Thursday, May 22, 2014

Beer Review - Great Lakes Rye of the Tiger IPA.

Not my photo! From

Great Lakes Brewing Company - Rye of the Tiger IPA
Beer Type: American IPA - 7.50% ABV

Appearance: 12oz brown bottle with the classic Great Lakes style label with a tiger on the front. Beer poured a orange-golden color with a thin white head that faded quickly.       

Smell: Biscuits and malt, a little caramel sweetness, and some piney hops and rye spice.    

First Drink: Here come those tiger biscuits! Next up is a bit of caramel malt and last we have that hops and bitterness. Yum!     

Mouthfeel: Medium all around, both body and carbonation.      

Last Drink: Some grapefruit and orange flavors coming through now. I don't know why... but this beer totally makes me think of tigers!!           

Drinkability: Damn fine. I love rye beers and this one did not disappoint. I'll go for it again no problem.            

Notes: Nice balance with more rye spice and less hops grassy-notes. Diggin' it.        

Verdict: 4 out of 5. Solid IPA and one of the first (only?) beers I know to make me think of animals while drinking.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Progress Report 5/21/14 - In a bit of a Deadzone.

Time for some painting progress! First up is the Ogre Maneater I am making for a fellow Ogre lover and friend named Gnoblar_Herder (well that is one name he goes by, another one is Al). These are just basecoats and I haven't done any details yet.

Then we have a bunch of Deadzone Rebs models with paint on them (I put the paint on). Still a WIP! Also a building I slapped together to give them a place to "hang out" at. It's a little run down...

And the last photo is the rest of the Rebs force I was hopiing to have painted this month but didn't manage to finish quite yet. About to get back at! Let me know what you think of my palette choices as this was the first time I have painted something "modern" or "sci fi" outside of the Goliath gang. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Beer Review - West Sixth Brewing Company IPA.

West Sixth Brewing Company - West Sixth IPA

Beer Type:
American IPA - 7.00% ABV

Appearance: Beer in a can! A nicely printed and colorful can. Beer poured a hazy-golden color with a nice fat lacy head.      

Smell: Hops and citrus are getting all up in my nose! I can smell a bit of caramel malt too.   

First Drink: Bitter, hoppy, and much sweeter than I had imagined it would be!    

Mouthfeel: Pretty darn thick for an IPA? A little sticky with nice carbonation on my tongue.    

Last Drink: Wishing for a little more hops now. The malt is a little too much but not too sweet.           

I'd drink a six pack no problem.             

Notes: Grabbed this in Kentucky on my way home from Asheville NC on a visit last year.         

Verdict: 3.75 out of 5. Not bad but not as good as the IPA we make here in Michigan! 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Liebster Award - aka a list of blogs and some random questions with answers.

Chris over at Sippin' On Paint Water informed me that I have been awarded with a Liebster. My first thought was "wow cool... I haven't won anything since that trip to Space Camp when I was 9". My second thought was "what the hell is a Liebster!?" but before I get into that... look at this cool award! Thanks Chris!! I'd nominate your blog but I suppose that defeats the purpose a little...

