Friday, July 23, 2010
This Week in 40K Podcasting – 7/17 – 7/23
This Week in 40K Podcasting – 7/17 – 7/23
So here we have yet another installment of This Week in 40K Podcast for the week that was, July 17th-23rd, 2010. This has quickly become my favorite this to write during the week. Something that was mention to me via email was that some of these podcast do have some harsh, adult language. So, please be advised, listen to these casts before you let your kids hear them! I have marked the podcasts with adult language Explicit.
Dice Like Thunder Episode 95 – Rating 4/5 **Explicit Language**
You’re home for all things AWESOME started off by poking some fun at yours truly! That’s right, the ‘ol EvilEd209 got mentioned less the 30 seconds into the first segment. I am a good humored and sensible person, and I love the guys and the show. And starting a weekly article that rates 40K Podcasts I realize is opening myself up for some pokes. So thanks guys for being the first to poke me… I mean.. um… you know I what I mean.
But to be clear for the readers, I am a war gamer and enjoy all of the games that DLT mentioned, however this segment is entitled this week in 40K podcasting, focusing on the 40K part, and the points they lost last episode were for the non-40K game talk. I have to admit, that each time you guys would mention Fantasy, I would smile! I felt like the star of the first segment. Thanks Guys! Don’t change a thing!
They went on to name the winner, David, of the Horus Hersey Board Game “Theme Song” contest, of which I am eternally jealous of and wish I had some musical talent, but I don’t. They moved on by mentioning a new London based 40K Based podcast, the Overloads (www.theoverlords.co.uk) which is gaining some attention. I will be adding them to my listening list and will critic as needed. In fact I missed them last week and will be adding them to this week’s segment to make up for it, sorry guys! They made mention of some of the home-brewed material that DLT has put out there for the fans. If you have not had the chance, check it out, they are worth it. I recommend the missions book, which I use on a regular basis. They also dropped a mention of Rankings HQ (www.rankingsHQ.com), for tournament players. I have not attended a tournament yet that has used it, but the season is still early.
Next up was a discussion on “Why 5th Edition is Not Awesome”. They discussed older codices being used in the new rule set, not all of the 5th edition codices being balanced with each other (hello Tyranid Codex), laughable FAQs and some of the standard arguments of no models for units with rules in the codex. Lastly they go over the craziness of the Blood Angels FAQ.
The second segment is the real jewel of this episode, an in-depth overview of the Assault Phase, continuing with their tips and tactics of the game as a whole. As a Tyranid player, this segment got a least three re-listens as the boys went over all of the nooks and crannies of the Assault Phase. They give you a ton of tips on how to dominate in the Assault Phase, or how not to be dominated, and what to watch out for. Very well worth it! They seem to subscribe to the same theory I do, if I roll a bucket of dice at you, even if you go before me, I still win! They even give the tactics of why NOT to shoot before you assault. They end it out with a list of great Assault units and how to use them. They are starting some threads over on their forum about great and horrible Assault units. Feel free to chime in; I know my 10 point homagaunts (Adrenal Glands and Toxic Sacs) will be getting a vote.
The last segment closed out with some shout outs, some other podcasts that hit on non-40K related material, and an Under Rated (no Over Rated this week) of Abaddon. The man is a god, deal with it. There is no rating for him! They reminded us of the “Name My Army” contest for Dave, firstname.lastname@example.org. Contest will run until the first week in August. And of course took one more jab at me before show’s end… making me smile.
Overall, a great podcast that ‘happened’ to mention me and the blog as a running gag! You would have gotten the 4 rating even with out it guys, great job, but thanks again and I hope I was fun to mess with!
The 11th Company Episode 26 – Rating 3.5/5
The Myrtle Beach Wild Bunch started off their podcast with a conversation on Tournaments, Comp systems, and house rules is reference to fixing the broken things in 40K. One of the things I liked about this segment is why it is in Tournament Play there is a “By The Book” feel to the rules, and that House Rules, Fixes, or FAQs are not permitted. I really do believe that it is possible to have the 40K community at large help to fix the broken or older codices to get them back to the competitive level, and they hit on this a lot. Personally I’d like to see Neil’s fixes for my beloved Necrons and see if they had play-tested it.
Next, they moved on to Pat’s Corner where he had an interview with Mike Collins, a member of Team Wales in the ETC. They talked about what armies the Wales Team will be bringing and their basic strategies. I think it is interesting that two teams in the ETC are bringing Necrons, with monolith spam of course. I also think it is interesting how the Europeans seem to feel that the United States might not be prepared for this tournament, and that they will not do well their first time out. And that they were building lists as if they were under some sort of comp system, and bringing weaker lists. I strongly disagree. With the team that we have assembled, I am sorry Europe, but these guys are going to do well and will bloody you’re noses. If they are not in the top 5 teams, I’ll be strongly surprised. I loved this interview because it got me all worked up over the ETC and I wish I could attend. I feel like a World Cup fan now! USA, USA, USA!
