So the first month of the year is behind us and I am about two weeks behind on my blogs, and I am pretty far behind where I would be happy with volume wise.  I was pretty sick the last two weeks of January and got in very little playing.  If you look at the cash graph there was barely any additional hands played since my previous blog.  In the end profit wise I am pretty happy with the way the month has gone.  I managed to put about $3300 in the green, and am pretty close to where I want to be for February and 100plo.  I did have the TCOOP the first Sunday of February but could not even muster a min cash :(.  I am pretty disappointed with that because I was going to you anything that I won in that game for a shot at 100plo.  I do think that I did pretty well at 50plo over January and am ready to start and push my bankroll at 100plo.  I won about 5.5bb/100 (9.5 EV bb/100) and also scored up about $1200 in rake back. I did want to have 30k VPPs cleared before the start of January but with the little amount of volume that I got in I was not even close.  I am going to start the month off at 50plo to get back into the grove, but then want to start and take shots over the weekend at 100plo.

I have been working more MTTs into my schedule and this has helped a lot.  I also started to add some NLO8 games in place of some of the NLHE games and those have gone pretty good.  I think that over February I am going to focus on playing the PLO and NLO8 tournaments, and maybe add a few NLHE games on the weekend.  The majority of my cashes in NLO8 have come at games <$10 BI but I think that is a bit of variance and learning.  I would say that I am decent at O8 and with a bit of work will feel more confident in the $27 and $82 MTTs.   Over all MTTs I had a net winnings of about $1790 and an ROI of 180%.  This ROI is high and not sustainable, but I am pretty sure that I should be able to probably get something >100% with how poorly the PLO MTT field has been so far.

 

Here are the graphs, you will notice that the down swing in cash was pretty well balanced by the profits in MTTS.

 

jan Cash

 

jan MTTs

With games I also did not do much the last two weeks.  I finally broke and got myself some Warhammer 40k models.  I decided to get myself some of the new blood angel models.  Also I have picked up the Deathstorm two army battle box.  I think that I am going to paint this set and try to sell it on ebay afterwards.  I am not sure how much I will be able to mark it up, but I am hopefully that I should be able to make a few hundred that I can use to finance my hobby a bit further.  The worse case scenario I have some good looking models for the display case.  The painting has been slow going the last week of January, but I am ready to push on in February.  As I get some of the units painted I will be posting the pics here.  I am going to keep the paint schemes as close as possible to the box and book.  Also once I have the set completed I might end up heading to my local games-workshop and playing out the campaign (three missions).  If I managed to do this I will put together some reports and pictures.

 

February Goals;

-Play majority of my hands at 100plo

-Get in more then two blog posts a week for the rest of the month

 

Well I got taught a hard lesson in perspective last week.  The pervious poker post was titled “A Difficult Week”, and at the time it seemed appropriate.  Then the present has passed and I have another week behind me.  Last week at the cash tables I put in about 7800 hands (~5500 since last Tuesday post), and over those hands I was -28bb/100.  If I fold every hand I would be ~-25bb/100 so performed a little worse then a drinking bird clicking  fold last week.  It was my typical cycle where I play, run bad, then play bad and get into dominated situations, which make me feel like I am running bad, so I play worse, get into worse situations, feel like the deck is punishing me, and around we go for a week.  I did hit a stop loss on Friday, which was a bit disappointing, but it did force me to take a break, and really evaluate my play over the week.

To be fair to myself I did play much better over Saturday and Sunday after thinking about the leaks that where starting to show threw but I just could really not run well, at the cash tables.  Poker can really mess around with you at times.  No doubt at this point you have probably looked a little ahead to my graph and noticed that I dropped about 25bis over my last 5k hands.  However I did manage to pick my run well spots this weekend.

Saturday I managed to win a seat into the TCOOP main event seat.  Your lesson in BBV this week:

Brag; won a $700 seat, Beat; Game is next Sunday at 3:30 so I will likely miss the Super Bowl, Variance; the win brought me back to even for the week.

