The Elder Thoughts

RPGs, miniatures, books and other rants

Space Hulk Deathwing, Deus Ex Mankind Divided & Fallout 4

I'm lagging behind my proposal of painting more, but I cannot fight arriving tired from work. Tired enough to prefer not to paint, but not so exhausted to leave the computer out, so I've been playing some videogames as of lately. Related with this blog usual topics (RPGs, Warhammer, etcetera.), I've played three games.

Space Hulk Deathwing screenshot

First and most interesting to me, Space Hulk: Deathwing, an FPS in the line of Left4Dead or Warhammer: Vermintide, both with singleplayer and cooperative play. This has been the big revelation for me: I preordered it due to a discount, and while it is true that performance-wise it needs some fine-tunning (lags when there are too many enemies at once even with a high end 3D card), it still looks awesome and the developers and designers must be fans of Warhammer 40,000 because the scenarios, lore and details of the maps are simply amazing. It won't please everybody, but I loved it and just finished the campaign, so I'll now try multiplayer before another pass to try to obtain all relics and read all logs.

Then, I also recently finished Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, new entry in this saga and the second game since Square Enix reboot. I did loved the previous game (Deus Ex: Human Revolution) because of how much it redefined the original game in such a pleasing way, so maybe I had too high hopes for this new entry. While certainly it is a good game, it has two issues for me:

  • It is very very similar to previous one. This is good but also bad, as there are not many surprises here
  • The story and some secondary characters sometimes feel cut, uncomplete, as if fragments were left for DLCs/expansions. I don't own any DLC so is just a theory, but I felt when I finished there were a bunch of unclosed or unsatisfying "branches"

It is also very demanding regarding 3D power, and while the scenarios are soo beautiful and insanely detailed cyberpunk cities, sometimes really gets sluggish.

And lastly, my most mixed feelings go to Fallout 4. After more than 70 hours on Fallout 3, all its DLCs and some custom mods, I was so happy to have a new entry and truth be old, I've grown tired of it even before finishing the main story arc. Yes it has settlements and NPCs inhabiting them; yes you build from furniture and food to weapon and armor modifications; yes the map is big and more detailed and alive and full of missions; yes everything is prettier and more realistic. But it all feels yet quite similar to Fallout 3, as a mixture of mods with a graphics bump and some (a bit dull so far) story of a lost child and you of course frozen in a vault for some years and then waking up. I will come back to it in the future to play more and try to finish the plot, but it broke my expectations on the wrong side.

Maybe I'm just growing tired of playing same sagas and need to switch to new IPs with unkown settings and new lore, but it's getting dissapointing playing new entries of existing game worlds...

Book Review: The Art of Mass Effect

The Art of Mass Effect book cover

Reordering my books I found and re-read The Art of Mass Effect, released on 2007 just after the first videogame in the Mass Effect universe.

Along its pages we'll mostly find colour illustrations, a few pencil sketches and some CGIs and actual game screenshots. There are some "multi step" drawings (from pencil to final results) but not too many. The main themes are scenarios, ships/vehicles and characters.

Being an art book not much else can be said. If you love the Mass Effect universe and lore this is a great source of inspiration. The first game, despite its defects, was a great experience for me and even now I think is the best one regarding story (the series went more into action although the visuals got really amazing), and this book evocates those experiences.

Fans of the game and people seeking really cool sci-fi drawings will find here what they seek.

Thousand sons, Ahriman and Magnus the red arrive

It seems that all rumours and analysis of the teasers were right, and we have a big Thousand Sons update! More especifically:

  • Magnus the red, as previously seen over the internet
  • Ahriman new awesome mini (on the flying disk!)
  • Rubric marines AND terminators
  • Exalted sorcerers
  • Tzaangors
  • Wrath of Magnus book, another narrative campaign like Curse of the Wulfen
  • New paints (2) and sprays (5)
  • Thousand sons dice

As can all be seen in this "summary" trade poster official image (click on the image to open it full-size):

Trade poster with all new releases for 19th Nov 2016

Source: Games workshop retailers website (link 1 & link2)

Comic Book Review: Neverwhere

Neverwhere comic book cover

Disclaimer: I haven't read the original Neverwhere so I can't compare.

Neverwhere is a comic about a normal guy, with a normal, boring life, that by chance meets Door, a girl trying to escape from two killers who have assassinated her family and are searching for her, and that is able to open doors between the "normal" world and other in which other rules are at play. Their life will never be the same again as they try to find who and why is trying to kill Door, gathering some help.

A curious reading, the drawing is ok, the story has some twists and (quite some) violence, but in general it didn't "clicked" on me enough to feel it was a pleasure reading. I'll be passing it to some friend because is not a comic I'll go back anytime soon.

September 2016 Status Update

This past months I've been publishing almost only comic and book reviews, but I am actually doing more things related with miniatures and RPGs. First of all, I've been playing videogames more frequently; Steam sales and offers plus some awaited releases made me spend most spare time either reading or playing. Now that I've finished some games, I'm slowing the pace as I want to do more things, but my currently installed games say a lot about what I'll focus on. As can be seen in the following picture, I bought from an offer the Warmachine Tactics videogame, I was curious and I always welcome turn-based strategy games... but I haven't yet tried it so can't say how good or bad it is.

Currently installed Steam videogames

I still have some games pending finishing, including some really long ones like Pillars of Eternity, Wasteland 2 and Grim Dawn, but no need to hurry. I'm focusing one or two non-GW games at a time only, and sometimes I throw into the mix an arcade or console game. Lately Games Workshop is doing a great job on PC regarding licenses, and I've deleted from my PC classics like Space Marine or Dawn of War II, both of which I've finished multiple times, to not overflow, but I really like having so many options to play digitally. I've also preordered the incoming Space Hulk: Deathwing and will do the same with Dawn of War III as soon as it is possible. Exciting times ahead!

Regarding miniatures, I've assembled every pending miniature I had and base primed a lot, but didn't painted much until recently. Now I am painting, mostly:

  • Imperial Knight: Only remains a few details and the base decoration (dead chaos space marine bits) and the decals
  • Rogue Trader era Space Marine: I found this miniature ordering an old box. While it is hard to highlight it with my crappy skils and the mini's lack of detail, I'm working on it
  • Nagash: A while after it came out, I bought the new awesome Nagash figure plus some undead warriors to decorate the base, but it was waiting (not even fully assembled) for me to decide to paint it. I started last week by priming it and right now I'm paiting the spirits, but my goal is to focus on fully painting it before starting with another mini. And without taking months to do it.

Rogue Trader Space Marine WIP

I might also retake painting Necrons, as they are quite easy and fast to do, but not until the lord of the undead is done. And about other miniatures than Games Workshop's, I finished painting two small lead witches as a small gift for my girlfriend, one green and one violet. Nothing impressive but was good for a change.

And that's mostly all, I keep reading but right now still going through a lot of pending comics before retaking Horus Heresy novels.

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