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16 Jan 2020

Bot War The Game from Traders Galaxy

Bot War The Game from Traders Galaxy

As I have some spare time I thought I would offer some thoughts in Bot War as a game. There is a fair bit of info in the game info section on the website about the game but i thought some if those points worth expanding on and reiterating.

Like all good games Bot War is quite hard to get a handle on game wise. There are three reasons for this -
1. The game core rules are simple. So simple a kid can play it.
2. The game uses some abstract concepts regarding models.
3. Multiple ways to win

Ill attempt to explain point 1 first.

The core rules use a few levers to make the game. This can be particularly confusing for new players regarding balance as there is more than just lateral play involved. Let me give an example -

Some may look at a stat card and think wow this model is really good for the points. But then find out in game that it totally failed. This is because the force was not designed around this character and it literally starved to death on the battlefield (not enough energy)

Energy management and list building is a huge aspect of Bot War. But energy and strategy ratings are even more important than points when it comes to selecting your force.

This is why Bot War is a supremely complex game. Yes kids can play the basic rules, but managing strategy rating and energy distribution is very difficult to get right. It means that for each activation phase you really need to have some kind of plan or foresight into what may happen. Including knowing when all your opponents models will activate.

2. Bot War uses abstract concepts that are not super common in other games. For example, infantry, bots, vehicles and even bunkers and other battlefield items all easily fit into the core rules and activations.

Only slight special rules and traits are required between a vehicle and infantry. Or bot and a bunker. This can sometimes be confusing for new players.

As the designer i see bots as the middle road. After all the game is bot war. So bots can do a bit of everything within the game. All bots will lean towards excelling in close attack compared to other model types. This is because bots have the ability to punch and kick things.

The other model types all specialise in certain other areas. For example infantry specialise in energy conservation. Dedicated flyers specialise in movement. Etc etc.

My prediction would be that the more skill playing the game the more your force would include specialised units such as infantry and vehicles.

I have now been playing this game for two years against Aidan Spittles and i can truly say that i have had some super enjoyable games of bot war.

3. Multiple ways to win. Back in my warhammer days i hated the feeling that it was impossible to win against some forces. In my game it is ALWAYS possible to win against any force. Obviously some will be harder than others. However usually the more powerful forces have in built achilles heels.
For example a battle that have a big tough guy we depend on a small bot or model Aidan and i call a battery. Kill the battery and the big tough guy starves his force.

Having taken many army types in bot war i now lean away from big tough guys. Yes they re scary but they are too vunerable to battery death in my opinion. Myself i always make sure i take a model to counter any batteries hising at the back of the board too.

In Bot war objectives and scenario rules matter. Like. A LOT. The scenarios are an essential balance for some forces. For example the new Beastlords will be super strong but very small in number. Without far superior numbers or by playing an objective game,players will struggle to win against them. Interestingly multiple close attacks are the way big scary bots are brought down.

This is once again an abstract representation that big bots are slow. Yes super powerful but they get overwhelmed but lots of smaller attackers.

So in summary i think it is quite difficult to get a real handle on Bot War until you play it a few times. There are a few battles on the Bot War youtube page. However players really need to experience all the thought processes you need to consider in this simple game.

I suggest if you are on the fence. Take the plunge on a starter and give it a few games with a regular opponent. The rules are solid.

Traders Galaxy

15 Jan 2020

12mm Achzarit APC from Butlers Printed Models

One IDF Achzarit heavy APC. Available in 6mm (1/285), 12mm (1/144), 15mm (1/100), 20mm (1/76) and 28mm (1/56).

The Achzarit is a heavily armored personnel carrier manufactured by the Israeli Defence Forces Corps of Ordnance.

The Achzarit is based on the Soviet-built T-54/T-55 tank, beginning with those captured from Arab armies during the Arab Israeli wars. The IDF took the old design, removed its turret, and modified the chassis for carrying soldiers by adding a troop compartment and rear door. The engine was made more compact and powerful, and other internal systems were upgraded. Reactive armor was installed over the original armored tank chassis. The APC was created in 1988.
 Achzarit

Achzarit picture 1

Achzarit picture 2

Achzarit picture 3

Achzarit picture 4

Pictures shown are for 15mm models

All models supplied unpainted, unbased and without crew (figures)

3D printed to order

Butlers Printed Models

Looking For Stockists from Traders Galaxy

Looking For Stockists from Traders Galaxy

Looking for Bot War stockists in -
Australia
Canada
Europe
Asia

Also looking for stockists on the East Coast USA and Northern UK

Traders Galaxy

14 Jan 2020

Deceivers Set 2.12 from Traders Galaxy

Deceivers Set 2.12 – The Builders – Pre-order – Released 15 January

Deceivers Set 2.12

Deceivers Set 2.12 picture 1

Deceivers Set 2.12 picture 2

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Deceivers Set 2.12 picture 5

Note: Orders are not shipped until all parts of the order are available

This set comes with enough parts to make 1 x Loader, 1 x Dumptruck , 1 x Dozer , 1 x Roller, 1 x Digger.

