Thursday, February 28, 2013

Long in the Fang (Part two)

Continuing on from Part One, we'll focus on Multi-Melta Guy, the only metal figure out the 3 models I recently painted for my Long Fangs. This will be pretty straight forward, so enjoy:

Base coat (shadow grey and base).
Listed in the Citadel Miniatures Catalogue 1986-1991 as SPACE MARINE ARMED WITH MULTI MELTA AND BOLT PISTOL (070121/47) this venerable old model was one of only 2 one-piece space marine models GW produced back in the early days of Warhammer 40,000. He gets major 'grimdark cred' for having more skulls on his shoulder pad than any other non-character space marine ...well, ever! I have no recollection of how I ended up with him. but he had been primed white and kicking around in the case with the other Long Fangs for a while now.

Base coat (complete)
As with the multi meltas that I have painted on other models I used Tin bitz as my base color for the barrel.

Mid coat
 For some reason I didn't take any pics at the early mid coat stages. Note that his right shoulder pad is highly unusual in that it is really small, just big enough to serve as a brace for the gun,  and that there was no way to put his chapter badge on it. Instead I decided to put his pack marking there.

Space Wolf Grey coat

 Here he is mostly done.

Finished and flocked
And here his is finished! On the multi-melta tip I painted the part closest to the base with gold, while washing the end of hte barrels with a black ink to give the sense that the gun has been emitting burning hot blasts at some point in the recent past.

Finished and flocked (side/rear view)

Here's the back pack. I found that the current (3rd edition +) style of back packs fit this model best. Also I found one with a flat plate which provided me with a place to put a chapter badge. I painted it at the same time that I painted Erik Axegrinder's back pack, and I discussed it on that blog post.

Interesting note about multi-meltas, and really most of the 40K weapons: Since the inception of the game, and the creation of the Warhammer 40,000 universe, GW has done an impressive job sticking with their original concept designs for their weapons (for the most part). I was working on the multi melta for my land raider crusader at the same time as I was doing these Long Fangs and the gestalt pattern as to what defines (at a glance) what multi melta is and looks like hasn't changed hardly at all since 1987! Even the fuel canisters are sort of in similar spots! I painted my a hot red color on both of the recent multi meltas.

Also note the 'army badge' on the right leg. I have mixed feelings about how that came off, leaning more towards 'like'... thoughts?

Thanks again for checking this out,

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Long in the fang (Part one)

Flocked, finished and ready to fight!
Since as far back as last July I have been using Long Fangs with my Space Wolves. One of the few units in the current Codex: Space Wolves that improved over the previous Codex, and it has more to due with the points cost of the unit than anything else. The addition of Snapfire and Overwatch in 6th edition has only added to their strength. Looking back at the battles in which I have included them, and you'll see that more often than not they not only killed more than their share of points, but often survived the battle. I found in my collection two of the old 2nd edition missile launcher marines from the Warhammer 40,000 rules boxed set, and ran them with the old RTB01 marines that I had turned into Long Fangs way back around '95.
RTB01 marine with 1st ed. Imperial Guard lascannon
When the Longs Fangs were created as a unit type way back in the twilight months of 1st edition in White Dwarf magazine, I had to reorganize my existing units. Prior to this Space Wolves were little more than a color scheme for your Space Marine Chapter, but all Space Marines pretty much had the same list. I loved the new background and gladly incorporated into my models. The original models all have studded left shoulder pads while the newer Mk7 armored marines now had smooth shoulder plates with the chapter symbol now being presented on the left side. My solution was to put the pack marking on the left leg greave and leave the chapter symbol on the right shoulder. I thought this worked out well, even though I have never seen anyone else do this. The next step was to take the heavy weapons out of the Tactical Squads and form them into Longs Fangs packs, while the remaining Tactical Squads would become Grey Hunters. Despite the age of these guys, and my maturity as a miniature painter, I have a fondness for these old models and I hesitate to strip them down and rework them, so in the meanwhile I will simply add newer models.

The "new guys", base coats.

