Sunday, June 19, 2016

Black Legion Aspiring Champion (Part 2)

For this part of this series I want to take the opportunity again to share with you how I get the bases of my models looking the way I do, specifically on the paints I use, So what follows will be a sort of step-by-step in these regards.

Before I continued on with painting this model I decided that he needed a Secret Weapon 32mm conversion ring. After gluing it on I next had to figure out how to top off the base so that the extender would blend in seamlessly with it. This would be tricky as this was one of the newer plastic kits that came with a scenic base. The rocks are already sculpted on it as well as a few scattered necron bits. And a skull; -Gotta have a skull! The chaos champ himself is actually made to be stepping on the fallen necron's detached head.

After selecting the right basing material, some fine rock grit from one of the GW basing kits, I glued it on and was pleased with the results.

Actual True Grit.

Next I had to paint over this along with the ground that was already painted.

Territorial Beige. 

Here is the whole thing re-base-coated, at least the ground parts anyways. I use Apple Barrel Color Territorial Beige for all my bases as I like that sort of warm yet earthy dirt color. I recently had a scare regarding this color, as I discovered that I was about to finally run out of it. I went to the store that I usually purchase it and discovered that they, Michael's, seem to have dumped the entire Apple Barrel line in favor of some other, far lamer, brand. Luckily I found it, in passing, at a local Walmart and for only $.50! Just for piece of mind, I bought two bottles!

Country Tan for the mid-coat.

Here I next dry brush on a layer using Apple Barrel Color Country Tan. I have used Apple Barrel and other craft paints for years as it is essentially the same stuff as the other over-priced miniature paints that are out there -and you get a heck of a lot more paint for your dollar. Also note that the other parts of the model are coming along as well, and in the pic above you can see that the knife blade is mostly finished.

Sandstone highlight on the base, and the current state of the whole model.

Finally, for the base anyway, I applied an Americana color called, appropriately, Sandstone. It's a great highlight color for ground effect and desert tones. It's also incredibly cheap compared to Citadel and other name brand hobby colors, and you get lot more of it as well!.

For the rest of the model, you can see above that it is coming along as well. The whole tongue-armor thing is still weird to me. After apply some colors I thought I would like, I decided to wash the tongue parts with a red ink. So far it seems to be working. The brassy/gold trim parts are now mostly done, at this stage I am chasing down the strange and copious amounts of unnecessary details that this model has and I feel that I am entering the final stretches of completing it. Hopefully that will be soon!


Friday, June 17, 2016

"Those bloody Lions!"


A duel to the death.

Battle was engaged at our favorite local game store, Hobbytown USA in Johnson City. It was between my Chaos army led by Kharn, and Kushail's Lions of Harlech. You can read the short story he wrote leading up to it here.  First thing we did was set up a sweet board to play on, since we were the only ones there we had the pick of whatever scenery we wanted, so we decided to create a ruined cityscape to battle over before making any roll-offs.

A warzone to die for.
After we dug out our armies and reviewed our lists with each other, we rolled off and I won the roll to see who would set-up first. The mission was Big Guns Never Tire.
               
My 1998pt army.

My army was led by Kharn the Betrayer, and my other HQ was a Daemon Prince. My Troops choices were a 10 man squad of Black Legionaries, a 5 man squad of World Eaters, and 12 man unit of Khorne Berserkers. Elites choices were a 5 man squad of Chaos Terminators and a Hellbrute. I took a unit of Chaos Bikers as my FA option. And the Heavy Support was my Land Raider and a Vindicator. Everything but the vehicles had the mark of Khorne.

Right side of my force.t

After this I rolled up my mutations, the result of this rolling should have given me some insight on how wonky my dice were going to behave in this game. Just a bunch of weird stuff it seems. Anyway, with non psykers to contend with, I set-up first.

Chao set up.
Setting up first actually put me a at disadvantage, although I didn't recognize this at the time. The disadvantage being that my set-up was essentially two-pronged with hopes of surging forward and snatching up these objective counters as fast as possible. Kushail's force was considerably larger than mine and thus more flexible in a tactical sense. My units would have to be selective with it's targets while his could choose their targets for the most part. Had he set-up first I think I would have tightened my deployment into a more focused spearhead as I would have been able to see more properly what I was up against.

I must have been overly confident because I didn't take a pic of the Lion's deployment. Here is that army set out prior to deployment though.

A pride gathers.
For more details on the army selection and set-up part of this game, as well as a bit of fluff, check out Kushail's post.