This is a metal multipart kit.  Superglue required for assembly (not included)

This set comes with 4 x 40mm round black plastic bases and 1 x 50mm black plastic base.

Traders Galaxy

13 Jan 2020

Longstride from Traders Galaxy

Sneak Peak Longstride from Traders Galaxy

Longstride

Longstride

Faction - VALIANTS
Earth name - LONGSTRIDE
Super Ability - RAM ATTACK
Earth Profession - BODY GUARD
Likes - ART AND NATURE
Dislikes - THE CHAOS OF CITY LIFE

Traders Galaxy

12 Jan 2020

Modern Buildings from Vital Ground Creative

WIP photos of some buildings for modern 10mm ( but could be useful from 1930s onwards) Buildings based on Settler Houses (social housing in Germany) These were built in the 1930s and are still standing (albeit modernised) in the Spandau district of Berlin.

Modular bases to keep them in place and allow modelling opportunities. They will be available soon with roads to space them correctly Better photos once finished (Scimitar recce tanks for scale)

Modern Buildings




Vital Ground Creative

Recovery from Traders Galaxy

Sneak Peak Recovery from Traders Galaxy

Recovery

Recovery

Faction - VALIANTS
Earth name - RECOVERY
Super Ability - RAM ATTACK
Earth Profession - Priest of the One
Likes - PEACEFULNESS AND
MEDITATION
Dislikes - CHAOS (Hotwheel’s temper)

Traders Galaxy

More New Deceivers WIP from Traders Galaxy

More new Deceiver Avaricon the greedy work in progress.

Avaricon

Avaricon picture 1

Avaricon picture 2

Traders Galaxy

Pendraken Plans for 2020

Pendraken Plans for 2020

Welcome to a new decade!  After a virus at Pendraken HQ wiped out the past 3 weeks we're back on track and looking ahead again!

We've got some big plans for the next few years so 2020 is going to be the 'Year of Getting Stuff Done!', getting the decks cleared a little so that we can push on into the open water beyond.  Let's have a look and see what's going to be happening at Pendraken HQ:

Greeks/Persians
Our first release of this year will be the Ancient Greek and Persian revamp.  All of the Greeks have been moulded and are ready to go, while the Persians just need production moulding.  The plan is to get that done over the next fortnight and have these ready for release before the York show (and before the price increase...!)

Price Increase
There's a small price increase coming on February 1st, more details on that here:

Revamped Samurai
Following on from the Ancients will be our revamped Japanese range, which was previewed here:  This new comprehensive range will be a huge improvement on the existing figures, and once we've got the Castle Arts buildings back into production alongside them, we should have the best Feudal Japanese offering in the 10mm market.  We might even have a look at some rules for the period as well...

TB Line
The gift that keeps on giving, we'll be trying to get the last two TB Middle Ages ranges back into production, with the Islamics and Mongols still outstanding.  Those should be completed by the summer, all being well.  The remaining ranges are all Ancients and are a slightly older sculpting style to the later figures.  These will probably benefit from some work to the sculpts themselves, making them a bit more detailed and better proportioned, so we'll be getting that done before moving to new master and production moulds.

Not-Kickstarter
We'll be running another Not-Kickstarter project around March/April time, to produce comprehensive Napoleonic Peninsular ranges covering the British, Spanish and Portuguese.  We're working on the range lists for this at the moment and we'll have more news once we're closer to launch.  Sculpting on these will take 3 or 4 months so we'd be looking to get them into production in time for Christmas.

Other Ranges
Looking forward to new ranges to be sculpted...
Crimean revamp - This will be our first range after / at the same time as the Peninsular stuff.  We were hoping to have started this already but the illness has scuppered our research time.
Napoleonic French Guard - These have been hanging around for far too long now so we'll definitely get them sorted out and released.  Timescales should be sometime after Salute, while the sculptor is working on the Peninsular project.
Post-1950 MBT's and trucks - Martin has been working on these over the past few months and we should start to see them soon.
Korean artillery - We're a bit behind on our plans here so we'll have a chat with the sculptor and see where we are with timescales.  We want to get these finished off so that we can move on to the WWII Italian artillery.
Fantasy - We've got a lot of Fantasy work coming over the second half of 2020 probably, adding some new Amazon and Ratmen ranges, while also expanding some of the other races and monsters.

