What I’ve Learned, and Where I Go From Here…

I’m sorry to say, this will be one of my last blog posts for White Metal Games.  Things appear to be wrapping up here, and as some of you will have seen in Caleb’s posts, it may pretty much be the end for White Metal Games itself in the coming months.  And as the store shuts itself down, parts of it will fall away, like the stages of a lifting rocket… or more to the point, like the social media department and your Noobness here.  Including the Podcast and the Blog I’ve been managing since August.

It’s been the best job I’ve ever had, to be honest.  But there’s been challenges here.  Both professionally and as the 48th level nerd I’ve described myself as, one way or another, at the end of my blog posts.  Settling into a writing role and getting to record professionally was pretty much hitting the lottery.  And doing so for a gaming concern was like hitting it twice in a row.  The biggest hurdle was getting into the area of Games Workshop’s IP.


Coming into the position, I had the unique opportunity of talking about things in Warhammer and Warhammer 40K as they came out.  In the past, the need to do to learn about Warhammer at all really wasn’t ever there for me.  You’ll have noticed in my posts by now I’m more of an optimistic player.  I go Utopian and Hopepunk, not Dystopian and Grimdark.  I’ve never really wanted to fight battles simply for the sake of getting my yaya’s out or getting my armed conflict on.  There’s got to be a good reason for me to break out the guns and swords.  There’s got to be a higher ideal and hopeful outcome to strive for.  And in my perception, none of that was there, or ever going to be there in Warhammer.

Ohhh Emperor Pyrrhus, we never really knew ye… Did anyone? Really?

And I wasn’t entirely wrong.  If anything, a lot of the research I did over this season showed me the ins-and-outs of the GrimDark future where there is only war.  But one thing I did discover that I’d not exactly expected was the tremendous amount of backstory that WAS there to inform and provide reasons and history for the never-ending conflict.  How the whole thing started so nobly, and devolved into a hopeless galactic quagmire.  How valiant sacrifice WAS made, and continues to be made in the face of certain and overwhelming doom.

I learned a lot about the different chapters of the Space Marines. I learned that while some are as reprehensibly human supremacist and fascist as I’d expected, others were very much not.  Some were noble, but tragically flawed.  Others were self-sacrificingly valiant, but self-destructively so.  For every up, there was a down, and for every virtue, there was a fatal flaw.  I came into this with the idea of the God-Emperor of Mankind (Emprah Pyrrhus) as this bloated cancer at the center of the human experience.  Undying and undead.  Subsisting on 1000 human souls a day to keep him anchored to his mortal coil.  A kind of nightmare dystopian extreme of a world leader who shall remain nameless here.

I would like to have had a chance to paint this guy on a streaming cam for you lot.

What I found was that this was a noble (ish) fellow with an expansionist bent who, Arthur-like, created his own knights and legions. A kind of messianic god-king who fell to the corruption of a fellow who could have been called his most trusted son.  And the resounding tragedy of that betrayal on behalf of your actual no doubt about it, powers of darkness sundered the galaxy and space itself.  We found that the demigods this Emperor created were only human in the end, andto that end, became hyper-extensions of the natures they were born with and genetically designed for.  I found that all has fallen into ruin for humanity as it resists the advances of eldritch evil over and over again.  And finally, I found that I could bring my own Hopepunk sensibilities to that.  Regardless of the hopelessness of the 42nd millennium.

I didn’t get to learn about much beyond Ogors when it came to Warhammer Fantasy.  I’ve had a crash course in The Age of Sigmar re-tool of the whole Warhammer Fantasy game.  And found that Blizzard Software-like, Games Workshop means to do a classic pre-Sigmar version of that. And honestly, I’d looked forward to learning a bit more about the whole fantasy side.  As it was, I was adhering my articles to Games Workshop’s release schedules.  In the end, I was still writing in service to a store and a commission service.  So my articles were about things coming to the shelves, literally hot out of the molds they were cast in.  I was likely going to get to the upcoming release of the Chaos armies coming out soon.  As to whether this happens before Dec. 31st?  Well, we’ll see.

I’d have liked to learn more about some of the other factions in 40K.  The Orruks in particular.  There wasn’t any kind of HUGE expansion or release for them in the 40K stuff while I was aboard the good ship White Metal.  I feel like there was a missed opportunity there for me and my sense of the iconoclastic and ridiculous.  Which sounds like the Orruks to a T, to me.  The same goes for learning about the Aeldari and Necron.  Not for the same reasons.  But for interest all the same.  I picked up some of it when I was doing the Halloween and Orktober stuff.  But nothing REALLY in-depth like I did for Ogors, or the other ‘Noob Learns About-‘ posts.

Here’s hoping, right?

Where I did commericals and my pre-recorded segments for the War Council podcast. I actually do this for a living!

One thing I also learned was that I can put together a podcast on the regular when I’m paid for it.  I’ll say it now, I had my doubts.  And there’s been obstacles to overcome, surely.  As change after change evolved here at White Metal Games, the people I was working with had their schedules change.  I had no fewer than two co-hosts in four months.  Three if you count good ol’ Caleb.  So keeping on top of stuff to talk about, stuff the store has been doing or working on, as well as what’s new out of companies like Games Workshop and Fantasy Flight Games among others was also a challenge.  

Editing the Podcast with mah Gosug Ratta and Spider Glasses.

What I found was that I could indeed engage and talk with people, and could do it at length when it came to Hunter and I geeking out about things that we’re fans of.  I am, in the end, an extroverted introvert.  When I’ve had a social thing happen, I usually need a nice day to myself, or with my wife to recharge my people batteries. However, in a professional capacity, I’ve found that I can do people.  I can socialize and do my professional thing where we talk and my inner Host of a Talk Show comes out for showtime.  And I’m coming away from this position with ideas about where I can go as a voice actor or possibly a podcast personality in shows or productions of my own, or perhaps where I can go for others that might want to hire me in the same capacity.  (Hey, Epic Megagames… gimme a call, willya?)  

It’s sad for me that it all seems to be coming to an end so soon.  I felt like War Council was really starting to pick up and go places.  But in the end, the money necessary to keep me on wasn’t there.  And the support that most podcasts build over years didn’t hit the critical mass necessary to become self-sustaining in just four months.  That’s no-one’s fault, I think.  I’m told that the show was engaging and fun.  And that I’d taken the show in a direction I could be proud of.

That’s one of the larger takeaways I’m leaving with that I feel the best about.  That I did what I was hired for and did it well.  And if I can do it once, I can do it again and again.  Thanks for having me in the clubhouse folks. And keep an eye out… maybe you’ll hear from me again sometime.

Til then, as always, be safe. Roll crits.

-Edward WinterRose is a 48th level geek, and has been a professional gaming blogger for White Metal Games, as well as the host for the last 5 or 6 episodes of War Council, the White Metal Games Podcast for wargaming enthusiasts, and producers of wargaming miniatures. He hopes he can still be a gaming creative professional after this. He also dearly hates job hunting. But then, who doesn’t? ^_^;;;