Thursday, October 18, 2012

Video Games vs Hobby Time

A couple of turn-based video games released this month have severely cut into my hobby time.   I am not really a console gamer anymore, but I always am on the lookout for good strategy games for my PC.  I recently picked up XCOM:Enemy Unknown and Blood Bowl:Chaos Edition for my PC.  Miniwargaming still has an edge over video games with direct social interaction, but the strategic side of the virtual battles have come a long way.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown 
For those who don't remember, the original XCOM was rated one of the best video games of all time.  It was a brutal strategy game that puts you as a commander of an elite strike force entrusted with defending earth against alien attackers.

1994 State of the Art: Can't believe how many hours I played this...
Unfortunately, after this groundbreaking game, the franchise went off into the weeds with usual sequels and eventually faded into obscurity.   The updated version goes back to the original theme with all new spiffy graphics and game play.

Squad movement maps showing cover locations
The movement and shooting mechanics are really cool in this game.    I can't recommend it enough if you like controlling guys (and gals) in power armor fighting aliens in a turn-based environment.  There is even a multi-player mode that I have not even tried yet.

Really good graphics - Glad my video card is only one year old
There's already some rumors on gaming forums of people working on 40k themed skins/modules for this game.  I can see it working very well.  5 out of 5 Stars

Blood Bowl:Chaos Edition

The latest release for the Blood Bowl PC games adds three new races, one new arena, and a new single player game world cup mode.   Fortunately, the price was reasonable ($10) if you already owned one of the prior editions.   I really enjoy Blood Bowl and this game recreates the table top experience very well.  4 out of 5 Stars

Yes, you can now have a Bloodthirster lineman
The three new teams are a nice addition bringing the total to 23 options for players.   The AI has not improved any and the graphics are the same as before.   The real joy of this game is playing online with real live opponents.  I just joined a league with a group of out of state friends who play the table top version as well.

Hopefully I will get a balance soon between PC gaming and Miniature Hobby time. Michael has thrown down the Fantasy "hobby" gauntlet with his Beastmen painting pledge.   I plan on making a pledge of my own for my Dark Elves soon.   Just need to squeeze in one more mission in XCOM first...


  1. I remember XCOM. Great game. might need to check this out.

  2. I spent countless hours playing XCOM. I'll have to look it up!

  3. Console gaming season is coming up... must get Necrons assembled and painted... before the tide.

  4. XCOM was a more modernised (At the time) remake of one of my all time fav games, Laser Squad that was available on the Sinclair Spectrum back in the 80's. Prefered Laser Squad to be honest, but this new XCOM sounds rather cool.