I really was not keen on counting this as profits though since I was planning on putting it all into the main.  Since it was already spent I basically was still in the hole for the week,  but had a nice $2m freeroll to look forward to the first of February.  But the weekend was not over.  The cash tables where still a bit of a punishment on Sunday.  I again played pretty well, made a few bets on the river that I would like back but pretty happy with my play overall.  Maybe not my best play, but definitely much better play Saturday and Sunday then Thursday and Friday.  However there is always some good tournaments on the go over the weekends and I managed to make a good run again.  I won the $27 six max progressive super knockout (or some other 50 syllable noun that PokerStars can come up with).  I have never played this game, and I am not sure if it is part of the regular schedule but I really hope that it makes it.  This was my third finally table appearance in PLO MTTs (and I also have a FT bubble to my name) over 45 games.  This was also maybe the second or third time that I played a tournament of this type, but I really enjoyed it.  The big ko values at the final table help to add a dynamic which I think that I will play well.  Also there is going to be a lot of money left to play for HU, so you can make some special deals HU or very short handed and still have some decent money to play for.  As this game went I managed to get four of the final six bounties at the six handed final table.  I also managed to collect on all the large bounties, and when we went four handed I took out the two other players with +$200 bounties (so I keep +$100 and another $100 goes on my head).  I am of the school of thinking that to win any tournament you need to run well, and I do think that I was in a great spot in the later hands but I am sure that I played very well.  Here are the final knock out hands that I had against my opponents, as you will notice I was doing pretty well with my pf equity and post flop equity.  The most marginal hand was my AQ86$ds however the player on the button was playing super wide and I think it was worth going after his bounty since it was larger then the pay jump at the time.

AQ86$ds
http://wt.ag/1y3GTn3

AQ68ds

 

AKQJss
http://wt.ag/1y3I5a4

AQKJss

KTJ9$ds
http://wt.ag/1y3GzEX

KJT9ds

AKT6$ss
http://wt.ag/1y3GLnN

AKT6ss

QQ79$ds
http://wt.ag/1y3GRvu

QQ97ds

 

We did make a deal HU.  I felt like a deal was a good idea, the payouts where ~$720 for first, $500 for second.  the winner was also going to take $400 in bouties, so that made the HU match a $620 sit and go.  While I figured I had an edge, smoothing out the variance is always nice and I managed to get a deal for $675 leaving us with the ~400 bounty to play for (which I won).

plo win

So this was a huge week saver.  I was pretty frustrated with poker and it was nice to get another PLO MTT score.  I did forget to play the $82 PLO TCOOP game which I think was a huge miss, but these things happen.  In the end, I dug deep and managed to pull out some of that lovely green for the week.  So excluding the TCOOP main ticket, I managed about -$500 at the cash game tables, but +$1200 in MTTs, add in another few hundred in rake back and I can live with those results.

 

YTD Graph in bbs

PLO YTD 01-27-2015

 

Game wise it was a pretty slow week.  I do have a few models that I would like to get painted before the weekend.  I want to have finished my Rivet Wars models, and the last of my Arcadia Quest models.  I also did not get in any games this week.  It has been about -25c every day this week with the wind chill so I have been inside a little too much.  With how little I played this week I wish I got in more other things done.  I did spend a bunch of time mauling over the idea of getting some Warhammer 40k models, but in the end it always feels like such a financial commitment, and the models might never get played with.  I figured that a 2k points army would cost about $800+, and thanks to GW I actually would be dumb to buy the models that I would like because they would just get punished in the game :(.   I think that tonight I am going to spend some time catching up on some painting and modeling, and get back to poker tomorrow.  I really would like to get the volume up a bit, far behind my volume goal for the month, but definitely near the gross net profits that I would like to start and play 100plo.  It will be interesting to see how I do in TCOOP next week, anything over a min cash could go a long away in my shots at 100plo.

 

 

Here are the painted monsters for Arcadia Quest.  I used the quick painting technique that I gave for the troll for all these models.  I will be getting the painted characters up this week.    I do need to touch up some of the bases on these models.  I have not decided how I am actually going to base the models since the board tiles are so nice (I may get clear bases to put the models on).

