donderdag 11 augustus 2016

Wonderful world of Frostgrave and how it feels to be understood.

It has been a funny week sofar. On monday we took the kids for a 2 hour drive to the sea, for their very first ever dip in the sea. Nikki took to it like the proverbial fish in the water, Emma....not so much :D (but eventually she too stepped in the surf). In the pictures I look like a mule with 1 backpack, 2 pairs of shoes and a extra bag full of beach toys :) Very fun day, nice to see the girls so happy, but utterly exhausting keeping my eyes on both of them, and the soft sand and the long drive was hell for my knee. We got back pretty late, put the kids to sleep and crashed 30 minutes after that. Sadly, my alarm clock was set at 6 as I had a appointment with the Autism team in Den Bosch at 8 in the morning, and since they had not specified for how long (or even what the meeting was about) and I don't want to spend a fortune in parking fees, I took the train and took a 30 minute walking to their office. My legs were literally killing me as they were very sore from the beachwalk yesterday so by the time I got there I was limping a bit. And then their coffee machine turned out to be broken!

The meeting itself was very good. We discussed the questions I have about my Aspergers (now grouped under Autism Spectrum Disorder) and they put forth many examples of how my brain works. For example, he drew a couple of trees together on the board. Most people will say that they see trees, period, or even specify the types of trees. I see trees but my mind sees 6 trees (3 pine and 3 deciduous) and a proverb, "door de bomen het bos niet meer zien" (Can't see the wood for the trees) all at once. If we then add a tree in the back without you knowing it, and ask the next day to look at the picture if anything has changed, 98% of the people will not see it. But I will., and I felt myself agreeing with almost everything. You have no idea how good it feels to have someone in front of you, who is "normal", yet still knows the ins and outs of my problem, and condense that in simple, thought triggering examples. In the end I was asked what I really wanted from them. As there is no cure for my problem, all I want is a handle to get to grips with my problem, work withing the confines of it and improve my quality of life, and to make it easier to find and hold a job again. He surprised me in that he had properly read my file and noted I had already done research on a local company (Werkmans) that helps Aspergers with high IQ's find fitting jobs. I said that I had mentioned this to the doctor at the UWV (they pay my sicknes benefit each week) but had received no further news sofar, and the company had mentioned that the UWV needed to approach them to set thing in motion (and pay for their services). Low and behold, he tells me that they have the power to inform and motivate Werkmans to contact the UWV directly to plead my case, and that with my level of intelligence I would be a prime candidate. That made me so elated, to hear such potential good news really cheered up my mood by 100%. I never limped home with more enthusiasm. I have another meeting next week. So tuesday was another good day.

The problem with feeling great and happy for a while is that it is, eventually, followed by a low, which in this case was the start of wednesday. I had trouble getting out of bed and getting started, I did a few chores but a major headache and muscle ache from the beachwalk combined to make me feel really miserable. No problem if you can just shake it off, but I could not, so slept some more. 2 hours later I wake up refreshed, do some more chores, feel a bit better and take the car out for a round of local plant nurseries for a paerticular plant (African Lilly) my mum wants for her birthday this saturday. After visiting 3 nurseries i just started calling the other ones in the area first cause they were either sold out or they never had them in the first place. Noone has it. Drat. Since I was near a goodwill store I decided to see if they had anything useful for the kids or me, and I picked up another Cars car for the TNT table, and a box full of rubber stamps (disney figures) for the kids. Jay happy :). Then shopping for dinner, back home again and off to Fysio (nothing to report, things are going well, she wants me to go to the gym 3 days a week to do cardio 3 times, and then split  to legs 2 days a week and upper body 1 day a week to help me with my back and to better lift my girls.....they weigh 13 kilos now and I'm having problems carrying them for more then 3 minutes at a time.

So I come back home, all happy, Kim just got home, I showed her what I had bought, including stuff from the dicsount bin from the supermarket which I knew she used and I thought she was running low of, only to be turned down, that she did not need it right now, and she even asked me to take the stamps back to the goodwill store and get my money back as she felt it wasn't a very good toy for our girls.

And I was right back where I started that morning, so I withdrew to my hobby room only to be greeted by this:
Yes, I have been cleaning my room, but dumped all the hobby stuff on my painting desk while sorting out everything else and then I did not get round to clearing that mess up, and now it made me feel even more useless and miserable.

