Thursday, July 24, 2014

Beer Review - Arbor Brewing Espresso Love Stout.

Reviews are piling up!! Gotta get back on the (at least) weekly beer review posting train...

Arbor Brewing Company - Espresso Love Breakfast Stout

Beer Type: American Stout - 7.50% ABV

Appearance: 12oz brown bottle and a fancy coffee/bubble letter logo on the label. Beer poured a pitch black with just a little head that faded quickly with no lacing.        

Smell: Coffee, malt, coffee, chocolate, coffee, prunes, coffee, brown bread.    

First Drink: Coffee up front followed by something a bit metallic tasting. Then comes the toasted malt flavors and the dried fruits.      

Mouthfeel: Smooth and easy going down.      

Last Drink: Finish has a nice warming alcohol to it now.            

Drinkability: A lot going on here for just a basic stout! Not sure if I would down this first thing in the morning... but I might!!            

Notes: Really enjoy the dark chocolate and fruit flavors and how the pair with the big coffee taste in this beer.        

Verdict: 4 out of 5. Good stout, good coffee beer, local to me, and made by good people. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Progress Report 7/21/14 - Finding the Path...

Back in the painting saddled after time away for gaming at Zlurpee Bowl and working on Mordheim Undead warband minis and a few new Pathfinder characters for a home game I am running with a few friends. Also picked up Dreadball for cheap so I will either start playing that game or maybe just build and paint up the minis to sell. We'll see.... in the meantime here is some progress!

Re-painted Dire Wolf
Dead and creepy
Warband's Necromancer
Wanted to keep the blacks black
Happy with the book and skull details
Look into their eyes
Halfling Rogue
Furry feet increase stealth
Dwarf Cleric of Sarenrae
Red and gold with a flaming weapon
Dwarf Druid
First try at a camo cloak
Gnomish Barbarian
Small but mighty
Start of a Deadzone Plague test color scheme
I kinda like the gross pink and green combo
Next up I have more RPG minis to paint including some additional commissions. Hoping to get some more Deadzone terrain built up too but this month is flying by! We'll see...

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Beer Review - Zlur-piss (Zlurpus 10th Anniversary Brew)

Jeffro's Basement - Zlur-piss Green India Pale Ale

Beer Type: Green American IPA - ??? ABV

Appearance: 12 oz brown bottle and with a label featuring a rampaging undead zombie halfling on it. Not much else going on. A QR code that takes you to someone flipping tables. Beer poured a foamy "mint flavored" piss green color that was both too dark and too light in color to be anything natural. Drank it out of a hot pink plastic cup so I have no idea what color it changed to under that foamy head (that never went away).

Smell: Hops and halfling piss.                

First Drink: Bitterness comes on strong quickly followed by something that can only be classified as "Dubinski DNA". 

Mouthfeel: Slick and a little oily but it has a bit of body too (or little bits of body anyway).           

Last Drink: The dirty feet flavor is really coming through now.          

Drinkability: I had one and I felt drunk as shit. Then I just felt like shit. The next day I couldn't move and I think I might have shat out a lump of green halfling guts.               

Notes: Super limited edition brew courtesy of Main Guy and Xtreme from the Zlurpcast in honor of Zlurpus and his 10th un-birthday.                 

Verdict: ??? out of 5. Cannot be classified. I'll let you know if a few years what the results of drinking this turned out to be.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Zlurpee Bowl Recap - Day 2.

Day two of the annual Zlurpee Bowl event began with very low energy. After staying up until the early hours of the morning playing Deadzone Coach Randroid wasn't quite on his toes going into the first game. But before we get into the Blood Bowl action lets take a little sidetrack into how the big Save The Cheerleader: Save Your Jobs - Deadzone 8 player game that was played on Saturday night. 