Not a lot of verified/authentic info out there on this award as near as I can tell but here is the gist of it:
  1. The award is given to bloggers by bloggers. 
  2. Liebster is German or maybe the award has German origins?!
  3. Kinda like a chain letter so it only works if you feel like participating.
  4. The "rules" seem to change as people see fit to change them. 
With all that in mind I have decided to go with the "rules" as outlined by Chris on his Sippin' On Paint Water blog. 
  • Copy and paste the award on your blog linking the blogger who has given it to you.
  • Pass the award to your top 11 blogs with less than 200 followers by leaving a comment on one of their posts to notify them that they have won the award and listing them on your own blog.
  • Sit back and bask in the warm fuzzy feeling that you have made someones day.
  • There is no obligation to pass the award on to someone else but it is nice if you take the time to do so.
The format doesn't have to be the same as what I've made so long as the spirit of the award is maintained. It's meant to showcase blogs and authors and increase readership and community. Whatever method is used is irrelevant so long as that goal is achieved.
Alright sounds doable and noble and good! First up I'll say that I won't be adhering to the "less than 200 followers" rule as the goal here is to expose folks to sites they might otherwise look over or not come across and to me the number of followers does not always correlate to how well known something is or isn't. With that out of the way here are 11 blogs I think you should check out (in no particular order of course).
  • Playing D&D With Porn Stars - I love the content here and the vast imagination on display. Zak has a great sense of humor and a real "human" quality about him that comes through in the writing and posts. The porn stars part is really secondary.
  • The Man Cave - I wish I had a dad like Paul. Cool minis, cool games, and a cool guy to boot! 
  • Hack & Slash - For all things RPG design related you can't go wrong with this blog. Tons of information for practical application as well as interesting theory and discussion topics on game design. Love it! 
  • Horror Movies and Beer! - Eerie Erik is like my brother from another mother. While his blog doesn't have any gaming focus it does have monsters, horror, blood, boobs, and beer so you'll probably find something you'll like. 
  • Furry's Painting Blog - Furry is my local miniature painting buddy and in this blog he has been capturing his work as a budding miniature painter. Cool stuff by a cool guy.
  • Belched from the Depths - Awesome collection of RPG minis from then til now. Always inspirational to me.
  • New Brew Thursday - Nerds nerding out over new beers. You'll probably see the connection.
  • The Magnificent Bastards - Magnificent bastards writing about magnificent minis. A lot of GW stuff but they have great stuff in here for all sorts of miniature bastards.
  • Painting Mum - Life, love, minis, and plenty of painting to boot.
  • Monster Brains - The mighty Monster Brains is a regular source of fascination and excitement for me. Monsters forever!!
  • Amateur Hour - Mattias is a cool guy I met at Chaos Cup last year. While I kicked the crap out of his elves (yuck elves!) we had a fun time and it was most exciting to discover he was blogging his work too! Oh yeah and he likes beer too.
Highly recommend any and all of these blogs and people. While I know some more than others (and some not at all) I can say without reservation that they all provide something unique and exciting to my blog traveling world. 

Now we're on to this Q&A bit where I ramble on about things that most people probably don't care about or maybe already know about me. Here we go!!
  1. Why did you start blogging? - Well it certainly wasn't the word "blog" or "blogging" or "bloggin" or "bloggo" or any of that which got me started. In fact I would say that word is probably the biggest barrier of entry for me into this thing. I spent a bunch of time writing things for myself, kept an online journal for awhile (still do sometimes), and was posting on forums somewhat obsessively before I started Drinkin' and Modelin'. My original goal was simple: motivation. I figured if I was able to share what I was doing and experiencing in the world of miniature and tabletop gaming (and gaming in general) I would feel more motivated to get cool stuff done (and maybe also motivate others in the process). The beer reviews were just a thing I was doing on the side anyway and I figured it was a good a place as any to collect that information for future use (and for anyone else who might be interested).

  2. If you could change one thing about the wargaming hobby, what would it be? - Honestly I am not all that into the "wargaming hobby" any longer. I haven't played a game of WHFB (which is what started this blog) in well over a year. I do play Blood Bowl sometimes and I would love to get other skirmish/tactics type games into my routine, but most of my gaming now comes from boardgames and rpg groups with friends. Of course there are minis in all of that too and I still get to paint stuff and make models which is something I enjoy too. If I could change one thing I think it would be the idea of "balanced" competitive games and what that mindset generally does to games and gaming culture. I wish people used their imagination more often and remembered that games are for fun. While I used to be far more competitive I have certainly mellowed with age and now I just try to enjoy every gaming opportunity for what it is - a time with friends playing games and having fun.

  3. What is best in life? - This seems like a leading question... I'll answer this with my favorite R.E.H. Conan story which is a two way tie between "Red Nails" and "The Tower of the Elephant". Also pizza is pretty rad...

  4. Do you want to live forever? - Alright. I'll answer your Conan quote and question with another Conan quote. "My child, you have come to me my son. For who now is your father if it is not me? I am the well spring, from which you flow. When I am gone, you will have never been. What would your world be, without me? My son."

  5. Fame or fortune? - Well I suppose that depends on what I am famous for! Money is not something I strive for though I do appreciate the security of having enough so that I don't have to worry about where the next meal is coming from. I also unintentionally break things a lot so that costs money. I am bad at these kinds of questions. What if my fortune was in boardgames? Yeah! That I could get behind.

  6. What miniature are you most proud of having painted? - I love all the minis I have painted but I find that I am often most proud of the ones I have gifted to friends. Something about giving away my time and effort and love in miniature form makes me feel good. Something to be proud of? Maybe...

