What a wild three years I’ve had over the last 12 months. Like many, I’ve been struggling through the pandemic, being in lockdown and unable to game and seeing disruption in many other aspects of my life. I’m grateful that I’ve remained employed and (relatively) healthy over the year and thought I’d take the opportunity to briefly (and randomly) reflect on the year before it fully closes out (hopefully without another horseman of the apocalypse appearing).
Frostgrave Immersion Tour
It’s hard to believe I was travelling through Estonia in February, but I’m very glad I decided to embark on the epic adventure that the trip was. I made several new friends, got to meet the designer of one of my favourite games and saw a part of the world I’d not otherwise have visited. That’s before I even consider the 10 rad games of Frostgrave I played over the course of the week and the delicious food and beer I consumed. If you get a chance to go on a trip with Geek Nation Tours, I highly recommend it, Teras’ passion for gaming and the care he takes in preparing the trip was outstanding.
I dived (face first) back into Necromunda in the second half of the year, as a lockdown project with bonus nostalgia trip. The more I dig into the game, the more I am frustrated by how the rulebooks are laid out and inter-relate. There is almost a requirement to own all the books, and finding specific rules and interactions is an exercise in frustration a lot of the time. That being said, it’s been fun to play a slightly chaotic game where I’m learning how things work as I go, and I still love the concept and models available. I’m hoping to play more in the new year, and already have Palanite, Delaque and Genestealer Cult gangs to work on, which have been and promise to be fun modelling and painting projects.
Marvel Crisis Protocol
I did find a new favourite game during the year, and whilst I didn’t get to play as much as I would’ve liked because COVID, I’ve loved the handful of games I did get in. The game has the benefit of having many of my favourite characters in it now, as well as having a crazy amount of tactical depth between roster selection, mission construction and tactics cards. Loomking forward to plenty more of this game in 2021.
After talking myself out of it plenty of times, I succumbed and purchased myself a 3D printer in December. It’s been a fun and frustrating experience (in equal measure), but I’ve been surprised at how ‘plug and play’ it’s mostly been, as well as how many problems I’ve had to solve – essentially it’s a new hobby in itself. I got an Anycubic Photon S, which has a large and active community online, luckily, so have found plenty of resources to help troubleshoot the problems I have encountered. I’ll write more about this topic in 2021 as I explore it and learn more.
I think 2020 has broadly been a blogging fail for me, with relatively few posts over the course of the year as I wallowed in COVID lockdown. This is my eighth and final post for the year, compared to 25 posts over the course of 2019. I think this tracked my hobby engagement and motivation over the year relative to last year, with limited gaming opportunities throughout the middle of the year and a corresponding lack of motivation to hobby much.
Like many people I’m glad to see the back of 2020. A year that started out marvellously for me, with a trip to Europe – making new friends and visiting old ones – deteriorated quickly when I got back as COVID drove lockdowns and a temporary end to gaming. At least I remained employed and relatively healthy over the year, whilst getting some hobby in. Here’s to a better year in 2021, with hobby and gaming aplenty.