A new state of affairs

There’s been a lot happening in the last six months. In the same week I was referred for quick-response cancer assessment, I was told I would be made redundant, along with other people from my workplace, and that the games line I was working on would be wound up. Interesting times!

But things aren’t all black. I’ve had interviews for other jobs, and one is in the pipeline (though redundancy pay has been used up!). Rick Priestley and I (see the Nexus About page) discussed continuing the wargames rules with a new edition outside Warlord Games. Rick also persuaded Warlord to shift the production of existing items in the line to their sister company, Skytrex, so the game would not go into hibernation.

So, Antares 2 was born. Warlor allowed me to work on it whilst I worked out my notice, then Rick and I released it in a free, downloadable format that was designed to be easy to maintain. I also created a new WordPress-based, wiki-like website for the 2nd edition (see What’s New in V2) with free, downloadable army lists and a lot of new material – as well as revamped versions of the existing articles.

Whilst Skytrex is not producing new items apart from those already in the pipeline (a scurrilous reprobatee called Dirag and new versions of the Isorian phase troopers – to be released in July), there is an opportunity: 3D printing and .stls. Whilst Rick and I are not using this as a commercial concern, the prevalence of 3D printers amongst the hobby community has meant we’ve been able to allow players to produce their own 3D prints for items that don’t exist: the free, downloadable .stls mean we can let players print their own…

This is fantastic. The Vorl have been a major presence in the Antares universe since it was launched, but have never been released. We got in touch with Joey Pruitt, a designer in the states, who is an Anatres fan and has already produced some interesting insects. He designed us some excellent Vorl – and very strange they are, too. In fact, so strange, have a look at these speed-painted by Ruben Lopez Catalan. For Rick and I it’s a wonderful sight, one that is likely to give Antares 2 a boost, but it’s also a step along a new paradigm, one in which games are free, models are what players want (some players still prefer plastic or metal, and that’s fine – it’s easier to produce some in those formats, too).

Of course, I now have to design and test the Vorl army list. But it’s all good fun and we’ll just have to see how this new adventure goes!

Vorl speed-painted by Ruben Lopez Catalan

The Chryseis Shard: Plaguespore

BatuBarayI’ve recently written a new serial and an accompanying short in preparation for Warlord Games’ new supplement, The Chryseis Shard. Once more, the series involves Batu and Baray, both key characters in The Chryseis Shard, and introduces readers to some of the capabilities of Batu’s annoying nano drone – now a sort of personal daemon.

All parts of the serial and the Chryseis prequel are now available on the Warlord website. I sincerely hope you enjoy reading this development in a small part of the Antares universe.

  • Plaguespore Part I – Batu is ordered to investigate the disturbing disappearance of a Concord colony
  • Plaguespore Part II – Further details are uncovered of a devastating new threat to the Concord: the Plaguespore
  • Plaguespore Part III – Batu and Baray uncover some sinister truths about the Plaguespore and suspect a military mind is behind it all
  • Plaguespore Part IV – The pair interrogate the colony survivors and travel to the surface to investigate
  • Plaguespore Part V – The plaguespoe attacks and Batu’s Shamasai Shard is forced to respond
  • A Heads Up – After being kdinapped by the Isorians – and escaping – Batu is forced into exile but he and Baray are contacted by a NuHu Mandarin over an uncomfortable turn of events in the Chryseis system. A meeting is arranged…