Kim then came to check on me and I told her how I felt. How I wasn't happy with the state of the room, that my great plan to clean it once a week and keep everyting shelved and sorted just wasn't happening. Because I get distraced by everything every single moment, and I want to work on it. Kim said I just have too much stuff and I need to let more go so I have more space to store the things I do want to keep. She not only has a point, but she is right too. So, starting friday, I will begin a new round of cleaning and sorting and put up more stuff for sale. I thanked her for her insight, took the box of stamps and brought them to a mother of 4 that we get a lot of support from and gave it to her as a gift.

But wait......wasn't this Blogpost about Frostgrave?

Well, yes. Rikh, who I met online 6 months or so ago, had informed me he would be back this week (and a bit of the next) and was looking forward in a few games. I had to admit that since the last time he was here i had not gamed Frostgrave and the gaming group had fallen apart again (1 quit wargaming alltogether (so he said, but he bought a new army 2 weeks ago), the other shifted his focus to Age of Sigmar and Erik (Modhail) is having his own demons to deal with atm so I don't want to ask too much from him. I also had not painted anymore Frostgrave stuff, neither scenery or figures, and I don't even know in which box most of my Frostgrave scenery is!

Quite shameful really.

But I grabbed my case of figures, the 2 boxes of 20mm desert scenery that I have, the Urbanmatz cobblestone mat and books and dice and went, grudgingly, on my way. I took the drive there to just relax, feel a bit better and to enjoy the moment, as I did feel very nervous about gaming again.

Rikh was there to greet me, and after a friendly chat and writing down my warband for the umpteenth time (I keep losing my roster sheets) we placed the mat and scenery. We decided to play the solo (actually duo) campaign from Dark Alchemy, so we teamed up to get ourself through the harrowing ordeal.

For future reference, this is the list I'm working from for this campaign and will be my gaming list for the future:
  • Necromancer
  • Captain 
  • Archer 2x
  • War Hound
  • Ranger
  • Knight
  • Infantryman
  • Thief 2x
Built around the assumption that I will recruit a apprentice after the campaign is over (if I survive that long)

My wizard has the following spells:
  • Bone Dart (8)
  • Control Undead (12)
  • Bones of the Earth (10)
  • Fog (10)
  • Crumble (12)
  • Enchant Weapon (12)
  • Leap (10)
  • Push (12)
My Captain has:
  • Leather Armour
  • Hand Weapon
  • Bow
Game 1 is about a Alchemical monstrosity in the middle of the table, rats coming out of a hole and 2 doors, one of which is the exit. I took my Wizard, my Captain and my Knight.

First thing I noticed is that my Middle Eastern 20mm scenery works really well with 28mm. It did not feel small at all!

We start by avoiding the middle of the board like the plague, and when we roll to scatter the Monstrosity the arrow points straight to the door leading to the stairs of the big archway building, so the monster wobbles up to the top of the building. In my turn I exit from the archway in the back of the table and Push the monster off the edge. The resulting fall took off half of his health in one go. We were slightly more confident now :) Next turn sees a dazed monster getting up and climbing back up the (garages) building and spotting Rikh's wizard, who promplty cast Wall to block the monster (as we did not have a wall ready we just put up s folded sheet of stickers from his daughter....whatever works!). I cast Enchanted Weapon on my Captains Bow, giving it a +1 to shoot, and he killed a rat with that ( I killed 7 rats all game).
Rikh's band sneaking up behind the Wall (the folded sticker sheet) with the monster on top of the garages. I'm sneaking up on the left, making sure I stay out of line of sight, and grabbing treasures along the way. A rat has spotted my Captain (who is hiding behind the Minaret) and is moving to intercept.
The next turn I Enchanted my Knights weapon just in case, my Captain killed another rat and we kept hiding. Rikh tried to do the same.....sort of.

Rikh cast another Wall to block the line of sight and sneak past the Monster. That kinda worked.
Rikhs wall worked well, and he was sneaking up next to it, when the random move made the Monster drop off the roof beside the wall....right next to his team. To add insult to injury he was attacked by a rat as well. Things did not look well.

I found out that the door on my part of the board was not the correct door. Bugger. I then killed more rats and moved to the cover of the garages, with the monster on the opposite side, about to maul Rikh's team. It didn't go well for him, within 2 turns the monster killed them all (which makes me to blame in a way as I rolled for the monster.....oops). In the next turn the random move made the monster climb the roof again and he ended up right next to us, looking down on us, unable to move to attack us this turn.

