SRM’s Road to Adepticon Part 1: What in the Sam Hell am I doing

I’m doing one of these this year, I guess???

With 2020 and 2021’s Adepticons canceled and my own refusal to attend given surging COVID numbers in 2022, it has definitely been a minute since I found my way to the Chicago-adjacent crown jewel of the Midwest, Schaumburg, IL. Years past have seen me crushing Lou Malnati’s with good friends, gaming with folks from all over the world, and documenting my adventures on both my podcast as well as my short-lived YouTube channel. This is also the event where one year I brought all-smol Black Templars and walked away with three fucking medals.


You’ve probably heard a confluence of grouses about this already, but the registration process was not good! CVENT was doing an oopsie-woopsie/fucky-wucky at the precise moment registration began, and as a result the site would crash frequently or otherwise prevent progression. Despite mashing F5 (or CMD+R if you’re into that kinda thing) from 10:56AM PST onwards, I was unable to get any of the premium badges with their attendant bags of swag. After an hour of fighting this arcane website, I was left with my proletarian standard access badge, both swagless and bagless.

Zarbag's Gitz. Credit: SRM
I got Zarbag’s Gitz in my swag bag one year! Credit: SRM

Adepticon’s premium packages have the best swag bags in the entire biz, with absolute piles of games, models, coupons, and doodads for the price. Carl Tuttle, my Real Warhammer Dad and host of the dearly departed Independent Characters podcast, recommended that people who got the VIG (Very Important Gamer) package bring a spare checked bag just to lug all that stuff home. When I have been lucky enough to score a VIG, I have gotten bundles of stuff I liked, then flipped everything I didn’t to recoup the costs of my attendance. In others, friends of mine have received not just one, but two setts of Butt Dwarfs instead of things they really wanted. In some ways I am “over” swag bags, or so I tell myself, knowing full well I still tried to get one this year.

While I missed out on my annual sack of bric-a-brac, I was successful in securing access to the events I wanted to get into. The night before I planned out what I would be doing, and my homework paid off. Now, let’s figure out exactly what I’ll be doing over this extended weekend in Illinois.

What I’ll Be Playing

Stormstrike Chariot. Credit: SRM

On Thursday, I am starting the day simply with a Kill Team pod. I’ve only played Kill Team thrice at time of writing, but found it to be fast and fun, with a distinctly modern feel I cannot quite put my finger on. A bunch of low-stakes, low-impact skirmishes sounds like a great way to begin this event.

Friday, I will be playing in the Necromunda: Into the Wastes event, an all-day Ash Wastes series of games. Many Goons Whomst Hammer, including my podcast co-host Dan as well as our Necromunday underboss Fowler will be in attendance. I am yet to play Ash Wastes, but I’ve played boatloads of Necromunda so I think I’ll probably do okay.

Saturday I’ll be playing the Age of Sigmar Dawnbringer event, a small-scale 1000 point tournament spanning 4 rounds. The intent is friendlier and more casual than the big GTs, which runs the classic narrative event risk of “a tournament for bad players” which means I should feel right at home.

Sunday is the real wildcard, a Battletech Open Tournament, which isn’t really “open” since apparently Catalyst is providing players with mechs, to be announced and paired day of, and gaming materials. I have genuinely no idea what to expect here, but I’ll bring a lance just in case.

Wait, No 40k?

Elucidian Starstriders. Credit: SRM

I deceive you slightly here, as I will in fact be playing Kill Team, the snack-size skirmish varietal of that fortythousandth Warhammer. In a first for me, I will not be playing any full-scale 40k at a major event. I wasn’t sure how to feel about this at first, as it’s something akin to uncharted territory for me. However, after my experiences in New Mexico and NOVA in 2022, I think I’m kind of good on 40k for big events right now. Variety will be the name of the game (all four of em) this year, and only when I slammed that mf register button did I start to feel excited about Adepticon.

In years past I have played in the Gallant/Gentleman’s 40k event, the 40k Friendly, and the 30k Friendly with mostly positive results, but it wasn’t really in the cards this year. The folks who run the 40k Friendly always do a wonderful job, but the event is Top Gun themed with a requirement for a flyer in your list, and I really don’t want to bring my stupid Stormraven or fragile as hell Thunderbolt. I mean no shade against those guys and I’m sure it’ll be a grand time, but it’s just not the game I want to play this year.

Planning Ahead

Goliath Mauler. Credit: SRM

I’ve played myself somewhat here, as I have significant things to learn about all four of the games I intend to play. Fortunately, I only have a smidge of hobby stuff I need to do. For Kill Team, I straight up just need to play more games. I might try and learn how to use the Elucidian Starstriders, I might just slum it and bring an Intercessor Kill Team. Who knows! For Necromunda, I’ll need to paint up a second Mauler and learn how Ash Wastes interacts with the previously established Necromunda rules. I know the game reasonably well, even if I’m a bit out of practice, but this is a new dimension I am yet to enter. Age of Sigmar is one where I’ll have an easy enough time, but I don’t know if I want to bring my Stormcast or Slaves to Darkness forces. I’ve barely played any games with either of their recent Battletomes, and have a lot to learn. I can definitely field a 1000 point army of either, but fielding a good 1000 point army will be a wholly different challenge. Lastly we have that 85-ton assault elephant in the room, Battletech. I’ve only played one game of Total Warfare, and while I enjoyed it a ton, I certainly didn’t internalize it all. Combat Math is a complicated game!

Lyran Commonwealth Shadowhawk, Thunderbolt, Commando, and Catapult. Credit: SRM

That will be all for this inaugural installment of the Road to Adepticon, as I have much to ponder still. Should I paint more Chaos stuff and bring that? Should I finally paint those Stormdrakes for my Stormcast? Should I find out what happens when you DFA a mech in level 2 water? Join me next time, when I will have answers to some or none of these questions.

See you in Schaumburg, warhams.

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