  7. How do you deal with burn out? - I assume this question is in relation to painting and gaming? I don't get burnt out on games. I have a crazy high tolerance for gaming. I am often the one who wants to keep playing in the RPG session after 5 or 6 hours have gone by. I am often the one looking for those long drawn out tabletop or boardgame sessions that last all day. So in gaming it is not something I have experienced yet. In painting and modeling I try to have multiple projects going on that I can bounce around between as inspiration strikes. Sometimes I get stuck in one project and work on it without anything else taking up my time but that is rare. Also knowing when to stop is a crucial skill. Its not good to push through something if you are not enjoying the process. Live in the moment and enjoy the time you have to paint and be creative or find something else to do that doesn't add anxiety or stress to your life.

  8. Why is a raven like a writing desk? - Who knows!? Ask the raven...

  9. Star Wars or Star Trek? - Neither. I am much more of a comic book nerd. When Star Wars was a big thing (as a child of the 80's) it brought me nothing but shame. I was too poor to see the movies, too poor to have the toys, and too poor to have the clothes. I read the books before I saw the original trilogy because I could get them from the public library. I never really got into Star Wars and the direction it has taken just makes me even less interested. I did see plenty of Star Trek reruns on tv when I was young, and Star Trek TNG was of course a part of my 90's youth, but overall it never captured my imagination the way old kaiju movies or comics did. Now GODZILLA on the other hand....

  10. If you could only buy from one miniature company from now on, which one would it be? - One run by my friends who have the skill and talent to make amazing custom pieces for me for anything I am looking for. They are extremely talented and affordable and their minis are of superior quality in every aspect.

  11. What is your favorite take out? - I cook a lot. There is a thai place here in my town called Bangkok Flavor which has some pretty tasty noodles and they make their stuff nice and hot which I always appreciate. 
There you have it! If you found yourself in my list of 11 blogs to receive a Liebster please answer these same questions (or something similar that you want to answer) in a blog post of your own. Of course participation is voluntary but it would be cool to see what you come up with and its nice to build community our here in the wilds of the internet... so... get to it!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Progress Report 5/12/14 - Bangin' heads and balls.

Back home after a fantastic one day Blood Bowl tournament at Headbangers Ball IV. This year the event was held at Draxtar Games in Batavia/Aurora Illinois. Cool store with lots of gaming space and a healthy mix of tabletop games, card games, board games, and miniatures/painting supplies. 

The tournament ended up being a 3 round event due to a change in schedule (store opened later than originally anticipated) but I was fine with one less game (having to drive 3 hours there and 3 hours back makes for a long day). 

Played 3 great games of Blood Bowl against 3 fantastic opponents. I brought out my Ogres with a roster that looked like this...


Ogre - Block, Sure Hands
Ogre x 2 - Block, Break Tackle
Ogre x 3 - Guard
Snotling - Leader
Snotling x 5
Rerolls x 2

First round I went up against the foul forces of the Chaos team known as Feel The Noize coached by Sickness. We had played once previously at ZlurpeeBowl 8 when I had a team of all Zombies. This time around our teams were a bit more evenly matched. Game began with the Gore Grinders receiving the ball only to stall out on the line after crashing into a wall of Chaos Warriors. While the Ogres kept their wits about them (very few Boneheads) they didn't manage to break armor or inflict any KO results in their drive to score. After 7 turns of bashing helplessly into one another the first casualty of the game was scored by a Double Skull result thrown by the Noize Minotaur who killed himself on the outstretched first of a nearby Ogre. Hurr hurr hurr...  Second round was a bit more bloody with the Noize bringing the noise to the Gore Grinders in an attempt to score for the win. After much smashing and crashing about 3 more Noise players wound up dead while the tricksy snotlings of the Gore Grinders managed to hold up the Chaos offense by throwing them into several moshpits on the pitch. Final score was 0-0 with 4 casualties for the Gore Grinders. 

Second round saw the Gore Grinders matched up with the veteran coach BCH with his brand new Orc team here known as the War Pigs. Once again the Ogres received the opening kickoff and proceeded to bash quite a few Orcs off the field but failed to inflict any casualties until after losing one of their own Ogres to a Black Orc block. The Ogres returned the favor and crushed the head of the offending Black Orc then proceeded to hand the ball to a snotling for their first score of the day on turn 8 of the first half. The War Pigs returned fire with a quick score on turn 3 of the second half allowing the Gore Grinders a chance to score for the win on turn 8 of the second half. After a daring Ogre dodge and pass through traffic the ball was dropped by the receiver who was just squares away from the end zone. Final score was 1-1 with 1 casualty for the Gore Grinders. 

