Well, those three weeks went quick!
First, apologies for the lack of advance notice of my disappearance, it was first caused by illness (nothing serious, but enough to keep me away from hobby stuff) and then the busy-ness of Christmas with a 3-year old and a 1-year old, visits to two different sets of relatives and two sets of friends, plus a further visit from more relatives.
All that means I've not posted since the 15th December and I haven't managed to get any of the posts I was planning on writing started. I figured therefore that I could kind of make this a fresh start, with it being a New Year and all.
Well, 2016 was an unprecedented year for the blog and myself, and there were some fairly major achievements to be proud of. First though, let's have a look at my resolutions from last year.
1. Paint 500pts of a new army.
Sadly no, I didn't achieve this aim. I was working on my Emperor's Children but got struck down with lurgy before I actually finished any of the models sadly.
2. Replace brushes.
This was an easy one, especially considering I used money from Christmas 2015 to do it.
3. Place in the top half of two tournaments with different armies.
This was going to be a tricky one, given the number of tournaments I attended was 2. It started well with the Greetings from the Warp doubles tournament, where Martin and I grabbed 5th place and the best painted army award. Sadly my performance at Fluffageddon can only be described as abject, with the Tau putting on a horror show that's convinced me I need to re-build the army in a different style to be 'competitive'.
4. Organise Hero for a Day.
This was the major success for me personally last year, as 10 gamers came together for 24 hours to raise over £1000 for the Children's Cancer and Leukaemia Group.
5. Average 300pts per month of space marines built/painted.
This aim was originally just a painting challenge, but when I decided to sell off the Iron Fists it made sense to amend it and include building my new marine list. This one was a comfortable win, as I've probably almost achieved it just from building new stuff.
6. Paint 500pts of Dark Eldar.
This one got knocked on the head pretty early when I decided to sell off the Dark Eldar.
7. Complete all the Tau I had at the time.
Achieved, all the Tau got painted, though I've since picked up some more stuff and decided I need to repaint the whole army as I'm unhappy with the standard of the current scheme.
8. Draft of 4th Army.
I completed this pretty early too with the Bromheads, and though they have since evolved somewhat beyond those initial plans (ie I'm now also working on Genestealer Cult to go with them) that's a tick off the list.
9. Play a 5000+ pt game.
Well last time you checked in this was still a 'no', but it was finally achieved on the 30th December as Martin and I teamed up once more to take on Tzeentch daemons and Khorne Daemonkin. Sadly as we were playing at Warhammer World we ran out of time before completing the game and Martin and I were behind at that point. I'm confident we were in the better position to push on for the win though had we got to turn 5.
10. Win rates.
Hmm, I think the space marines made it out ok here, and the sole game I played with my Dark Eldar was a win, but the Tau underperformed badly, certainly not helped by 6 losses at Hero for a Day and another 3 at Fluffageddon.
11. Beat Ryan more than I lose.
Well let's just say this will carry over to 2017...
12. Average 5000 views per month on the blog.
I think the only phrase here that truly encompasses the reality is 'smashed it' with a total of 125,091 views in the year and not a single month dropping below 5,000. Onwards and upwards this year, so I'll look to have a similar aim with a new target.
13. Average 1 unit review per week.
Abject failure. I think I gave up after about 7 reviews in the year, so I'll be looking to have another go at this one too.
So I completed 7 of the 12 resolutions (I'm not counting the DE one) I set myself. Not bad, but not great either, so I need to work harder on things this year!
In other achievements for both myself and the blog this year, Martin, Tom and myself have set up the Grim Dark Brotherhood, and we're looking to push on with that in 2017. 10 of my posts from this year achieved over 1000 views, which considering they usually only feature on the front page of the blog for about 2 days is pretty noteworthy (in my land, I realise other blogs will easily beat these figures every time).
I also not only successfully ran my own charity event, but was successful in the weemen charity raffle, picking up the Collector's Edition Terminator Chaplain as the prize, and Siph and myself have some plans to feature these on our blogs in the future.
So, let's look forward to 2017 then shall we, and try to figure out what might be in store, both here on the Burning Eye, in my own hobby dungeon and in the wider hobby universe.
- Continue to post at or above 2016 levels, when I achieved 153 blog posts.
- Reinstate/create some regular features, including Funny Friday, and possibly we'll see a return of 'The Adept' and his take on 40k's particular style.
- Achieve over 20,000 views in at least 1 month of the year, and aim to average over 18,000 views per month.
- Continue to promote adsense on the blog, and actually get paid by google!
- Feature a narrative campaign series of battle reports using the Dusk Knights.
- Promote a more 'feature/spotlight' style of photography post when I finish painting a unit.
Personal hobby aims.
- Buy no new 40k miniatures in the first half of the year (excluding those I've already committed to, which comprise a chimera, guardsman squad, and 12-14 genestealers).
- Expand on commission painting services, getting a more formal structure in place.
- Buy the Dwarf Bloodbowl team, including a Deathroller.
- Continue to paint/build 300pts per month on average.
- Complete my first formation for the Genestealer Cult - the First Curse.
- Finish painting 1000pts of Emperor's Children
- Begin the repainting of the Tau, at least 6 units to be complete by the end of the year.
- Begin using an airbrush to increase the speed of my painting.
- Complete building my gaming table/storage space to enable battle reports on the GDB blog.
- Beat Ryan more often than I lose to him.
- Achieve a 60+% win rate with the Dusk Knights.
- Achieve a 50+% win rate with the Obsidian Enclave.
- Get into the playoffs of MAD League 3 Bloodbowl.
- Develop a consistently successful list for use with the Dusk Knights
- Place in the top half of two different tournaments.
I think that's probably enough challenges for now, don't you? No? Ok, one more, but it's not hobby related.
For several years now I've been overweight. In grand traditional 'New Year's Resolution' style I'm going to aim to lose that weight. I'll post up progress in my usual monthly reviews alongside the rest of my aims (don't worry, I won't post pics) but my main aim is to get down to 12.5 stone by May's review post.
Wish me luck!