The next segment was a short unit highlight of the Termagant from the Tyranid Codex. Personally, I can not have a Termagant without a Tervigon, and they agreed, so to look at the unit alone is not a fair comparison. As I have noted in my review of the Codex, they are many synergies that make this codex work, and the Tervigon/Termagant combo is a must for my armies at least. Overall a good review!
The next segment was an interview with James Hakola, the owner of mrdandy.com and wargamma.com, websites dedicated to alternative models for 40K and other modeling needs. Both are great sites to find models that GW has not gotten around to making just yet. James gives a brief history of his model making career and how he got to where he is now. It was an interesting interview and gave out some good information on the “Battle Wolves”, an alterative model for Thunderwolves, where there is a great need for now. He also does “Drop Pods” for space aliens. Good looking model too! He finished up with the process of how the models are made.
The last segment is the first part of a two part Codex Countdown: Orks. The first thing I will say about this segment is that I did not care for the fact that it was broken up into two segments. I know, I know, I understand the argument that people put up there for short podcast vs. long podcasts. There are two kinds of podcast listeners, the ones who have the time to listen to a 4-Hour Megasode, and those who don’t. That some people like to burn podcasts to CD and listen to them in the car and 4-Hour episodes can not be done unless you edit them yourselves. But I do not have that problem and most people I know in the podcast community do not either. Most listeners have iPhones, or MP3 players that can handle a 4-Hour long podcast without any difficulty. So overall I was not happy to learn that this segment was being broken up into two pieces.
However, on with the review as is. I happen to be one of the people that believes that the Orks still or a top tier army and it was as if Neil had read my mind as he started the segment. Again, while some people might not agree with how the gang feels Orks are most effective, I happen to be an 11th Company believer. Long before I heard of this podcast, I was advising my Ork playing friends to play them basically just like they tell in this segment. And damn me for doing so, because hoard on hoard, Orks beat Tyranids.
Overall, it was another good podcast from the 11th Company. That broken up Ork segment has left a bad taste in my mouth but other then that a great cast. I am one of those people who loved 40K Radio’s Codex Overview segments and those were broken up over several shows, so I guess I can get used to this if this is their new format. We will see.
Imperial Vox Cast Episode 30 – Rating 3.5 /5 **Explicit Language**
Your light in the darkness of the Warp, this week the Bill, Tor, and Dawson do another one of their “Versus” podcast, Daemons vs. Space Wolves. They open up the show with their hobby and gaming talk for the last few weeks. They play-tested their 1,000 point tournament lists, and tried out the missions to tweak their armies based on the results. There is some real good Space Wolf tactical discussion in this section, so keep your ears pealed for it. This is usually my favorite part of their podcast, as you can tell these guys are hard tournament players and play each other just as hard at all times. Some of the best gems of the podcast can be found in the opening 30-minutes of the cast. This was no exception.
They move on to the next segment and the main portion of the show where they build one army to face another, in this case Chaos Daemons vs Space Wolves. Now, I would first like to say that I do not build my armies to beat any one other army; I usually build all-comers lists, tournament style, and so do most of the people I play with. So these podcasts where they take two armies and face them off and build lists to fight just each other I really do not care for. And the reason for this is: who build their armies that way, seriously? While these segments are loaded full of great tactics, and will give you a good overview of both armies, they are tactics for a very limited range vs such-and-such an army, and overall very narrow in their vision of other armies.
The guys do go into a great level of detail on both armies and if you play these armies I highly, highly recommend it. They have some great tips on what to build, how to build it and what upgrades to give each unit. Of course, if you see these armies at your local game store, I would also highly recommend that you take a listen just to get an overview of some of the big time units of each army and what you might see on the table. They even go as far to have a partnership with my man Phil Johnson (www.thebrokenforge.com) and have links to his retail site where you can buy the discussed armies at a discount. A very cool option!
So, while these “Versus” podcasts are my least favorite from an otherwise outstanding podcast, this one was still pretty good and earned a pretty high rating for me. The content on this podcast, even though on a subject that I do not agree with, is so outstanding that it makes up for my dislike of the segment. I play against both armies regularly and it was good to hear some of the things that I could be seeing in my next tournament.
They finish out the show with a great piece on Tactics vs. Strategy, and how your tactics should never supersede you strategies for victory. A really great piece and well worth the listen.
Good job guys, looking forward to your next podcast.
The Independent Characters Episode 8 Rating 2.5/5 **Explicit Language**
Carl and Geoff start off by saying that this week’s show really didn’t have much of a theme or structure, which is always something that makes me cringe to start off a podcast. They move on to what they have accomplished in the hobby in the last two weeks. They do go over some good hobby stuff on the GW washes, which I have used, use now religiously, and absolutely love. They do give you some pretty good painting tips, but I have always had an issue with painting tips by audio only. I really think these guys should put together a few YouTube videos on painting. They did go on to a few battle reports, starting off with Geoff’s Drop Pod Salamander’s list. They took the approach where Geoff talked about his hobby stuff then his battle and then Carl talked about his hobby stuff and then battles.