The third and final round pitted the Ogres against the recently returned Necromantic forces of the Nawlin Nightmares coached by Darkstar70. Darkstar70 and I have played a few times, most notably in a Nurgle mirror match during Chaos Cup 2012 where he managed to out gross me for a win, and he is always good for a fun game. This time the Ogres kicked off to the Necromatic Nightmares from Nawlin but managed to draw the ire of a very judgmental referee who proceeded to eject any player after they rolled doubles on any injury roll (just like a foul). This left both teams frightened to make any blocks but the Nightmares decided to give it a go and quickly lost one of their Wights to a successful block on a snotling who was stunned in the process. Happy with this trade the Ogres let the Nercomantic Nightmares score quickly on turn 3 in hopes of driving away the eagle-eyed referee so they could get back to bustin' dead heads. And bust them they did! After a few stumbles, and turns spent staring at shiny rocks on the ground, the Gore Grinders came on strong and quickly sent 2 zombies to their final-final reward. While the Nawlin crew did crush a few snotlings underfoot they were unable to keep the Ogres from rolling forward and making a score after a daring Ogre dodge into the end zone. The second half brought more ball flopping madness with both teams positioned to score but ultimately failing to do so when it counted. Final score was 1-1 with 4 casualties for the Gore Grinders. 

With a final result of 0W-0L-3T the Gore Grinders brought home the War Pig casualty award after choosing not to take the Iron Man Best Defense award with only 2 TD allowed all day. A fantastic trio of games with a fantastic trio of coaches and nothing but fun, metal, and laughs to top it off. Can't wait for next year! 

Me with the War Pig skull trophy.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Special edition of The Grind - Blood and Balls to the Walls (Bloodbowl Tournament edition).

Just a quick plug for my weekly metal radio show The Grind. Tonight on The Grind I will be broadcasting a special edition of the show inspired by Blood Bowl for Headbangers Ball. Songs about metal, blood, balls, death, and the power of the SKULLS. Tune in at 11pm EST to WIDR fm at 89.1 in the Kalamazoo area or online at PLAY IT LOUD

Monday, May 5, 2014

Progress Report 5/5/14 - Making It In May.

I am back! Spending a little more than two weeks on the road was not terribly good for my psyche and certainly not good for the progression of the various miniature projects I was working on. Fear not! I spent some time yesterday and today getting things going again. And here I have photographic evidence! 

First up... this converted Ogre Maneater is taking shape nicely. Just need to connect a chain from his hook-blade to his gutplate and get to priming! 

Nevermind that bit of dog hair... damn hairy bastard gets it all over the place. I am lucky there isn't more on my painting desk! The idea behind this Maneater is a sort of Giant rider/hunter. He uses his armored arm and chained weapon to hitch a ride on a passing Giant before climbing up and working with other Ogres to bring him crashing down! That is why he has some pokey bits on his back so when the Giant reaches for him he can duck down and stab it in the hand. It works sometimes...

Next up we have all of the Deadzone Rebs force I received in the KS. Working to have these painted up for ZlurpeeBowl weekend when I will be participating in a big Deadzone game with 7 other players (2 for each faction). Nevermind that I haven't played the game yet... that is just a small detail! First up I need to get all of these painted. 

These minis were a huge pain the arse to clean up. The mold lines are some of the worst I have ever seen on a plastic or resin mini. Eventually I kinda gave up and just went for the minimum acceptable level (for me). Some of the aliens were kind of a guessing game with parts too. On a scale of 1 to 10 for overall assembly I would give these guys a 6. Joints didn't fit cleanly without trimming, then they left gaps, mold lines right down the middle of faces and small details, and as I started basing them I noticed big gaps in the hole left for the mini to fit into. What a pain... 

This week I will be playing in Headbanger's Ball IV the annual metal themed Blood Bowl tournament in Illinois. Feeling the Ogre love right now (perhaps it is all the talk of bringing the Bellower back over at the Stronghold) and just want to get some fatties on the table. Plus what is more metal than a fat cannibal who loves hitting things and collecting bones?!