My team quickly moved away towards the building in the middle, trying to increase the range on the Monster and to pepper it with (magic) arrows. Sadly we hit it for just 2 or 3 points, so the Monster dropped down, and moved in to attack, fighting with my Knight ( we both rolled the same number, both not being able to puncture each others armour. In the next turn I got to go first, and my Knight slay the beast in one go, ending the game and leaving me in possession of 6 treasures, a dead Monster and a pile of dead rats.

My wizard gained 2 levels, gained 100 Gold, 1 Grimore (Elemental Hammer), 1 Scroll (Summon Demon) and 4 Potions (Explosive Cocktail, Elixer of the Chameleon 2x and Potion of the Eye and Mind. My Captain gained 60 XP for his efforts and took the Exploding Cocktail for himself. My Wizard decreased the Bone Dart and Push spells to 7 and 11 respectively and took the scroll and the Elixer of the Chameleon.

I'm not sure what Rikh did, but he rolled a 1 for his Wizard, which he got to reroll for a 20, and another 20 for his Captain as well. I can't remember what his 3rd chap was but her survived too.

Quite a succesful first round I think. It took us a bit less then 2 hours from startup to finish, and it waqs only 22:00, so we deciced to do the next game as well.

Scenario 2. On a 2x3 table, we would be fighting flaming skeletons and zombies, in a across the table run to safety.

We had to move from lower right to upper left.
 We both started in the middle of the starting area, and splitting up almost immediately :D I cast Enchant Weapon on my Captains bow again, giving it a +1. I went left, Rikh went right. Next up, my Captain killed my first of 7 Skeletons in the game, and we moved up to the first treasure. A sneaky zombie moved in behind us. They moan so loud....

Rikh's team went right and through the middle and the Skeletons randomly moved all towards his area. In the turn before this picture was taken, he was surrounded by 3 Skeletons and I had just cast Fog between him and the Skeltons so he could climb to the top of the building, with my Captain working around the back of said building to nab the treasure next to it. His wizard then cast one of his many Grenades and blew up 3 Skeletons in one swoop.  Nice shot Sir!

My wizard then Bone Darted every skeleton in sight and we nabbed 4 out of the 6 treasures before ending the game.

My wizard leveled twice again, and my Captain moved to 90XP, so in theory next game will cause him to level up (if he lives and/or kills stuff). I found 90 Gold, 4 potions (2x Healing Potion, Elemental Absorption and Filter of Fury) as well as a Magic Item, a Faith Stone. My Wizard and Captain both took a Healing Potion, and the Faith Stone was taken by the Wizard as well. He then used his levelling to decrease the casting level of Bone Dart and Fog down to 6 and 9 respectively.

Rikh had his Captain taken out of the fight, ending up with a wound that decresed his Fight stat by -1. He did find a nice Magic Weapon and some Gold and potions, so it wasn't all bad.

We just had 2 fun games, and like clockwork, his wife and mother-in-law came home and that was my cue to leave. If Kim agrees, I will game again on Friday, either here or there, and we will play the third and final game of the series. If all goes well I should be able to reach level 6 with my Wizard and my Captain level 2.

The day ended on a high, I'm tired but happy and really feel like I need to paint my Frostgrave stuff and game more with it. Let's see if Erik is up for that every couple of weeks.

8 opmerkingen:

  1. Nice projects and nice blog.Keep posting.

  2. Great to hear things are moving with the A-team and Werkmans! (I wish I had a team like that to fall back on...) Nice to hear Frostgrave getting an outing again too.

    1. Yeah, I wish they would give you more support in finding a decent job (no those shitty ones you had in the past few years). I need to clean the shop again and get cracking on painting what I have asap. I do need a Knight Bretonnian one spare?

    2. Yeah, me too... I'll get lucky someday. I hope.
      None on foot, but if you can find suitable legs, I might have a plastic upper body for one?

  3. Enjoyed your post Johan, especially that bit about talking with the ASD team! As a fellow Aspie I know what you mean about being understood. I really hope they can find you a cool "Aspie Job", I could use a service like that where I live. My depression & anxiety has been improving these last few months since I've been trying to practice "Mindfulness Integrated Cognitive Behavioural Therapy" - it has calmed my brain down a lot (thank God!).
    Hang in there mate!
    All the best,

    1. Hi John, I heard a lot of good things MICBT from my wife who is doing her own therapy. I'm not sure what they have planned for me, maybe I will hear more next week.

  4. Johan
    What sort of knight are you looking for? Would an armoured chap from one of the Perry plastic boxes work?