I think it would be better if the both talked hobby, and then they both talked battle reports. It would be more streamlined. That being said, Carl’s recalling of games that happened two weeks ago was poor, and ended up with of lot of “I’m sorry, I don’t even remember the result of the game, let alone what units my opponents used, but here is what I remember.” I can understand not being about to remember ever detail of a game, heck I have played so many that I can’t recall a vast majority of the games I have played. But I’d never use these games as ‘content’ for my podcast. If you intend to do a battle report on your blog or in your podcast, take notes! I do!
The next segment had two special guests, “Blitz” and “The Professor” hosts of the Battlezone Podcast (http://thebattlezone.libsyn.com/) who attended a gamer-get-together tournament with the crew and friends of the Independent Characters. They go in detail on the “Escalation” style tournament that they had just completed and the scenarios that they ran. The tournament sounded like fun and it gave me a few ideas on what to run next at my LGS tournament. The whole segment was basically one big battle report with some interesting conversation.
The last segment was basically what they hoped to accomplish in the next two weeks of hobby time. This is mostly regular stuff and nothing too exciting. They finished off the show with a review of their “Deep Strike” event, a gathering of 40K gamers. A really cool idea of getting together with the local gamer who they did not know and just hang out and talk 40K. Their review was all to brief for my liking and I wish they would have gone into much more detail. They also recapped their little mini-tournament one last time, and some other projects they had in mind. They posed the question if they should be 40K game only content or 40K universe. My vote… 40K Only Guys!
Overall a content light show, it was ok, but not their best work.
The Overlords Episode 4 – Rating 1.5/5
Okay, for starters I owe these guys an apology as their podcast was out last week and should have been reviewed in last week’s segment, but I just missed it. Sorry guys! Now, fair warning, these guys are in London so it will take you a few listen to get used to the accent if you’ve not heard it in 40K before. But it is worth it to get used to it.
Steve and Paul had a special guest in studio (or in the garden for this show) Annie on their show this week. And as we all know a female gamer is as rare as an albino unicorn, and thus, super hot! Mix in that British accent and, well, she worth a listen to at least!
They start off the show with some brief news, the guys have started a Twitter Account for the show, and so all interested parties should sign up. They posted their local gaming club’s rules on their site and they are available for download. They move on to some brief Fantasy news, which I could have done without. But they did not get into the game at all, just the templates and dice which or out which could be used for 40K. So no foul. They go on to some Forgeworld and Black Library releases, and the dry rumor mills. Everyone is waiting for Dark Eldar to be officially announced far as I am concerned. They do move on to a good topic about how GW waits until the last minute to announce their new model and army releases, while other companies have that as public knowledge well in advance. I happen to agree with the boys on this one and that GW really is running their release schedule a little too tight to the vest. They move on to a mail bag section and the first email they hit on was about their previous podcast’s sound quality. I couldn’t agree more. I know that they are just getting started so I usually cut some slack for the new guys on sound and content. That being said, I think they did a good job this week sound-wise and maybe they should tape in the garden more often!
They move on to the next segment where they talk about bringing new players to the game, and the “Fluff” or story player of 40K vs. the modeler or builder bring the player into the game. They interview Annie, an Eldar player, about how she got back into the game of 40K. She moves on to tell us why she chose Eldar over any other army in the 40K universe. The conversation moves on to their prep work for what sounded like an escalation league at their local Games Workshop store (I’m jealous BTW). They guys sound like they really have not delved into the competitive end of 40K too much, which they are aware of, and are worried about getting spanked in the league.
They move on to their last segment, the “flavors” of 40K, straight up rulebook 40K, Planetstrike, Apocalypse, Cities of Death, Spearhead and Battle Missions, or the expansion games to the base 40K. They go over their experience playing Apocalypse style games and how there has to be a lot of prep work done in order to make the game enjoyable. They mention their light contact with Cities of Death games, and how it changes the game mechanics back in 4th edition Cities of Death have made it into the 5th Edition game with line of sight and cover saves being as abundant as they are. They move on to some of the “Fluff” games that they had set up and some of the weird and fun games they had made up to play.
Overall, this show was really, really light on content. I know these guys are just getting started and are nervous when the mic gets turned on, so I am willing to see where the podcast goes. If I could offer up some advice to the hosts of the show:
“Your podcast has a great start, but you need to give us, the listeners, more reasons to want to listen to you each episode. Interviewing your buddies is okay, but how about going deeper into their armies, tactics, strategies, and fluff behind their army. You need to offer something that we want to hear. What makes a good podcast is doing something different, be original, give me some reason not to listen to something else. I wish you the best of luck!”
So, that is it for This Week in 40K podcasting.
Got a podcast all about 40K, or mostly 40K that I am not listening to? Let me know. I'll be happy to add you to my listening schedule! Disagree with my rating? Post comments for that too!