CHAOS TURN ONE

The Lions scouts were started out on an objective deep in a wooded area but getting to them was going to be tough. Furthermore the Mysterious Objective turned out to be the one that allows them to reroll '1's'. I moved my bikes around the wood to try to get closer to the unit of scouts. After a lame shooting phase, I made the mistake of not attempting a charge with my bikers. It's possible that this decision alone could have cost me this flank. It definitely came back to haunt me!
Land Raider kills the Thunderfire Cannon!

Although I failed to get 1st Blood due to the Tech Marine surviving the attack, my Landraider did destroy the Thunderfire Cannon with an impressive las cannon shot. The Tech Marine would have a soulblaze counter on him from this attack for most of the game. My Vindicator fired a shot on a Devestator squad that could have potentially snuffed the whole unit however it scattered so wide that it caught another unit on a hill killing 2 of them and killing another with Soulblaze by Turn's end. My Hellbrute had nothing to shoot at so he ran and reached the objective, revealing it to be a Skyfire Nexus, something that would be handy to have when the flyers appear.

MARINES TURN ONE

The Lions of Harlech immediately retaliate by neatly plopping a pair of Drop Pods right between my 2 tanks. Even worse, they each had an Ironclad Dreadnought leap out and unleash hell on my tanks! Although this attack failed to kill these tanks the attack did result in a loss of HP on both and the inability to fire with both next turn. The LR would be unable to move and as a consequence would be a total sitting duck!

Precision-guided Drop Pods! 

The Hellbrute was eliminated by the streams of missiles that slammed into it, giving the Lions the 1st Blood VP.

Hellbrute, blasted back to hell by the Dev. Squad!

Beyond the woods lousy with scouts, there were at least 2 more Tac Squads and an entrenched Dev Squad, all of whom poured on the firepower to my bikers greatly reducing their number.

Shooting up the bikers! 
A excellently executed and far more effective 1st turn turn for the Lions.

CHAOS  TURN 2

The Chaos Gods laugh as they denied me any of my Deep Strikers from showing up this turn! Drats.

I confess, the Alpha Strike by the Lions Drop Pods confounded my strategy all to hell and was a bit demoralizing.  Both my vehicles were sitting ducks for those Ironclads and I searched desperately for a way to overcome them. I had a bold idea, and it looked like it just might work...

The charge of Kharn. 
I moved up the Khorne Berserkers in an effort to get close enough to charge, and even though a Berserker was dispatched via overwatch, the unit made the charge. Astonishingly, needing only a 6 to glance the Ironclad using Gorechilde, Kharn only managed to remove 2 HPs from the thing. It was the Berserker Aspiring Champion that felled the Ironclad with a well place Meltabomb!

The 1st Ironclad is destroyed.

MARINE TURN 2

The other Drop Pod arrived securing an opjective and disgorging a squad of Sternguard. Compare the pic above to the pic below to see what their massed firepower did to the Berserker unit!


The bikers on the left flank were eliminated by an Assault Squad that leapt forth with furious intent to destroy the Traitor Bikers and were very successful.

The end of Turn 2

CHAOS TURN 3

Arriving from Reserves my Chaos Terminators materialized with the intention of trying to decapitate the Lion's lesdership. They landed in the back field of their deployment zone and killed a number of the Captain's retinue, but not enough to achieve their objective. Also arriving from Reserves was my Daemon Prince whom I placed in the ruins near the only uncontested objective.

Now able to move, and somehow still functioning, the Land Raider surged forward to Tank Shock the Sternguard.  This only resulted in displacing them away from the objective, but that was fine, as I was able to unload my full 10-man Black Legion unit who whittled away a few Sternguard with their attacks.

Attacking the Sternguard.

Meanwhile on the otherside of the field my 5 man Marine Squad entered the woods in persuit of the scouts, whom they would entangle with in both assault and shooting right up unto the end of the game's last round.
Playmates meeting for the 1st time. 

Assault phase, and Kharn with his manical posse attacked the remaining Ironclad. Hitting all 7 times, again needing to roll a 6 to glance on 2d6, the dice-gods laughed upon Kharn and he only managed to penetrate it once removing one of it's Dreadnought Close Combat Weapons.

The return attacked killed the rest of the Berserkers including Kharn. This left both Kushial and I wondering how Kharn had lived 10k years without Eternal Warrior, but this Chaos Codex is full of baffling mysteries like this...

My right flank, end of Chaos Turn 3

MARINE TURN 3

The Stormtalon Gunship arrived and shoots down the Daemon Prince, scoring only one wound on him though.

