The Singularity War

After millenia of monitoring, analysing and cataloguing every known alternate reality in existence, the Primal being known as Kronus has had enough.

The constant revisions of existing universes as they experience ‘events’ that rewrite their history and reality, the almost infinite variations caused by the tiniest variance from the ‘Prime’ reality, the endless costume changes…it has become TOO much.

Order needs to be restored.

Utilising his vast intellect and extensive knowledge of quantum mechanics, Kronus has designed a machine – The Singularity Engine – which will compress every reality currently in existence into a single cohesive whole.

Billions will die, but Kronus believes the end justifies the means.

However, to complete the Engine, he requires artifacts of power from across the Multiverse.

As he cannot act directly in each reality, he plans to recruit a variety of catspaws to retrieve them for him. The promise of wealth or power will be enough in most cases, but those who think of themselves as ‘heroes’ may require subtle manipulation to unknowingly act on his behalf.

And there exists the risk that those who consider themselves guardians of their respective realities may discover his plans and try to stop him, so they will need to be targeted and removed from the equation.

The countdown has begun...

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Turn and Face the Strange…

As what ‘free’ time I’ve had over the past few weeks has been dedicated to securing future employment, with a few side treks into the Land of Mists, I’ve not really had the opportunity to spend any time on ‘proper’ hobby-related pursuits. Which explains the lack of posted content.

However, it has given me time to consider the future direction of the Buffet.

It has become clear that the false starts and changes of direction regarding the proposed Age of Unreason project mean that, as they used to say in the Grolsch adverts, “It’s not ready yet!”

So, rather than continuing half-arsed and without everything I need to fully realise this project (due to lack of resources at present), the Age of Unreason is being shelved for the time being.

But if there’s not going to be any Age of Unreason content, what can you expect instead?

Well, having reviewed my collection of terrain and miniatures, it occurred to me that the majority of it relates to superhero gaming…yet I’ve never published a superhero AAR.

My Way of the Crow rules were specifically designed and play-tested with this type of gaming in mind. But whilst the Clown Gang did surprisingly defeat the nefarious forces of Doktor Reich and his super-Nazis, stuffing Aryan head-first in a dumpster and the Black Pharaoh proved to be more than a match for the original line-up of the Liberty Force on his own, only myself and my play-testers were witness to these battles.

I have approximately 150 costumed heroes and villains, most of which are unique characters to my own superhero universe and most of which ARE fully painted. Add a good handful of Marvel, DC  and Eternian heroes, and a few ‘Forgotten Heroes’, and I have rather a large roster of characters who could take part in a dimension-hopping, multiversal crossover ‘event’ on an epic scale…

Something like this:

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Or maybe this;

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Or even this:

Image result for he man vs superman

But obviously waaaaay cooler and more Jez.

So, that’s what I’m going to do.

Join me next time, as the countdown to The §ingularity War begins…

Age of Unreason – Fun with Flags

The problem with the Ravenloft campaign setting, from a wargaming perspective, is that whilst it provides a wealth of detail to enable a DM to craft suitably chilling adventures to challenge a group of role-players, if you want to engage in a skirmish between the soldiers of Falkovnia and one of the neighbouring Domains you run into a few issues.

Wargaming is both a physical and visual medium, wherein the opposing forces usually have a distinctive look or uniform to differentiate the troops on either side. Vague references to ‘the crest of the von Zarovich’s’ or militia wearing ‘the Dilisnya colours’ are all well and good, but without a physical description or definition of what these actually are means that the budding wargamet doesn’t know what colour to paint their uniforms or what banner they fight beneath.

So, in order to field military forces for what are, effectively, ‘Imagi-Nations’, you have to resort to some in-depth research…and a bit of creative licence.

In other words, you make it up.

Now, as I have a smattering of knowledge regarding heraldic design, I do have a slight advantage in knowing the ‘correct’ colours, metals and furs to use, along with the official terminology for the objects and creatures that are commonly used.

However, whilst my artistic skills aren’t too bad, the prospect of coming up with and illustrating twenty individual coats of arms for the nations of the Core, along with uniforms for the dozen or so Domains that have standing armies, was somewhat daunting.

So I decided to cheat.

