil society could truly exist in a fantasy world. I could also be missing the point, as fantasy could be the creating of caricatures without a nod to realism. On the flip-side, realism in fantasy worlds may have an "equalizing" effect, where all sides appear to be all morally imperfect. Should fantasy be another world by itself, or should it reflect the real world we live in?

I think that depends on what you like in the end...Tolkien or GRRM?

Close-up for the shield.