"Who has air superiority?"

Meanwhile the scouts and the Khorne Marines continue their dance of death...

The fight for the Left Flank objectives.

Meanwhile, having abandoned his companions to their inevitable fate at the hands of the Black Legion Terminators, Capt. Glyndwr of the Lions of Harlech dove into the melee on the center of the table in an effort to save his Sternguard companions. After a few combat rounds his effort would prove to be in vain...  at the end of Chaos Turn 4!

"Slicing and dicing l!"

The Chaos Terminators would lose a few of their number to shooting but in the assault phase they would prove to be stout, defeating their aggressors. However the Assault Marine's resolve was true and with a roll of double-1's held firm in the fight!

TURN 4

Running low on models to move, the game is starting pick up. My landraider, having survived more shooting attacks from the Ironclad, made an effort to move away from it. Meanwhile my Daemon Prince landed to try to eliminate the nearby squad that was moving toward the unclaimed objective.

The fight in the middle began to wind down as the Black Legion had killed all of the Sternguard leaving just the Captain left to contend with the Black Legion traitors who would eventually fall to his blade.

The Chaos Terminators defeated the Assault Marines and consolidated towards the Captain's original squad.

TURN 5.

The best thing that happened on my turn was the surviving Terminators killed another marine squad with a combination of shooting and melee, forcing them to break from combat and route off of the board!  However attrition was beginning to take it's toll and I knew that I need to secure some objectives if I were to have any hope of pulling out a win. After winning anothor combat against  the squad of marines,  the Daemon Prince consolidated on the last unclaimed objective. Which was revealed to be  the one that's a booby-trap. Just my luck.

The Lions go and the only thing they accomplish is that the Captain finally eliminated the last of the Black Legion, and he too consolidates onto an objective.

We did a quick tally of VPs: The score is now 10 to 7 (Lions having 2 Objectives, I Heavy Killed, Warlord, Linebreaker, and First Blood to Chaos with 2 Objectives and Linebreaker).  This is a satisfying loss, and I could live with these results. I roll the die and it turns out we're playing a 6th Turn.

The status quo at the ebd of Turn 5

CHAOS TURN 6

With so little options, I think that I should  do my best to try to hold on to these objectives. But then I realize that a win simply won't happen, I figured I might as well just have some fun and go after a tasty target: his Warlord! So the Daemon Prince flys over the ruins that seperates them and charges the Captain. I hit wound him 4 times, and makes 3 of the Iron Halo saves but it's the final cut that manages to kill him due to the attack's Str being double his Toughness.

An epic duel

The rest of my turn proved to be futile, with the Land Raider again failing to penetrate the last Iron Clad. -That bastard has proven to be quite the survivor!

MARINE TURN 6

Killing the Captain sparked a fire of vengeance in the surviving Lions of Harlech who focused of eliminating the remainder of my army.

The Lions killed the remaining Chaos  Terminator with a krak missile. The lone Chaos Marine on the Objective in the woods was blasted away. The Ironclad finally rolled high on the 2D6 for armor penetration with the melta-gun causing the Landraider to explode dramatically.  And to avenge his Captain, the Storm Talon turned for a shot on the Daemon Prince and scored 3 wounds, which I failed to save all of, killing off the Daemon Prince.

Drats: Tabled!
Visualize the Storm Talon 's missiles streaking towards the Daemon Prince below.

The final score was 14 Points to 1 (3 Objectives, 2 Heavies Killed, First Blood, Warlord, and Linebreaker for the Lions and Warlord for Chaos). Funny what a difference a single turn can make!

The Lions claim the field, Chaos has been purged!
Looking back on this game my single biggest mistake was not maximizing the Chaos Bikers potential in the first turn. I wish I had figured out how to keep the Vindicator alive for a few more rounds as I was counting on it to thin out the loyalist horde before me. And the Land Raider's maddening tango with the Ironclad could have been better handled but I am not sure how. In the end Kushial's tactics were solid and executed almost flawlessly, whereas my attempts to counter them were often confounded by my dice! The situation with Kharn clearly illustrates that.

In the end we both had fun and we look forward to playing against each other again.

 For another perspective on this battle and some additional photos Click here.

"BLOODY LIONS! I'LL GET YOU NEXT TIME!!!"






Saturday, June 11, 2016

Chaos Bikers (Part 6)

Distracted by other hobby projects (more on those soon) these Chaos Bikers  took longer than originally projected, but paint still managed to get on them.