SCW Supplement
This will be our first BKC supplement to cover the Spanish Civil War.  We'll have 20-30 army lists for the different factions, as well as some historically based scenarios as well.  We're getting closer to having this complete so we should be able to release it before Salute.

Korean War Supplement
Once the above is done, we'll be moving on to a Korean War supplement as well.  Both this and the above will be released as pdfs through Wargame Vault for a small fee.  Hard copies are not planned at this stage, but we can look at a print-on-demand service if there's enough interest in it.

BKC Online Army Builder
We've got a brand new army builder currently under construction, with a view to release around Salute time.  This new software will completely replace the old BKC Battlegroups software and provide more features for a lower one-off cost.  You'll be able to save, print and share your army lists, as well as convert them to a buying list for the Pendraken website Basket.  There may also be an option to store your current armies/units and then the software will be able to calculate which new items you need to complete a new army list.

For the longer term, this new software will be able to host multiple rulesets and lists so all of our future rules will be run through this same software.  We'll have more info on this as we get closer to launch.

Cold War Commander II
With BKC-IV complete and out there, Mark Fry has turned his attention to CWC-II.  The initial draft of the rules has been put together so we'll be checking that over before putting it out to a group of players for the first round of feedback.  A small group of people have been working through the army lists as well to expand the attack values into Anti-tank and Anti-personnel stats.  The plan for this rulebook will be to print the rules and scenarios into a hardcopy, while the army lists will be available as free pdf downloads through the Forum here.  This will allow us to update the army lists whenever we need to, without the need for additional errata lists or reprints.

Dungeon World
Another job that's been pending for far too long now, we'll finally get the Dungeon World rules revamped and get the Dungeon Sets back on sale.  We need to do some remoulding work on the monsters and furniture, as well as putting together some nice Hero groups, so this will all be a 2nd half of 2020 timescale.

Forum
Sadly the chap who looks after our Forum has been extremely busy with his day job for a long time now and hasn't been able to do the maintenance and upgrade work needed here.  Things like the apostrophe bug, new member registration, the order of the boards on the homepage being all scattered about, the newsletter function being broken, etc.  We need to transfer the Forum over to our own hosting account and then we can find a new web guy to take on the Admin of the site.  This is something I want done asap but our hands are tied until the existing webguy can transfer the domain/files.

Website Photos
With 1375 photos to be added to the website, we've still got a chunk of work ahead of us.  There is good news though as we've got several ranges away with pro-painters at the moment:
- The French-Indian Wars range is over with Kev Rouse in Hungary and should be back with us in the next few months.
- All of our WWII vehicles are with JAD Designs and he'll be sending them back up to us in batches.  The first to arrive was all of the Sdkfz 251's, which I'll be photo'ing later this month.
- The WWI British range is over with a new chap in Spain and will be coming back to us after Salute I'd expect.  We'll then be sending the Germans and French over for the same treatment.
- While that's going on, I've got all of the Dark Ages ranges blackwashed and ready to be photo'd later this month.  The Late Romans and ECW ranges will follow that, and then the GNW codes.

Minibits
On the Minibits side of things, there's not a lot planned at the moment.  We were due to do another 28mm modern Kickstarter but we lost our sculptor to the evil empire (!) and need to find a new one.  I've put that on the backburner for now and we'll start looking about in the summer I think.

We've got some new stuff coming from RedVectors though, including 28mm Wild West Wagons, 6mm Mono-rails, and then some WWII/VBCW buildings in both 20mm and 28mm options.

And that's about it I think!  There's no doubt a bit of optimism involved with a list of this size but with a larger team of people at Pendraken HQ now we should be able to move quickly through a lot of these jobs.  Let us know if there's any queries!

Forum Discussion
Pendraken Miniatures

11 Jan 2020

Price Increase - 1st February from Pendraken Miniatures

Price Increase - 1st February from Pendraken Miniatures

There will be a small price increase coming on 1st February, affecting the bulk of our infantry, cavalry and artillery packs, taking them from £5.25 to £5.50 per pack.  This adds a little less than 1p to an infantry figure, and just under 2p to a cavalry figure.  There will not be any price changes to our vehicles, WWII-onwards artillery packs, or our flagsheets.  Pricing on custom orders will also remain at the same rate of 20p per foot / 40p per mounted as well.

There will also be a small increase on the Vallejo paints, from £2.30 > £2.35 per 18ml pot.