A view of the table (most of it anyway)

It was the first time I had the opportunity to play Deadzone (or any Mantic game actually) and it was a great introduction to their game. I brought a small 70 point Rebs force comprised of one Commander, 1 Terraton, 1 Yndij sergeant, 1 Yndij soldier, 1 Sorak, and 3 Humans. I had no idea what I was doing when building this list so I just went with the minis I liked the looks of most. It turned out to be an okay list but perhaps that was just a bit of luck?

The Randroid Rebs deployment in their zone
Terraton in the alley hiding from grenades
The objective of the game for the Rebs was to find the Cheerleader in the center of the board and escort her to one of two nearby safehouses on the board. Meanwhile two forces each of Enforcers, Marauders, and deadly Plague were also trying to reach the Cheerleader for their own mission (to kill, capture, or steal the POI). 

Commander overseeing the Terraton and sniping Plague
After several rounds of being trapped in an alley along the board edge the Rebs were able to breakout with their Terraton and crush the nearby Plague resistance (with a little help from the sniping Commander on top of a nearby building). While a few Humans died in route most of the Rebs were left unscathed while the other alien factions tore each other to shreds. At the end the Rebs found the Cheerleader and cleared their objective.

Eyes on the prize, the Terraton on the way to the Cheerleader
All in all it was a very fun time. Learning a new game in a competitive setting is always a little difficult but all of the other players (who had played previously) were very supportive and even gave me some tips and tactics as the game went on. Initial response to the game from me... COOL! Now I just have to find a way to work it into my local gaming rotation some how... 

So back to day two of Zlurpee Bowl X. If you missed day one you should probably read that recap here first. In short... the final day 1 results for the Zlurp Outcasts was a solid record of  2 Wins and 2 Ties with 0 Losses. Quite respectable and perhaps one of the better results I have had in a NAF event!

When the Fez attack!!!
Game 5 vs Coach theotherspencer's Orcs the 4D Shriners
Rising from their graves (and crypts, and burrows, and ditches) the necromantic Zlurp Outcasts took to the field against Da 40 Miners worshiping Orcs of the 4D Shriners. In perfect Blood Bowl weather both teams took to the field though the crowd was in favor of the Outcasts. If that wasn't bad enough the 4D Shriners lost a reroll to their piss poor coaching before receiving the kick from the Outcasts. Riding high on their most recent win the Outcasts quickly move in to push the orcs out of the way and gain control of the ball, perhaps a little too quickly, as werewolf Harry Hoyt falls after failing a dodge and lands directly on his claws then fails to regenerate from his self inflicted wounds. On Turn 3 the zombie Godric is obliterated on a blitz but pulls himself together but not before the 4D Shriners score their first touchdown. The Outcasts receive the return kick but the slippery hands of ghoul Damon Digger fail all attempts to pick up the ball and give the orcs the chance to push the defense. Desperate and out for blood the Outcasts come back with a handoff to werewolf Cliff Lancer in traffic who dodges away and pushes himself into the endzone for a Turn 5 score. The Shriners quickly get their revenge by kicking Cliff Lancer to death on Turn 8 of the first half.

The Outcasts lined up with what remained of their team to receive the kick and wight Curd Louis takes out his undead anger on a nearby Black Orc and crushes his skull on the line before failing to do the same on Turn 2 but takes himself out of the game in the process. Meanwhile the magnificent ghoul Shank Orloff grabs the ball and hides behind whats left of the necromantic line but fails to avoid the oncoming block of the Shriners blodging blitzer who knocks him over on a blitz and scoops up the ball to score on Turn 3. Now behind and down to 6 players the Outcasts line up to go for the tie. After some amazing sacrifices from the remaining wight and flesh golems Shank Orloff goes for the gold by blitzing the orc near the downed ball, killing him, then scooping up the ball to break away for the score. In a last ditch effort the Outcasts come together with a series of blocks, moves, dodges, and assists to knock off the blodging defender menacing Shank Orloff and giving him the chance to break away with two dodges and two GFI to score the tie. Instead he tripped over the goal line and killed himself to end the game on Turn 8.