 I started off as I typical do.
  • Clean up the model.
  • Add "ground" to the base.
  • Prime.
  • Base coat
  • Apply the layers (usually a thin mid coat, solid mid coat, thin layer coat, solid layer coat, and finish with a highlight).
The pic above shows these models at the base coat step.

While working on the two plastic missile launchers, I decided that a new Pack Leader was needed. The old model was armed with a powerfist, which proved to be a poor choice in game, and he was looking a bit worse for age than some of the other models. I also started to work on multi-melta guy as well. That model, along with the Pack Leader, will be shown in the later parts. For now, I will focus on the two missile launchers.
Knife guy. Mid-coat stage.
On this chap I simply added a Space Wolf knife. Nothing radical, but somehow it makes him immediately wolfy. Just to be sure though, I put a wolf tail on his missile launcher too. I decided to try painting the acquilla in a metallic color. Normally on the Space Wolves I have been painting the chest acquila in yellow/orange color which can be a real pain in the ass to get to a standard that I like an oftn frustrates me. I liked the color scheme I came up with on other models, vehicles mostly, and thought it could work well here.

Skull guy. Mid-coat stage.
On this guy, I attached a big wolf skull to his belt buckle, because that makes sense, right?

Skull guy. 3/4 stage.
Here's skull guy at the next stage, with the skull looking more boney and the acquila finished. I am pleased with the aquila here, and I think this is the solution to the yellow aquila dilema. 

Knife guy. completed.

Skull guy. Completed
The pics above show both models finished. Although it is difficult to make out, the original 1st edition Space Wolf Chapter markings were used on the shoulder plates. They have Army Badges on the right leg, which I will discuss more on the Multi-Melta guy's showcase in the Long in the Fang part 2.

Hope you enjoyed,

Friday, February 22, 2013

"Don't implant me bro!"

Following up from last night's preamble for this battle report, we shall now proceed with the recounting of last night's battle. Screech and I agreed to field 1000pts with the notion that we would have a quick game.

The Genestealer cult strike force, led by a Hive Tyrant (after they ate all the hybrids and brood-boys!).

The invasion force. 
1,000 points got me four ten-man thing units of stealers, two of which had Broodlords leading them and a loaded up Hive Tyrant with wings, Heavy Venom Cannon, Acid Blood, and Regeneration*.

Straken's Veteran Defence force

The Defenders
Actually, I'm sure Screech has a name for them, but I'll be damned if I know it!
What you see is what you get: A Leman Russ Exterminator ( "The Envy of Sven Axegrinder" it might have been called) which had Knight Commander Pask, two veteran squads with chimeras, and a command squad let by Col. Straken. Yup, two special characters. Not cheesy at all. Nope! LOL

Seriously, neither one of us had any idea what the other was bringing, heck not many people know I even have these models! ...well, until now I guess!

So we rolled for the mission, and got Crusade with the horizontal deployment zones. Screech deployed 1st, with me leaving half my army in Reserve along with the Tyrant who would deep strike in.
I don't recall what Screech's Warlord power was, but I think it is what allowed him to redeploy a tank, but mine was Master of Cities...yeah. that's right. The perfect thing to roll to play on THIS table:

The Master of Cities deploys

Imperial Guard deployment
 My psychic powers were interesting: The Hive Tyrant got Iron Arm and Crush. Patriarch (a broodlord, but I will call him that for this report to tell the two broodlords apart easier, and 'cause that's what the model originally was!) Puppet Master and Iron Arm, while the Broodlord got Endurance and Assail.
...calm before the storm...
Turn One
 Turn One.
Night Fight rules are in effect, and with the Master of Cities in effect too, I got some sweet saves, but still lost 4 genestealers from one unit and 1 from the unit in cover. The imperial guard lost nothing by ammo...