We only put our prices up when it's a necessary change and this time is no different.  Whilst the metal prices have stabilised over the past year or two, other areas like shipping costs and utility bills have continued to increase by a few % each year.  There's also a 6% increase coming on the minimum wage this April so we'll need to make sure that all of our staff get a pay rise (we've got a great bunch of employees and already pay above the minimum, but we want to keep ahead of the curve).

As a rough guide, the price increase is a little under 5% and will look like this:

Regular 30 foot / 15 cav / 3 gun + crew packs = £5.25 --> £5.50
WWII-onwards 10-man foot packs = £1.75 --> £1.85
Army packs = £33.00 --> £34.00

These changes keep us around the middle of the pricing range for 10mm in the current market, there's a few higher than us and a few lower.  We'll be continuing to plough somewhere close to £10k per year into new product ranges, as well as adding more pro-painted photos to our website and continuing to bring the order turnaround times down further (we're currently at around 5 days on average).  Combined with our extensive catalogue and customer service, we hope that you still find us value for money and keep supporting us!

So there's 3 weeks before the increase, make sure to get your orders in before Feb 1st!

Forum Discussion
Pendraken Miniatures

Pre-order Beastlords from Traders Galaxy

Beastlords have entered the physical world!

Looking good! Also big!

Only a couple of weeks left to pre-order the Beastlords!

Beastlords

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Traders Galaxy

Exclusive Model Forktongue from Traders Galaxy

This months exclusive model is Forktongue

Forktongue

Forktongue picture 1

Forktongue picture 2

Forktongue picture 3

Forktongue picture 4

Forktongue picture 5

Forktongue picture 6

Forktongue picture 7

Packaged free with all orders of $150usd or more in January.

Traders Galaxy

Pegasus Bridge, Static Version from Combat Group Dynamix

Pegasus Bridge, static version resin. First sample from Combat Group Dynamix

Pegasus Bridge

Pegasus Bridge

Combat Group Dynamix

More Valiant Concepts from Traders Galaxy

More Valiant Concepts from Traders Galaxy

Hotwheel


Faction - VALIANTS
Earth Name - HOTWHEEL
Super Ability - RAM ATTACK
Earth Profession - BASHER LEADER AND ALL ROUND ASS KICKER
Likes - HANGING WITH CADMIA
Dislikes - OMEN

Traders Galaxy

Sneak Peak Shortstride from Traders Galaxy

Sneak Peak Shortstride from Traders Galaxy

Shortstride

Shortstride

Faction - VALIANTS
Earth Name - SHORTSTRIDE
Super Ability - RAM ATTACK
Earth Profession - BASHER AMMUNITION’S EXPERT
Likes - EXPLOSIONS
Dislikes - DECEIVERS

Traders Galaxy

Forgefire from Traders Galaxy

Sneak Peak Forgefire from Traders Galaxy

Forgefire


Faction - VALIANTS
Earth name - FORGEFIRE
Super Ability - RAM ATTACK
Earth Profession - BASHER WEAPONS DEVELOPMENT SPECIALIST
Likes - COLLECTING SCRAP PARTS
Dislikes - BEING MADE TO CLEAN UP HIS WORKSHOP

Traders Galaxy

10 Jan 2020

Timber Framed 3-Storey House from Battlescale Wargame Buildings

Our new Timber Framed 3 - Storey House is a preorder item and will start to despatch in early to mid-February 2020 but is available to order here now.

Timber Framed 3-Storey House


Cast in a high quality polyester resin and supplied unpainted.

Footprint: 35mm x 35mm

Battlescale Wargame Buildings

10mm Stable Block from Battlescale Wargame Buildings

A stone built stable block with rendered walls and tiled roof.

Stable Block

Stable Block picture 1

Stable Block picture 2

PLEASE NOTE: This is a preorder item and is due to start despatching in early to mid-February 2020

Cast in a high quality polyester resin and supplied unpainted.

Footprint: 70mm x 35mm

Battlescale Wargame Buildings

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order from Traders Galaxy

Beastlords series 2.0 Tyrannus, Arkynor, Dactylous – Pre-order – Release date March 2020

Note: Orders are not shipped until all parts of the order are available. This model doesn't ship until March 2020

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order picture 1

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order picture 2

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order picture 3

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order picture 4

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order picture 5

Beastlords series 2.0 Pre-order picture 6

This set comes with enough parts to make 1 x Tyrannus, 1x Arkynor, 1x Dactylous.

This is a RESIN multipart kit.  Superglue required for assembly (not included)

This set comes with 3 x 50mm round black plastic bases.

Traders Galaxy