Result: 2-1 Loss

As a side note this was a bit of a revenge match for theotherspencer who was beaten by the Zlurp Outcasts (the all zombie version) at ZB8. This was apparently quite scarring for him and he was very excited to have his vengeance on the zombies and other sundry undead of the Outcasts.

That is a lot of stars...
Game 6 vs BigSexy's Halflings (though mostly Zlurpee Star Players) Van Gor's Green Fairies
While not in the running for any particular awards the Outcasts decided to take up a grudge match by keeping it in the family and taking on BigSexy (theotherspencer's brother). After setting up, and receiving the kick off in perfect Blood Bowl weather, the Outcasts immediately went to work and began systematically removing each Star Player on the Van Gor's team. In the first block the flesh golem Franken flexed his stitched muscles and crushed the head of a nearby halfling. Not to be outdone werewolf Harry Hoyt slashed the star player Zorg to pieces on a blitz. Seeing blood the wight Curd Louis smashed a nearby halfling while fellow flesh golem Barry took the opportunity to destroy the ogre star player Zonk. In total the first 4 blocks resulted in casualties which were quickly followed up by another two casualties in Turn 2 including the star player Zlurpus (who regenerated). Meanwhile in the back field the ghoul Shank Orloff fails to pick up the ball on turns 1, 2, and 3 with a reroll before finally grabbing the ball on Turn 6 and breaking away to score on Turn 8 of the first half.

The sideline after the first two turns
Zorg, Zlurpus, and a couple halflings ready to take the win
Even with just a few halflings it's hard to get the ball
The second half continues with two star players left (the back from the dead again Zlurpus and the mostly naked Zorg) and a few halflings trying to tie up the game. Unfortunately for the Fairies the Outcasts were quickly able to take away the ball and kill Zlurpus (who regenerated again) again in the process. After scoring again on turn 3, 4, and 7 the game finally ends with Zorg standing up alone to the mass beating of the nearby Outcasts on the pitch.

This doesn't seem fair...
Result: 4-0 Win

So there you have it. 2 days of Blood Bowl left Coach Randroid and the Zlurp Outcasts with a final score of 3 wins, 2 ties, and 1 loss... the best result to date at Zlurpee Bowl for both. Total final standings can be seen here but for a quick "for fun" rundown here are a few other stats of interest:

Number of Zombie fouls - 4
Number of times killed by fouls - 2
Number of times the Claw skill was used - 3
Number of times the ball was dropped by Ghouls on pickup - 9
Number of failed GFI - 12
Number of failed dodges (with rerolls) - 8
Number of suicides by failed dodges/GFI/failed regens - 4
Number of failed regenerations - 10 (7 of which belong to werewolves)

Overall MVP (from CAS and TD) - #3 Werewolf Harry Hoyt (3 TD and 2 CAS)

Zlurpee Bowl X Recap - Day 1

Zlurpee Bowl X came and went and here is what happened on the first day of 4 games (or how I remember it anyway). Zlurpee Bowl X starring the Necromantic Zlurp Outcasts!

Game 1 on the line
Game 1 vs Coach Wifflebat's Norse The Helcardaxe Hellcats
The undead of the Necromantic Zlurp Outcasts were dying (har har) to take the field in their first game of the tournament against the frozen norse women of The Helcardaxe Hellcats. In perfect Blood Bowl weather the Outcasts received the ball, though during the kick off the jeering fans mocked both teams mercilessly, forcing both teams to lose their concentration (and thus a reroll) before the game started. While ready for anything the Outcasts weren't ready to lose both of their star werewolf players by Turn 4 nor were they ready to lose the ball and allow the Norse to score. They received the return kick only to lose a Wight on Turn 7 and with it their chance to tie the game going into the second half. In retaliation one enterprising zombie player known as Godric struck at a key moment and sent one of the Norse blizters to the apothecary (by kicking him in the face while he was lying down). 