Turn 2, the Patriach Broodloard arrives!
Turn Two
Withering away from more Imperial Guard fire the stealers press on, subtly drawing the Imperial Tanks out from their cover. My Patriach Broodloard arrives, and we find ourselves in a weird rules conundrum:
Can a BS0 psyker use a witch fire power? Particulary a Focused Witchfire like Puppet Master? After pouring through the rules, we decided to allow it as the power wasn't a beam or a damaging power. But then we ran into another issue: could this be used on a tank? The FAQs were no help (Huh! -guess this question isn't asked frequently enough!) so we dediced that it would effect a weapon on the Leman Russ, and since I rolled high on the psychic test (over 5 per the focused witchfire rules) we randomized which gun would fire. The heavy bolter on the side failed to hit the tank that was an inch away from it. Amazingly bad shooting! LOL. With all that debate on this, I would choose not to use any more witchfire powers with my broodlords for the remainder of the game an use their other, and actually better, powers to protect their units.

The genestearls charge and blow up a chimera! First Blood goes to the Genestealers!
 The genestealers blew up a chimera in the assault phase exposing the veterans for the next round...

Turn Three.
The Genestealers move up
Those genestealers that blew up the chimera? They got shot to ribbons by the IG army! No surprise there, and the unit on the other side of the table was getting slowly chewed down as well...

My other stealer brood arrives on the same table edge, and take cover against the other building. Meanwhile the Hive Tyrant arrives take s hull point from the chimera and immobilizes. He put on iron arm on (what a sweat power by the way!). The patriarch does the same power but takes a wound from Perils of the Warp (whoops!)

The genestealers charge...through much for high initiative! LOL
 Turn Four
The entire Imperial Guard unloads on the genestealers in the ruins, who are still feeding and implant and violating those vets they just killed, and lose very few genestealers. My genestealer, a sole survivor of the 1st two units deployed, assaults the vets in a building who promptly slaughter it (genestealers need some sort of assault gernade! LOL)

My Hive Tyrant tries to tear up the Leman Russ Exterminator but doesn't succeed at doing much to it. The command section got out their tank last turn and shot at the onward moving genestealers, taking a few out. Things get hilarious when those genestealers charge the command section and the overwatch shooting and flamer counter attack reduces the Stealer unit down to 2 models. They charge and roll....a two. LOL. Failed charge!

Turn Five
Unseen in these pics, the other veteran squad is shooting at the other Genestealer unit slowly creeping up at them, however, endurance and Master of Cities is helping them stay alive! Meanwhile the Command section shoots up the hive tyrant leaving it with one wound. In turn, the hive tyrant blasts away with his Heavy Venom cannon and wipes out Straken and some guard, but at the last second we remember "Look out Sir" and another troop takes the hit!

Realizing that we're in risk of the game ending, I had moved the Patriarch and the lone stealer over to the objective, and I have the Hive Tyrant charge the command squad. Only to have the Hive Tyrant take an overwatch plasma pistol shot to the maw and it DIES!!!* LOL! It was a heroic and epic show by Straken and we both loved the over-the-top heroics of it all!

"You seize the objective while I seize the dayyyARGGH!!!"
 Good call on my part to move those two models to the objective, as sure enough, the game randomly ended!
Game Over man!

Genestealers: 5vp (1 objective, 1st blood, linebreaker)
Imperial Guard: 1vp (warlord).

An amazingly fun game. So totally different from any army I usually play.

I learned, by just playing with these two unit types, why this army is so challenging to play in this edition, as certain things have nerfed it bad!
  • Fleet. That change, combined with the rules that you can't assault if you run, was a total WTF moment for me, as I had no idea about that rule.  
  • Infiltrators not able to assault on the round they appear. I've known about this of course, but playing with Tyranids you really get to know this rule!
I still had fun, especially having no clue what I was facing. The night fight rule at the start of the game helped a lot, and this had to be the first game I've played in which a Warlord power had such a huge impact on the game. I honestly thought I was doomed, destined to be gunned down. Heck, I knew that when I made the list and knowing that I had a single ballistic attack in the whole army! But where my dice rolling started bad (they were SO cold) Screech's die abandoned him on the later turns.
Accept for Straken: that shot was AWESOME!

Good game Screech! Let me know when you want Game two...;)

*P.S. Next time I'll remember that I have Regeneraton and maybe my Hive Tyrant will still around a bit longer...

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Alert: Genestealer Insurrection!

Reach out to the stars, and touch the Hivemind....

"The bastion has been seized!!!"

