Monday, November 25, 2013

Black Friday Sale and Audiobook Giveaway

The Christmas shopping frenzy is almost upon us!  Imagine a bunch of old ladies foaming at the mouth and tearing into each other over the last bin of one-dollar bedroom slippers.  It is in that spirit that I proudly present these deals:

I.  As I have recently blogged about, my sword and soldiery novella The Prince of Luster and Decay is now available as a 2 hour audiobook and, to my own surprise, has sent me a list of free download codes to give away to fine folks such as yourselves.  But I have a limited supply of these, so here's my plan:

   1.  If you're interested, send an email to jdbrink888 (at) gmail (dot) com.  The subject line should say something about "The Prince Giveaway" or "Audiobook Drawing" or something to that effect, but...
   ***  If your subject line reads "The Prince Rules All!" I'll put your name into the fishbowl twice (so your chance of being drawn is doubled!).
   2.  I'll collect entry emails now through Christmas Day.  Within a few days of that conclusion, I'll randomly select the winners.
   3.  How many winners?  Well, depends on how many entries I get.  I'm starting at 10 free downloads, though if I get enough entries to make it worth while, I may just increase that to 15.  It all depends on all of you, Dear Readers.
   4.  So please spread the word!  I'd love to give away five more of these free download codes!

2.  I will also be reducing the ebook price on my heroic fantasy novel Tarnish from $4.99 to $2.99 from now through Christmas Day.  It may take some ebook retail sites a little longer to catch up with the price change, but I'm initiating it now.

Already read it?  Not into fantasy but know someone who is?  Ebooks make good gifts too!  

Okay, my two week vacation is over as of today, so it's back to work on my next book, Dreams of Flying! (And, of course, back to work at the day job too...  Less exciting.)

The Santa photo at the top, by the way, comes from Miracle on 34th Street.  Classic.  Watch it this year.  In black and white.  (They don't make many good movies any more.)
P.S. -- PRIVACY NOTICE:  Fear not, friends.  Your email address will be used solely for the purposes of this giveaway.  I will then promptly lose it. --JDB

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

"Sleeps with Wolves" -- 2100 pt Chaos 40K List

I recently got together with J's Space Wolves and played a 2100 point game -- well, the first half of a game.  We got started pretty late and it was almost 1:00 am by the time we got into turn three, so the game was cut tragically short.  I say tragically because the awesome tidal wave of Chaos was just cresting and poised to crash when we had to stop!  Damn!  But I had fun building a diverse list and wanted to share it.

I called this list "Sleeps with Wolves" (you know, like Dances with Wolves) because it featured my chaotic Space Wolves warband with Slaaneshi allies.

Chaos Space Marine List
HQ  Thorbolg Wolfsbane (Huron Blackheart)
T The Feral Pack (CSM)(10) - Mark of K, Champ w claw, mbomb, Gift; melta, plas
HQ Selene (Lucius)
(T) Selen's Choir (noise marines)(6) Champ CCW; Vets; 5 blasters, 1 BMaster
T The Dirty Dozen (cultists)(12) Mark of S, flamer; all others with CCW + pistol
E The Half-Dozen Sons (Thousand sons)(5 + sorcerer) 
FA Slobber Dawg's Hunger League (spawn)(5) 
FA Red Skull Biker Gang (5) Champ w. p-axe, mbombs, Gift; plasmagunner
HVY Pipe Fitters' Union (obliteratorz)(2) Mark of S (to t-port onto daemonette icon)
HVY Santa's Battlewagon (predator) autocannon, HBs, warpfire gargoyles
HVY Bloody Fist (havoks)(6) ML (flakk), HvyBolter, plasmagun

Chaos Daemons Allies
HQ Baphemut & Cassandra (keeper of secrets) psyker 2, portal glyph, g-reward
T Cassy's Handmaidens (daemonettes)(10) alluress w. lesser R, icon
FA Morkai's Pups (flesh hounds)(7) 
* * * * *

This list worked pretty well for those first three turns.  You may notice there's a wide variety of units -- no spamming here.  I build fun lists and still manage to win as many games as I lose, maybe more.  Just sayin'...

By the way, fielded my big mutant ogres as my spawn.  They were cool (meaning big and ugly) while they lasted.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Chaos "Chapter Tactics"

HAPPY VETERANS DAY.  Thank you to all who have, do, or will serve our country.

In honor of honoring our vets, I thought I'd spend some time talking about our other veterans -- those of the Long War.   Thus, this poster is probably more appropriate, but just not quite as cool:

I have seen a lot of chatter online about how disappointing the 6th edition Chaos Space Marines codex is compared to others.  I'm generally not one to make a lot of comparisons.  (Partly because I only have three of the new codexes and since they cost so damn much, am not likely to get any more -- in the last paperback edition, btw, I owned just about all of them.  Of course, I was single and childless then too.)  And even though I don't get much into the comparative discussions, I can appreciate those discussions.  One point that really stands out is the new Space Marines having such cool alternate Chapter Tactics rules, while the old traitorous legions got bupkis.  So I thought I would play with that idea a bit.  I'm sure the forthcoming codex supplements will go into greater detail to cover these things, but I wanted to give it a shot myself.

*Disclaimer* I am not as versed as most big Black Library fans on the ins and outs of all the legions, nor am I up on all the new Space Marines chapter abilities.  I'm also not claiming these are all fantastic, balanced rules you should put to use in your games.  In other words: I'm just having fun here, people.  Please don't leave angry comments about you being offended that I would do something so stupid or unfair with this legion or that one, cuz brother, I'm just making $#@^ up.  So please read with fun in mind...  Though I do welcome feedback, comments, and other ideas, as always.