After a bit of Internet searching, I found an online coat of arms generator that not only has the correct tinctures of traditional heraldry, but also has a library of the majority of the divisions and charges commonly used. For a glossary of heraldic terms, I recommend http://www.heraldsnet.org/saitou/parker/Jpglossa.htm which should provide nearly everything you need to know about heraldry in an easily searchable format.

However, to actually create your coat of arms, go to the ‘Uplink Heraldry Creator’, which can be found here.

Click on the button “Create Coat of Arms” and away you go. It’s pretty intuitive and selecting specific ‘charges’ (i.e. objects or creatures) does give you multiple options, such as whether the lion is rampant or passant.

Once you’ve finished, you can save the completed coat of arms as a PNG file or a PDF and then do with it as you wish, such as uploading it to your blog, like so;

So, above is the coat of arms of the nation of Falkovnia, the official ‘blazon’ (i.e. description) of which is;

Argent, an eagle displayed sable armed and crowned or.

And now I have the coat of arms, I know that the uniform of the Falkovnian army will be black, yellow and white and can paint my troops appropriately.

So, should you wish to provide a coat of arms for a particular lord, an Imagi-nation or even yourself, why not give the online generator a try. It’s easy to use, makes professional looking designs and is a lot of fun.

Until next time…

Late, But Not Forgotten

Usually around the beginning of July, once all entries for Forgotten Heroes have been submitted and the dust has settled, I provide an epilogue of sorts, giving an overview of how I thought that particular year’s event went…

This is that post.

I apologise for the tardiness of it, but as it was announced that the current contract I was engaged in had been cut short by six months and I would be out of work as of the 1st August, understandably my ‘free’ time has been spent trying to secure alternative (and more permanent) employment. This also explains why I’ve not commented on those blogs I regularly follow, so additional apologies for that too. I have been keeping abreast of what you’ve all been doing, just not really had the mindset to provide worthwhile comments.

So, as the third of what has now become an annual event, we’ve had an interesting project utilising some kind of alchemy in order to shrink resin models of Transformers, specifically the Insecticons (which as Tom Hanks will attest “the robot turns into a bug? That’s a great idea…”), an almost full collection of sculpted from scratch A.B.C. Warriors, a small-screen pulp flying ace and his dog, and the usual selection of four-colour heroes and villains who have been…Forgotten.

In some cases, they probably should have been, but we do love our lame and cheesy superheroes – the characters who are so bad they’re good, which is why this event is so much fun.

Now, as I hinted at previously, next year’s Forgotten Heroes will see a few changes to the rules, which I’ll explain now, but will reiterate prior to next year’s challenge.

Firstly, I’m changing the definition of a “Forgotten Hero” – this will now encompass ANY character, historical OR fictional, that has yet to have a decent figure made of them. Want to create the definitive Lord Soth from Dragonlance? Now you can. Want to do a diorama of Washington crossing the Delaware? No problem. Want to finally create either the Hypno-Hustler or Hellcow from Marvel Comics (the latter of which was referenced in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 2)? Go for it.

Image result for hypno-hustler

The second thing that will be changing is that you won’t be restricted to a specific scale. The figure (or figures) can be of any scale. If you fancy doing Dick Dastardly, Muttley and the Mean Machine in 20mm, so you can use with the rest of your Matchbox or Hot Wheels cars, now you can.

The other major change relates to registration. Whilst Roger administers the Forgotten Heroes site, this event was my idea and remains my baby. Roger is the Alfred to my Batman, if you like. So rather than Roger sending out emails to previous participants, in order to take part in next year’s event, you will need to register by commenting on MY blog – Carrion Crow’s Buffet – or emailing me directly. For those who have previously corresponded via Roger, he can provide this for you.

Not a particularly strenuous requirement and there will be a benefit to this, as the intention is provide ALL future participants in the Forgotten Heroes event with a badge (or button as I believe our American cousins call it) with the NEW Forgotten Heroes logo on it! Be the envy of all your friends!

Once I’ve finished designing it, that is…and no, it won’t be made from the “purest green”.

And, finances willing, there may even be some prizes too.

So, I wish to thank all of those who took part in this year in the spirit of the event and hope that you’re already planning what you’re going to do next year. If I can work out how to do it, you might even seethe Big Wheel next year…

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Until next time…