Having brought those old Ultramarines out for a few games, it got me thinking about some of my other armies. I have been itching for years now to gather up all my genestealers that I have amassed over 24 years of playing these games and spring them on some unsuspecting foe (who at this point would expect me to plonk down Space Wolves or Orks), kind of like I did with the Daemons a while back. Dare to be different, right?

While going through my miniature cases I found these old Genestealer Hybrid models. I decided they needed some love, and seeing that I think their paint-jobs still hold up reasonably well, a photo op. For those of you who might not know what these are, you are missing out on some sweet 40K history and a unique aspect of 40k background that GW has sadly sort of left behind.

The idea is that genestealers, the advance scouts of the Tyranid Hivefleets, would infiltrate a ship (a cargo, etc.) and smuggle themselves to a densely populated planet, where they would slip into the fringes of society and implant a few humans, These humans would typically form chaos cults, whose insane worshippers would venerate their hybrid status and genestealers as demi-gods from the warp or whatever. Eventually they would cause enough havoc and chaos on the planet to greatly weaken the world's defenses from within, making the world unready for the Tyranid Hivefleet that the Genestealer Partriach has been psychicly summoning all along. The cultists would rejoice that their masters have arrived, realizing too late of course, that the hivemind has no special exception rules when it comes to eating a world: they would be consumed as well!

...I think that was a decent summary. For some good reading on the subject, check out Ciaphas Cain: Hero of the Imperium by SandyMitchell, and two short stories from the old Deathwing anthology: alien beast within and deathwing (This one explains the reason why the Deathwing paint their armor white).

So the Genestealer Cult was formed and an army was created in the sophomore years of 40k 1st edition, circa White Dwarf 117 (?), but it stalled ultimately as it didn't seem to have enough steam to grow in the way the developers wanted it too. In fact, at this point, there was no Tyranid connection, they were their own thing.  It was White Dwarf 145 that a new Tyranid list was released updating the old nids and incorporating the larger warriors from Advanced Space Crusade along with the genestealers and the new 'Screamer Killer'. When the 2nd edition of the game came around, the Genestealer Cult had been reduced to a small appendix list. They haven't had proper rules now for many editions.

I recap all of this to explain my tyranid army. Or seemingly lack-thereof. My brother had purchased the Tyranid and Terminators filler boxed set while we were still living in the UK, but lost interest in the Genestealers and sold them to me. I was keen on doing an army, as they were not commonly played much in our circle of friends. Really, at that point they only had blisters of the tyranids whoe soon be called 'hunter slayers' (and later in 2nd edition, 'termagaunts') and a few Zoats! Zoats...yeah, another time... anyway, so I had some of those and painted up these genestealers and I really liked that I got my paint scheme fairly close to how they looked in the White Dwarf and other publications, In fact, they were the 1st paint jobs that I think I 'nailed'. But when the 2nd edition Codex Tyranid range was released, I was revolted with the over-all design, and stopped collecting them actively.

Left to Right: missile launcher, plasma gun, autocannon, and conversion beamer.
So here they are, obscure and ancient weapons and all! The genestealer was painted in England in '92, and the hybrids painted in New Mexico and Tennessee between '93-'95.

Next time, I will tell you about the game that Screech and I played earlier tonight using my mostly genestealer force, as for now, I spent way too much time writing up this "preamble".

Hope you enjoyed the pics!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Ultramarine Flashback army fights on


1500 points of old school marines!
War returns to Johnson City! And it returns at the shinny new location set up by Hobbytown specifically for gaming! Hats off to Bob and Mary for making this happen and supporting local public play.

I showed up not thinking I would play, but Murl convinced me, so I dashed home and grabbed the ultramarine-flashback army that I have spent this month so far sharing my 1st and 2nd edition flashbacks about on this blog. This would be their 2nd 6th edition game, and my 2nd go around with Codex: Space Marines. Did I learn anything from my defeat at the hands of Screech's Thousand Sons (of bitches)?

This time I remembered all of the models, and opted out the Devastators and put the Venerable ('cause I can't argue that he's anything but) Dreadnought back in. I almost ditched the scouts at last minute as I thought they were pointless in the last game, but decided I would try a different strategy and have them infiltrate further into the field as opposed to coming in from reserve to just be shot to death. Also, and this is a big deal, I broke up the 2 tac squads into 4 combat squads.