Flesh base coated applied on the fleshy bits.

Before I could get much further though, I was called out (publicly) to face down Kushial and his Lions of Harlech. Considering the points we agreed to field, I had no choice but to glue the bikes onto their bases ahead of the stage in which I ideally would have preferred. But when the cubs of the false emperor wander onto one's turf, sometimes drastic measures are called for...

Ready for that base!
...that ment rallying stuff out the paint queue and into the front lines!

Mount up and roll out!

This also ment breaking out some unopened blister packs that have been biding their time for their moment of murderous glory (more on that in a future post too) but they will make their first appearance as a unit in the pending battle report. And in their magnificently unpainted slender. Which is funny as Kushial messaged me to report that he was updating his list to include only painted models.
...I think I should feel bad about that, but I don't... ;)

Anyway, check out the hyperlink in the first paragraph to read a bit of short fiction that Kushial wrote as a preamble to the battle,  and check back here soon for the report as well as the continuing progress on these bikers.

Sunday, June 05, 2016

The Deadly Assassins (part 2)

In the first part of this series I presented  a review of my collection of Imperial Assassin miniatures as well as some remenising regarding the classic Imperial Assassin model that stalked the battlefields in the late '80s and early '90s. I ended that post with an image of my completed Eversor Assassin miniature and a promise to discuss him. So, without further prefacing:



I chose to follow the paint scheme that the  'eavy Metal team used last year for the Execution Force models as I found those colors to be striking and oddly refreshing. I was going to deviate slightly and make the reds darker so as not to evoke a mid '90s WD red-era effect, but in the end I figured I liked what I was seeing and just rolled with it. Besides, I do have 2 more unpainted Eversors and one day I will paint them to go with different armies, terrian and situations (i.e. Arctic, urban or jungle camo designs) which I can deploy as needed. Anyway that's my self-justification for painting a sneaky assassin with bright red all over him.


One thing about the plastic Eversor that comes in the Execution Force game (as well as his own $30 -yikes!- clampack) is that, finally after 20 years, the Eversor isn't in a pose that makes one think he's doing some kind of painful crab walk. Warfrog once called him the "my-ass-is-sore" assassin, much to my amusement, however with the name Eversor (EVER-SORE) I can't help but wonder if maybe it's one of those classic puny in-jokes that the design team used to do? Regardless, we can probably all agree that the classic model had an awkward pose and the new model looks great.

Takedown time!
I haven't started on the next model in this series yet, but if it goes as quick as the Eversor did I will be quite happy.

Monday, May 30, 2016

The Deadly Assassins (Part 1)

Deadly.

In my recent post regarding Secret Weapon Miniature's conversion rings I used four Imperial Assassin models as an example of how their conversion kits work. They turned out well and I intend to acquire more conversion rings!

My unpainted model of the Imperial Assassin 
I have collected Imperial Assassin miniatures since I started playing 40K. When I first saw the Doctor's Warhammer 40,000 miniatures way back in the last days of '88, one of the stand-out models in the collection was his Imperial Assassin, the bad-ass one that looks like a ninja. He hadn't painted it yet. The previous owner had only ink-washed the model, and it looked like one of the stained miniatures that used to be in the catolog section in the back of White Dwarf. Even in this state I thought he was awesome.

The Doctor's Imperial Assassin painted back in 1989

 Eventually the Doctor painted the model in a camouflage scheme, leaving the gun as it was. I can bear witness to the efficiency of this camo-scheme: in a few classic Rogue Trader games we had that bastard actually truly hidden on the table before springing out and kicking all sorts of ass. "Hiding" was actually a rule in the early editions of 40k, and the terrain we used back then was mostly clumps of moss to represent heath. This model excelled at hiding in that stuff. So much so that us players would forget about him for hours.

The Doctor's assassin. Painted in 1989. 

Also I also fondly recall a big game back then when he lost a fight with a genestealer and was implanted with a genestealer embryo. Ah, fun times.. It was a very epic game! Seriously we were playing Apocalypse-sized games way before anybody else was but that moment alone stands out as the (hilarious) highlight from a 6 way (it could have been more) all day-long and well into the night, Rogue Trader game!
I think the Eversor  inherited that short sword

Yes, GW used to sell miniatures with slotta-hex bases!

Anyway, I eventually managed to track down a model of my own (in the '90s he was sold over here in the States along with an Inquisitor model, the one that looks like he has VW Bug for a chest) as he was a somewhat vital model in the early days of 2nd ed 40k. In time I tracked down all the original Rogue Trader-era Assassin models, and here they are in a flossbox along with some other Imperial Agents.