*Chosen* Also, I feel the Chosen got screwed in this edition.  In the 6.1 Brink's Edition, each unit of Chosen, being hardened veterans, may select one of the following special abilities: Infiltrators, Preferred Enemy, Tank Hunters, or Scouts.

The Legions most in need of these kinds of rules, I feel, are the Chaos Undivided forces.  While those dedicated to one power or another do get some special rules based on HQ characters and Marks of Chaos, the rest are all the same neutral grey.  I also figure that most of your chaos armies are made up of various warbands and rogue units, so these rules wouldn't necessarily apply to the whole force.  They would probably be more keyed on HQ and Troop choices who are the foundation of the force.  The warband likely has units collected from all over the sector who are tagging along to get their share of action, loot, and mischief.  Therefore, these Chaos Chapter Tactic ideas are acquired by dedicating at least one HQ (probably your Warlord) and some Troops to that Legion.  

ALPHA LEGION:  They are described as being "disciplined almost to a fault" and as insurrectionists who sow deceit and chaos by infiltrating societies.
   Disciplined to a Fault: The HQ and Alpha Troops are Stubborn.
   Insurrectionists: The Warlord/HQ has the Master of Deception trait, thus may nominate D3 units as Infiltrators.

BLACK LEGION: These are the once proud warriors of the Warmaster Horus himself.  Of course,the character Abbadon mostly has this covered if you field him.
   Black Crusader: Your HQ/Warlord has the Black Crusader trait, giving them a Preferred Enemy (Space marines) aura of 12".
   The Warmaster's Chosen: For every HQ model dedicated to this legion you may field one unit of Chosen as a Troop choice.

IRON WARRIORS:  Masters of the siege and builders of war machines.
   War Smiths:  For each Iron Warrior HQ model you field (such as a Lord, Sorcerer, or Daemon Prince), you may also field (at normal cost) a Warpsmith that takes up no Force Org slot.
   Let the Seige Begin: For each dedicated HQ choice (not including the free Warpsmiths) you may also select one unit from the Heavy Support section and include them as a Troops Choice instead.

NIGHT LORDS:  Masters of terror and terrorist actions, they stalk the darkness as predators in search of prey.
   Lord of Terror: Your HQ/Warlord has the Lord of Terror Trait, thus causes Fear.
   The Hunt:  Raptor units count as Troops if your Warlord is a Night Lords character. (Raptors also have Fear as a standard special rule, btw.)

WORD BEARERS:  The most fanatical of all Legions in their dedication to the worship of the Chaos Powers.
   Shepherds of the Faithful:  For each Word Bearer HQ model you field (such as a Lord, Sorcerer, or Daemon Prince), you may also field (at normal cost) a Dark Apostle that takes up no Force Org slot.
   Zealots: All Word Bearer Troops units have the Zealot special rule.

*Dedicated HQs* refers to models that can be said to be of this legion and no other.  Therefore, in your games you and your fellow players may decide that for the above Undivided Legions, a model with a chaos mark of a particular god cannot also be a Night Lord or Word Bearer character model.  On the other hand, one might also argue that an Undivided Chaos champion can still earn a certain god's favor.  Again, the words I type here aren't meant as actual rules, I'm just fielding some fun ideas.

As for the other original traitor Legions, those dedicated to a specific Patron Power...  The codex kind of already addresses them to a degree.  By having an HQ, Warlord, or specific Chaos Character, like Typhus for example, in your army, you are already gaining certain Warlord traits and/or unlocking certain units as Troops, in addition to havnig the ability to give marks to your other units to show solidarity.  So for the Death Guard, Emperor's Children, Thousand Sons, and World Eaters, maybe I don't need to add anything.

So there we go.  Hope you enjoyed this and it gave you some ideas for your own games/armies.  And I'd love to hear your own ideas for this kind of thing!

(BTW, images stolen shamelessly from various sources around the internet.)

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Fugitive Fiction Revolution

The Revolution has begun!

Well, Renaissance may be a more appropriate term, but it just doesn't have the same urgency or energy as revolution.

What is the FF Rev?  This is a reworking, revision, and repackaging of my existing titles as I move into the Fugitive Fiction of 2014, and it's happening in two stages.  Coolest part about Stage One: the new cover art on The Thorne Legacy, as seen above.  I have recruited artist Julius Camenzind's unique talents to do this cover and have asked him to be available when the next two installments of the Endless Dark Trilogy are ready for publication (2014 and 2015, most likely).  Which reminds me, I'm announcing that Legacy is officially part of a trilogy...  That's also part of the Revolution, as well as putting out a new edition of the interior of the book and setting things in motion to produce an audio edition.

Also in Rev Stage One is the 3rd edition of A Long Walk Down a Dark Alley, coming out just in time for the Goodreads giveaway of this book.  (And it's not too late to get on the list for the giveaway -- just click on the icon on the left sidebar.)  This 3rd edition features a bonus story added to the "trio of dark tales" as well as a new excerpt from The Prince of Luster and Decay to entice you into reading that one as well.

Stage Two of the Revolution, due to hit around the first of the new year, will be revisions and repackaging of the fantasy works Tarnish and The Prince of Luster and Decay, both of which are now the first two books of the Thunderstrike Saga.  I have hired on artist Trevor Smith to paint new fantastic covers for those books as well.  (More on Stage Two when we get there...)

Following the completion of the Fugtive Fiction Revolution on my existing titles will be the release of my next book, the superheroic collection Dreams of Flying.  So stay tuned for that book too, flying to a bookshelf (both physical and virtual) near you spring of 2014.

So check out the new editions of The Thorne Legacy and A Long Walk, and join the giveaways on Goodreads!  And until next time, REVOLT!  (No, wait, don't do that.  Sorry I got caught up in the revolution thing...)

(And in case you didn't notice, clicking on the artists' names will take you to their blogs.  Check 'em out.)