A lot of guard!

I really can not recall exactly what this is comprised of (and if you send me a list Murl, I'll past it in here), just a lot of lasguns, a squad of Orgyns, lots of heavy weapons (mortars, and lascannons), a psyker and a beefy command section.

Objective game, there are 4 objectives. My scouts start off taking one (bloody boobytrap). Note that the cottage on the pyramid was Hiveangel's idea, his ode to Rohan.

Bottom of Turn one
Little movement on the Imperial Guard side with exception to his Ogryns who meandered forward. Meanwhile orbital bombardments and mortars rained down on the the boys in blue. The squad that started out on an objective (the woody terrain to the right of the landraider) was blasted off of it and almost routed off of the table. They rallied at the top of my turn moved to the right of the terrain, while the other combat squad moved in to retake the objective. My scouts were shot up bad, reduced down to 3 models, but they held their ground and returned fire into the unit that tore into them, getting fire support from the combat squad that positioned themselves behind the wall. The Venerable Dreadnought and the combat squad near 'Rohan' moved forward toward the woods in the middle of the table, on the other side of it is an objective counter.

Turn 2.
Murl's lone sentinel pops up and shoots the Venerable Dreadnought in the back! However this fails to achieve anything more than getting the Dreadnought's attention...on my turn the ancient warrior turns around and obliterated the walker with a plasma cannon shot.

Turn 2 end of Ultramarine turn

After with wither hails of las blasts, bombardments and mortar shells, the squad that had made for the middle objective was shot up bad, routed, rallied and was positioned by just behind the trees. The unit of guard that had shot them up had moved up, and were advancing closer. Meanwhile the scouts were blasted off of their objective by the guard. Honestly, at this point,  I was so out-gunned I didn't think these combat squads could hold up. I'm used to playing Space Wolves and I just don't often have units this small hold up to this amount of firepower.

Turn 3 end of Ultramine turn

Murl's third turn was vicious, and he turned his mortars onto the unit of marines at the wall, who lost 2 more brethren. The marines holding the objective in my deployment zone lost more guys to the orbital bombardment, and two survivors that were just to the right of it were slain as well. The Ogryn were charging forward, trying to catch the combat squad in the middle of the table but they botched their charge distance.

Neverness' third turn was the game changer. The landraider (which had been whittling wounds off of the ogryn unit for the whole game so far) deployed a unit of stormguard who unleashed a blaze of hellfire rounds into the ogryns. Leaving just the primaris psyker that had been shepherding them all forward. The combat squad in the middle hit him with bolter rounds and a flamer ended his reign of witchery!

Speaking of witchery, take a look at the far back field and you'll spot some terminators...

"We're coming for YOU!"

 ...these guys in fact! The Librarian teleported down with a Terminator squad, and in a bold yet reckless attempt at a decapitation strike, they blasted into the command section, killing over half of the General's retinue (including that pesky Master of Ordnance!) and caused most of Murl's army to recoil and react to this new threat!

Turn 4, and Murl pumping some serious firepower into the Terminator squad. 44 lasgun shots, and a single Terminator fell. Two more fell to concentrated lascannon fire. Then he charged the three remaining guys with a command section and his general. I declared a challenge with the Librarian, who bested his foe (an astropath I think?) while my terminators wiped out the command section. On the following assault phase the fight continued and this is how it was locked, with the librarian taking a wound from someone and locked with a guardsman (Sgt.?) with a powerglove. I can't recall when I lost the remaining terminators. Still, the VP for the Warlord kill was nice, and mine was still half alive...

Turn 4
With Murl's army focused on my terminators, the Stern guard mounted back up into the Land Raider and it moved forward. My three marines behind the wall moved forward and reclaimed the objective, while offering a prayer to their dead scouts whose remains where scattered on the bastion's base. My combat squad by the wood shot and flamed the imperial guard unit that had claimed the objective, while the dreadnought moved in...