 

Arcadia Quest (AQ) Goblins Arcadia Quest (AQ) Orks Arcadia Quest (AQ) Monsters Arcadia Quest (AQ) Minotaur Arcadia Quest (AQ) Spear Beastman Arcadia Quest Hammer Beastman Arcadia Quest Troll

 

Last week I was with some friends and we had been talking about painting models.  I was giving some advice on how you can actually paint a model quickly and make it look great with a few techniques and a bit of patience. I prime my models black to begin with, the prime coat does not have to be heavy and just needs to barely cover the mode, even if some of the plastic is showing threw that will be fine.

The first step to quickly painting some models is base coats.  I highly recommend watering down your paints while painting with acrylics.  A drop of water with a few parts of paint will really help to smooth out the paint and avoid those brush strokes, and globs of paints.  You may need to go over some spots twice, however the paint spreads better and probably takes about as much time as a heavy first coat.  On my model you will see some of the base coat still coming threw, I am not too worried about this because there will be a highlighting stage yet and as I mentioned this is the technique I use to speed threw models.

Troll Base Coat

 

After getting down the base coat I go ahead to the ink wash.  Nunl Oil from Games workshop is great for models that you want to give a gritty look to (like this troll for instance, I also used this was on my orks and goblins).  You can be generous with the wash and you want to cover most of the model and let it seep into the lines that are providing definition (like the arms, fingers, teeth, etc..).  However after the ink you will want to give the model some time to dry.  If you are doing a group of five or ten models you can probably get  started on the next step on the first model after you finish the ink on the last model.  I usually take a clean paper towel and dab the model to make sure that no ink is wet if I have not given the model a lot of time to dry.

Troll Ink Wash

 

Next will bring up the colors with a drybrush (for details on dryburshing there are a ton of great videos on youtube for free).  The paint color that I use is typically brighter then the base coat, but sometimes the base coat color will give it enough of a highlight.  In this instance, I brought up the red on the skin, brown on the leather, and wood.  I also used some brighter white on the teeth, and the bones in the bag (never did any side shots, but will probably add some at a later date if people want).  You may notice that the straps are a bit brighter then leather over the body.  This was done by simply completing a second quick coat afterwards.  I also added some yellow for the base of the eyes, and drybrush grey on the hair.

Troll Dry Brush

 

Last step is just some finishing details.  For this model, I did another drybrush of pink on the warts , silver on the nails of the bat and on the hair, and a dark white  on some of the pieces that I want to bring up to a brighter color (arm straps, some of leather bits, pink warts, etc..).  I also drybrushed the nails with the same white and got out the really fine details brush for the eyes.

 

Details

 

If I had the time, I perhaps could have done a bit better detailing (and I probably would not have missed the tongue :p ).  Also I did not do the base of the model yet, but I would say that other then waiting on the ink to dry this model took < 2 hours, maybe even close to an hour, but I was watching football at the time.

Arcadia quest was probably the second biggest reason I got back into miniature painting, models and table top games.  When I came across Zombicide earlier in 2014 I noticed this game created by Cool mini or not (CMON).  The art work on the cards, tiles and details of the models is amazing.  Also this game is right up my alley of interests.  Growing up I have always liked dungeon exploring games (more so video games then table top).  I also watched some of the game demos and it always looks like people are having a ton of fun playing the game.  After getting my hands on my copy this game has been a pretty big winner.  I have actually managed to get in nearly a whole campaign with Lesley and she is never much for games.  Also painting and finishing the models has been a lot of fun.  My only complaint is that I was not able to get the game off Kickstarter so there are a bunch of models that I do not have, and will probably never get because of the prices that people try to charge.  To be honest I have never been much of a fan of the way CMON has done this with their games on Kickstarter.  I feel like people who are late to the party miss out big time.  Also it probably hurts the middle guys at the games store.  I don’t think the games stores are ever making much from board games and I am sure they don’t want to pick up a title that has already done two million in presales.  Any how I digress again…

This game is great.  I really need to get a two or three friends over for a whole campaign (which I think could be played over three to four hours).  What is great is that you do not need to play a whole campaign at once, and you are left with nice notepads to keep track of your progress in a campaign.  The game is well thought out, seems very balanced, and  10/10 on entertainment.  I won the first quest that Lesley and I played, she drafted loot well and punished me in quest two, Third quest was close, and I really put the hurt on her in the last quest.  We do have the final quest to play yet and will probably give a proper recap at a later date.

