My name is Ben Ballard and I am extremely excited to be collaborating with Line of Sight and sharing my thoughts and love of gaming. By way of quick introduction I am a nurse by trade, I work in mental health at my local State Mental Hospital and before that I worked in the ICU for the major regional hospital. I am in my masters program studying to get my degree and license as a psych NP. I have a wife and child with another child due mid august. My hobby is definitely how I keep my sanity during this wild period of my life and I am excited to share my excitement about it.
I am local to Chandler and I know Jaden from when he used to live by us (RIP). Both are great friends of mine, and it’s a ton of fun to get to do some content with them.
On the gaming side of things, I am relatively new to the tabletop gaming scene. I started with Warmachine and Hordes about a decade ago, and promptly never really played much – I was much more of a collector than a painter or player. Then about 3 years ago, I became much more involved in the hobby side of things and I haven’t looked back. I currently play Warhammer 40k, Marvel: Crisis Protocol, and Conquest: The Last Argument of Kings regularly and I have too many other games I play infrequently. I collect Necrons, Imperial Knights, and am anxiously awaiting Leagues of Votann. In Conquest I play W’adrhun exclusively because they’re absolutely amazing in every aspect, but I imagine I will eventually snag City States, or Spires. I have a small Age of Sigmar Soulblight Gravelords force I’m building, and I’ll probably be convinced to buy Star Wars Legion any day now by Chandler (or vice versa).
Definitely Not Speed Dating.
Alrighty rapid fire “get to know Ben” questions (don’t call it speed dating, Do NOT call it speed dating!)
Why Necrons? Necrons were the army I said I would buy 40k for if they ever got a range redo, and that’s what happened. I love the lore, the models, the rules and how do you say no to models like the Silent King or Void Dragon?
Why Imperial Knights? Cause stompy robots go stomp. But in all seriousness, I wanted to create a custom knight lance with a backstory, history, and paint scheme all unique to me. I had never done that with an army before (I love studio schemes I won’t lie), I wanted the models, and it seemed like a great fit as they are already so narratively awesome on the table.
Why Wadrhun? Because of the apex predator. It seriously was the biggest peer pressure purchase of my life, but Conquest has risen to be one of my absolute favorite war games. Chandler peer pressured and cyber bullied all us locals into getting Conquest and we haven’t looked back 😉
Why MCP? MCP scratches a skirmish itch perfectly, I almost always prefer mass battle large scale wargames to skirmish versions but MCP nails the theme and fantasy of playing Marvel fight night so well that I couldn’t turn it down. Also some of my favorite game devs started the company.
Why Nursing? Honestly I have no Idea right now! It’s been a bit wild in the hospitals the past few years, but when I finish my masters it’s going to be an outstanding career that hopefully lets me play even MOAR GAMES.
Are you good, should we even listen to you? This is a tough one for me, writing these articles is intimidating. I am probably, very solidly, okay at gaming, in all its many aspects. But I do truly believe I have some value to offer the LoS community with my uniquely competitively casual look at games. I think I thread the balance between fun and competitive very well in a way that a lot of people look for.
What can we expect from you? Honestly a little bit of everything! I currently have lore spotlights planned, bat reps from some great games, and a pretty awesome hobby project/kitbash I am working on involving an apex predator and the hunting pack (Bonus points because it ties into my personal tribe I have created for my Wadrhun army!).
Share a random fact! I am about 800 days into a hobby streak. Because I work nights, and sometimes I work 7-9 12 hour shifts in a row, my hobby streak is 5 hours of hobby/painting/etc per week. Sometimes that gets spread between days a little wonky, but it always happens. It has been awesome, I love seeing myself improve more than anything else.
And that’s a little bit about me! Feel free to reach out on discord or Facebook and we can talk shop. I have some really exciting articles planned and even if you don’t play my factions, we can talk about the matchup! And honestly, I read about every faction anyway….