In the second half the Outcasts press their offense with what remains of their team and stress out the Norse runner who drops the ball in the Hellcats backfield and allows the nearby Wight named Murry Kane to scoop up the balls and run it in for the tie on Turn 5.

Result: 1-1 Tie

Game 2 hot zombie on zombie action

Game 2 vs Coach Mini Xtreme's Zombie FtLotG Living Dead Boys
In a blast from the past (2012 to be exact) it was time for the Outcasts to go head-to-head with an all zombie force similar to the team as represented in ZB8 with its own all zombie roster. In perfect Blood Bowl weather the necromantic undead of the Outcasts received the kick off. While the zombies seem outmatched they manage to knock out a Flesh Golem named Barry in a GFI blitz by Zlurpus. In the resulting srcum the Outcasts star werewolf Cliff Lancer broke away and moved away from the slower zombies before dancing near the goal line for another 4 turns. The fans do not approve and heckle the Outcasts in the resulting Turn 8 return kick to the zombies causing them to lose their one unused reroll. 

The second half of the game sees the kick going to the Living Dead Boys who fumble the ball pickup and give the speedy werewolves a chance to blitz into the backfield before swiping the ball for another score (this one by #3 Harry Hoyt). Under the constant crush of undead flesh the zombie managed to knock down or knock out most of the Outcasts but the constant crash of werewolves keeps the score for the Outcasts creeping up steadily before the half ends. 

Result: 4-0 Win

Game 3 vs Coach Don's Khemri Crypt Kings
Taking on a fantastically painted Khemri team (who eventually won the Best Painted award for the event) the Outcasts prepared to take on the strength of the Khemri during a game set in perfect Blood Bowl weather. The Outcasts fans poured out for this one and they received the initial kick off before quickly dropping the ball on a failed pickup for the first... second... third... and finally fourth attempts before eventually grabbing the ball and running away from the Crypt Kings. Since they weren't able to keep the Wight named Murry Kane from scoring they settled for kicking the poor Flesh Golem Barry to death after he fails to regen from the foul. The Outcasts answer back by kicking to the Khemri for their one Turn 8 before an inspired kicking by Glavin the zombie to a downed Tomb Guardian gets him ejected from the game and leaving the Outcasts with just 9 players for the second half. 

In the second half the Crypt Kings receive the ball and form a slow rolling Tomb Guardian cage to crush the necromantic defensive line under their bandaged feet eventually scoring on Turn 6. After receiving the resulting return kick, and in an attempt to quickly score to win, the ghoul #10 Shank Orloff carries on in the great tradition of his people and drops the pickup of the ball. His teammate Cliff Lancer comes to the rescue by failing a dodge and killing himself. The rest of the game is just keeping the Khemri from scoring a win and trying not to lose any more players to the high strength threat of the Crypt Kings. 

Result: 1-1 Tie

The chaotic Pig Iron had lots of bacon and weapons
Game 4 vs Coach Ben's Chaos Pig Iron
In perfect Blood Bowl weather a wealth of Outcasts fans showed up to give the necromantic team additional fame for the initial kick off. Unfortunately it didn't allow for an increased ability of regeneration for werewolf Cliff Lancer who quickly fell victim to a Frenzied chaos warrior before being pushed into the equally frenzied crowd. He is quickly followed up by a nearby wight and then a zombie. The ensuing scrum ends with the ghoul Damon Digger failing a sprint towards the endzone and crushing his own skull on the pitch. The remaining wight Curd Louis tries to get to the ball but trips over the bits of skull Digger left behind and crashes nearby and allows Pig Iron to snatch up the ball for a pass. After dropping the ball on the pass the nearby Outcasts scramble to pick it up and score but only manage to fail their dodges and drop a pass of their own to end the half. 