Turn 5
Murl's 5th turn was mostly ineffective. On my turn, the combat squad, who was charged on Murl's turn, finished off the IG unit that was attempting to take the objective.

The unpainted guy is a commisar. (Yes, the others are painted, just with a primer...)

My Sternguard again dismounted and blasted an entire rank off of the front of the Imperial Guard Platoon that was shielding the lascannon heavy weapon team. I think they killed 10 or 11 guys with that round of shooting. It was significant enough to force a rout test, but the guard held their ground, something was preventing their resolve from cracking... Ah, it was a commissar that now found himself in the front, his "ablative armor" of fodder removed, and now he was taking the final hits and making his saves! Staring boldly and coldly into the uncaring eye lenses of the sternguard while screaming litanies from his Uplifting Primer!!!

The Uplifting Primer. You just aren't a guard player without one!

And this was how the game ended, oh, and my Librarian was locked in combat with this guy, who was trying to bash through his armor with a powerglove, who in turn was dodging the sweeping arc of the force axe!

"I don't care if your paint job is older than half the kids in the room, you're going down!!!"

 At the bottom of Turn 5 the game ended. I had accumulated 3 objectives, Line breaker and Warlord VPs, while Murl claimed and single objective and First Blood (those poor scouts; all they wanted was some shmores!).

Ultramarines: 11
Imperial Guard: 4

It was an awesome game, and until the Librarian and Terminators arrived on turn 3, I thought I was screwed! I was impressed with the Codex Space Marines 2nd outing, not just because I won, but the way the combat squad allowed for more tactical flexibility and when the dice are not screwing me, survivability! Not sure how this tactic would work against "all-comers" though, or all scenarios, but it seemed work well for this objcctive scenario. One of the things about facing the guard is the psychology of trying to overcome the fact that you are outgunned about four to one. You get over it though when you realise, they miss half the time, wound less than that, and you're making a lot of saves (assuming that is, you can make those saves! I recall an early battle report with Da Masta Cheef where I lost a Wolfguard squad to a single volley of shooting by his traitor guard. I can't seem to find it to give you a link, but we both reference it so much I might have to find that and repost it).

Speaking of the Cheef, while Murl and I were having our rather tame fight, it was battle-royal extreme on the next table between Da Masta Cheef's Eleet Grot Mountin Duvishun and Kushial's Lions of Harlech space marine chapter. Read about that here.

See what an army of mostly grots can do to a Space Marine army!
I have no pics of the game between RTvoril and Hiveangel, but you can read the amusing battle-report here.

Screech's last stand!

And finally, I watched the final round of Screech teaching two new players how to, well, kick his ass, which was good to see actually as Thousand Sons (of bitches) deserve to die, and it's good to have new players not squashed in their 1st public game. Well done Screech, who, if I didn't know better, I would think he was trying to become a GW Outrider with the way he organizes and supports the local gaming community around Hobbytown. We pick and poke fun at you a lot dude, but damn, you deserve applause for what you do, and I thank you for it!  This public applause, of course, doesn't mean that I don't plan to slaughter you when we game this Wednesday...;)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

An unintentionial Apocalypse

I am back on the road for a few days this week for work, and have brought with me Drop Pod #2 and the Portable Neverness Kit. Updates on this work will appear in a future post, but for now here's a teaser pic:

...kind of a let down of a teaser huh? :)

This past weekend I missed out on Saturday gaming due to work, but showed up in time to witness a massive Apocalypse scale game of Warhammer 40K being played by the local gaming club (is it fair to call us that yet?).

Hiveangel goes into far more detail on his blog which you can read here. 
(You're welcome for the pizza).

This is the scene I walked in on. Note that cityscape was painted and modeled by the Hobbytown staff (Patrick)

And the Masta Cheef states that he might blog about this event on his next update.
EDIT: and he has! Go see: no-mayans-were-involved-in-this

So, here are some pics for you to try to take in. Enjoy!

I don't know what's going on either...

Trenches modeled by Hiveangel. Excellently done I must say...

Da Cheef's amazing tank paint schemes, much to the envy of Screech... ;)

The very end of the event, as the Thousand Sons (of bitches) route the Orks...