Having fun identifying all that! 
In this box we have 2 sets of the Assassin temples, each set being a unique pose with exception of the Culuxus. The last model of the middle row next to the Calidus is the Space Eunuch, whom I always thought would make a great Inquisitor or Inquisitorial Agent. Next to him are 2 female assassins, one with a sword and wearing light robes and one being a horribly sculpted woman armed with needles and wearing synthskin outfit. That last one is probably the precursor to the Calidus Assassin design concept  and is mostly interesting due to it's scarcity.

The 4 deadly assassins with their converted Secret Weapon bases.

The Assassin models in the Secret Weapon post have been on my table, off and on,  for years now and I have been tinkering on them slowly (barely at all, to tell you the truth). The bases have been fully converted and I think they came out great.  Inspired by that post I have continued to tinker away on them, and here is how things have progressed:

Completed Eversor!

The other night, I had a burst of inspiration and I just went all-out on painting the Eversor and I was able to knock it out from start to finish! Knowing my precious free-time was very much fleeting I didn't even stop for the typical progress photos, I just concentrated on finishing him! I will talk more about this model in part 2...




Friday, May 20, 2016

Happy Anniversary, Imperial Space Marine


My anniversary marine, pending assembly.
The anniversary weekend of the Imperial Space Marine has come and gone and I was one of the lucky few (thousand) that managed to get one from the GW website. As I contemplate how exactly I am going to model him up, I am also considering what to do with the older, original, versions of this model.

The original Imperial Space Marine was still being sold in a blister pack when I got into the hobby in '89 alongside his brother (i.e. marine with same type of armor style and funky gun, but with his gun pointed upward) and with a commander-type-leader figure with funky blasters mounted on his power gloves ("Sgt. Blaster Fists" is my nickname for him). I feel like these 3 models were a huge inspiration for that famous painting of the Crimson Fists that adorned the cover of Rogue Trader and most recently reused as the cover of the Imperial Space Marine 30th anniversary box.

I am not sure why I bought this blister pack, as these models didn't fit too well with the plastic Space Marines of the time, I guess I just thought they were cool. Or maybe I wanted the leader guy? Regardless, I have always been fond of them. So they sat in my collection unused to this day mainly due to having no idea what they were actually armed with as their guns did not conform to any design in the game. Now, 30 years later, the two marines with their (finally) named and stat-ed weapons will find homes in my Space Marine armies, of which I have four.

There is a great side-by-side comparison of the original vs. the new to be found at Weemen's blog, as well as another nice painted example of the new version.

The original Space Marine
I haven't seen anything to indicate that I can't use one of these models in a Space Wolf or Dark Angel army. I think the plastic one will go to the Space Wolves as I have enough Space Wolf bitz to get this model looking good and wolfy. The metal guys will be divied up between my Ultramarines and Dark Angels. My 4th army, the Celestial Lions are all going to be using "newer" models and since they are not a First Founding Chapter they probably won't have access to ancient relics like Disintegration Guns. And, from a reality stand point, I have done far too little work on them. Also, I have been contemplating making a 30k army but I am very indecisive on which Legion to choose, and I am already seeing this model being Incorporated into 30k armies (it only makes sense really).

Imperial Space Marine #2?

And that is the crossroads I am at with this idea; Three Imperial Space Marines and far too many options. Still, after so long I am glad to see one of my oldest minis get a new lease for life. But 30 years on, we still don't have stats for "Sgt. Blaster Fists", so he shall remain in the collection, waiting...

Sgt. Blaster Fists


Thursday, May 12, 2016

Bolt Action: Universal Carrier

Tally ho!
It's been forever since I had any kind of update on my Bolt Action army, but fear not, it is alive and well. Sorta.


I snapped this up recently when I found it on sale. The Univeral (Brenn) Carrier for the British. I hope to get enough of these to have a fairly mobile force, a sort of WWII "Rhino Rush".


I took it home and base coated it almost immediately.I was off of work for a week in March of this year, a "stay-cation" if you will, and I thought that this could be a fun and different kind of kit to work on during the free time.

It sat in this state for a few weeks however due to my vacation being interrupted by a forest fire in my back yard...

(Not kidding)

...which brought my vacation plans to a grinding halt as we dealt with that and all the drama that surrounded it.

So I didn't get any further than priming the model. Now it is a month and a half later and I am again itching to get this model done soon. Stay tuned for future B.A. updates!