After receiving the kickoff of the second half the Outcasts quickly sneak by the Pig Iron line allowing Harry Hoyt to score on turn 2 for the 1-0 lead. Chaos reigns on the return kick by crushing Harry before smacking a ghoul to death while the wight Curd Lewis snatches up a loose ball and breaks away to score on the final turn of the game. 

Result: 2-0 Win

So the final day 1 results for the Zlurp Outcasts was a solid record of  2 Wins and 2 Ties with 0 Losses. Wondering how day 2 treated the necromantic warriors in the battle for the Zlurpee fame? Check back for the stunning conclusion!!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Zlurpee Bowl X Tournament Pre-recap.

While I initially intended to blog about the event as it was happening (and fresh in my head) the hotel wi-fi conspired against me (or perhaps it was blogger) so you'll have to settle for a couple post-event recaps dredged from my soggy brains after 2 days of almost non-stop gaming. 

Another year and another Zlurpee Bowl event is done and dusted. I wasn't able to attend ZB9 due to a scheduling conflict at work so I was really excited to make it to the 10th annual Zlurpee Bowl tournament this past weekend July 11th through 13th. While the actual Blood Bowl event was only on Saturday and Sunday we started the weekend of gaming off right... with pre-game games and drinking at Xtreme's home on Friday night. 

Death Roller racing in the dungeon courtesy of flyingdingle
After the initial shots of tequila and pre-game beers were settled we got into a few games of Lunch Money and Let's Kill before celebrating Zlurpus and his 10th annual un-birthday with cake. 

While I left my Gnoblar Death Roller at home (which was a bummer) I was able to find a suitable replacement in one Sasquatch mini painted up by Xtreme and took the field against 7 other opponents (some of which were also assorted big guys in the place of Death Rollers). The game was played to 2 laps and my insane strategy of 2 to 3 GFI per turn paid off big as I quickly took the lead and almost lapped the rest of the competition. Instead of letting me win and ending the 2 hours of game we had already played the sneaky Siggylama (of the Siggylama show fame) decided it was a better strategy to drive backward on the track and take me out on my way to victory.

While he wasn't successful in blocking me he was successful in forcing me to make 4 GFI (on a 2+, 3+, 4+, and 5+) to get his Snow Troll out of the way and sneakily iced up the track on the way in for the 4th GFI causing me to roll a 4 on a 5+ roll for success. After spinning out and crashing I had to start the final lap back at the start of the race facing the other competition who were just starting their second laps and quickly crashed into a wall and was out of the race for good. Not sure who eventually won as I got sucked into a world of King of Tokyo before heading back to the hotel to grab a few hours of sleep before the big event on Saturday.

Would the Zlurp Outcasts make it past table 20 in the event? Who would regret playing me only to have their game re-imagined in my head and put down to blog "history" for later reference? Check back later for more ZBX tournament recap to come.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Headed off to Zlurpee Bowl X.

Hello! Goodbye! Headed off to Zlurpee Bowl X tomorrow morning where I intend to spend 3 days gaming away with nerd friends from all over. Blood Bowl in the tournament, some post Saturday Deadzone action, and who knows what else will be played in between!? 

For those curious I will be bringing the Zlurp Outcasts... my Necromantic team that I painted and have yet to play in any event aside from the first Dog Bowl (where they performed terribly and I lost every game I played if I remember correctly). This time around I hope for 1 W/3 T/1 L for the overall record but I would be happy with anything really. Just going to get some Blood Bowl in and have fun playing with my painted minis. 

Here is the roster I will be bringing along...


Werewolf x 2 - Block, Dodge
Wight x 2 - 1 Guard
Ghoul x 2 - Wrestle
Flesh Golem x 2 - Guard
Zombie x 3
Reroll x 1
Fan Factor x 3 

Perhaps I will attempt my first ever "post event day" updates and see how that goes?! Either way expect some sort of recounting of my experience at the 10th (10!!) Zlurpee Bowl event.