I will be adding the pictures of some models, and I actually used the troll model for a quick step by step tutorial on how you can get some great looking models without a lot of time.

 

This week was a lot more difficult then the start of the year.  I have been fighting a bit of the flu over the week and it really hurt the volume and grind.  Add to the fact that I was running pretty bad threw the week at poker and it was not helping.  I was actually starting to wonder if my stop losses where not set correctly because I swear that I was loosing a ton.  I did have two cheats this week with looking at my results.  First was when I was running so bad and loosing what seemed like every 3b/4b pot.  I sat out and took a look to see if I had surpassed the stop loss of eight buy ins.  I was at -7.5 so it was a bitter sweet victory.  Victory since I have still have not hit a stop loss since I stopped watching my results and focused on my poker.  Bitter because it was still a -7.5bis and its hard to get in a position to move up next month when you lose that much in an hour.

The second cheat view was after my first session on Sunday.  I ran like the sun and quickly won every pot over 200bbs.  I had to cheat and look at where I was since the last time I looked things looked pretty miserable.  I won about 13bis in that session, and managed to claw back a lot of the run bad from early in the week.  I never like using the EV line on HM2 to establish how good or bad I am running, but the whole week was pretty bad and it was nice to just flop good for a change and scoop some pots.

This week I did add too many tables at times, mainly because I was not getting in the hours so I was trying to make up for it by adding tables to increase my gross amount of hands.  However next week I am going to get back to my better habits, keep the tables under eight no matter how good they all look, and focus and try to increase my win rate per hand, and boost my hourly that way.  At the start of the month I did have hopes of clearing 30,00 VPPs so that I could cash in some FPPs for a bonus and use that money for 100plo, but if I can maintain a win rate of 10bb/100 pre rack back at 50plo for the month I should have plenty of wiggle room for 100plo in February.

Long story short, I am pretty happy that I ended up in the green this week, considering that I was fighting this flu and not playing great poker in general (really letting my run bad effect my play).  Next week I am really going to focus on getting back to what worked well, less tables, shave some of my preflop range down, and make better river decisions (probably would give myself a 3/10 on my river play last week).

Also to add a little salt to the wounds, Monday night I played the big $27.  I did not realize that I had a ticket in my cashier for over a year now.  I managed to come 24th for ~$125 when I lost a 40+bb pot with QQ<KQs.  If I won that race I probably would have been in the top five in chips and my table was actually pretty nice.  However was just not meant to be.  I am really trying to keep my head up today about it.  Going in  was looking at it like a free roll, but it is never nice to be twenty players away from $5,000 and have to settle taking a beat and walking away with ~$100.

 

YTD Jan 19.2015

 

On another note, I am getting pretty excited for the next few weeks.  Any day I will be finding out when I can expect my Zombicide season three shipment.  There is also a hot new Conan game on Kickstarter.

This seems like its going to be a steal.  The figures look great, the smallest harp that I could have is that it would be nice for additional poses on some of the five plus quantity models, however there is sheer value in this game from a modeling, painting stand point.   There is also wave two of Rivet Wars hitting shelves this week, and some Arcadia Quest minis next week.  I made a promise to myself that I am not buying either until I get my current models up and painted and pictures here.

Also I am going to doing a tabletop twitch channel.  I am still trying to get some games organised for this but if you would be interested in hanging out and playing a few feel free to contact me.

 

Managed to get the majority of the models painted (have a squad of stormtroopers and a E-web gunner left).  I have some little details that I would like to clean up on the rebel heroes but they are definitely ready for playing.

SWIA IMPERIALS

Star Wars Imperial Assault (SWIA) VADER AND ROYAL GUARD

Star Wars Imperial Assault (SWIA) STORMTROOPERS & OFFICERS

 

Star Wars Imperial Assault (SWIA) DROID

Star Wars Imperial Assault (SWIA) E-WEB GUNNER

Star Wars Imperial Assault SWIA NEXU AND HUNTERS

Star Wars Imperial Assault (SWIA) REBEL HEROES