Thursday, December 29, 2011

Post-Christmas Wrapup

Well, I got what I really wanted for Christmas. Guess what it is.

Hint ------>

Yep, it's Super Dungeon Explore. I'm a really big fan of Descent, so when a chibi dungeon crawl game hit the market, I had to have it. The miniatures are now all assembled, and await play.

But, you say, SDE is a boardgame, not a wargame. Yep, it sure is, but those will likely be some of the miniatures you see splashed in here and there, so I figured I'd give you fair warning.

Oh, the first expansion features a short guy in overalls and with a hammer, a princess, and hordes of turtle baddies. How cool is that?

Now from games I'm 100% sure I'll be able to play (my boardgaming group consists of anime and RPG nuts, so this game is pure gold for us) to games I'm pretty sure I'll never get beyond the painting stage.

I also got Songs of Our Ancestors, complete with 30 Quar minis. I've already finished painting up the Crusaders and the Royalists, and I'm looking at spending what dribble of Christmas money I have left (about $30 depending upon certain circumstances) to round out my collection so, should anybody show intrest, I can play the majority of the scenarios in the book. The game looks like a blast to play (I just love scenario-driven wargames) and with five more minis I'll be able to run a trench raid, an ambush, and a straight-up battle. I'll say one bad thing about the bundle I got, there aren't enough miniatures to play some of the intended scenarios (thus why I have to order two more Partisans). I can fill in the gaps easily enough, but c'mon, would two more minis really break the bank? As it stands, if someone wanted to play the Partisans they'd be stuck with an incomplete force. Really unfortunate.

That's really about all in terms of miniatures-related news for right now. I may throw up a "year in review" article (shamelessly ripped off from Demitra) but with the literally hundreds of minis painted in the last twelve months, that might be a touch hard. I'll definately have an article on the progress of my Quar soon, so stay glued to your computer screen!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Why Dark Eldar Now?

Well, to be honest, it was a twofold decision. I've been hovering around Warmachine burnout for a bit. It's really nobody's fault, just the fact that I keep gaming against the same faction. Even with two armies it's a touch repetitive. Having gotten Hordes: Primal from Demitra today (thanks again!) hopefully my ability to field my Skorne again will stave off my getting drained of enthusiasm.

The other reason is simple- I have time on my hands now. Not having any responsibilities a couple of days a week really allows me to kick back, put on the Mike O'Meara Show, DC AM, or the D6 Generation, and get some real progress made. I really get motivated when I have nothing better to do.

Depending on weather or not I get a gift card or good ol' fashioned money on Sunday, I'll be able to put a much bigger dent in the army as vehicles are a breeze to paint with so many nice big flat panels on them. With most of my infantry done, the only real thing keeping me from finishing my army is money. We'll see if I can polish off that Ravager tomorrow. All I need to do is run over to the grocery store and then pick up a last-minute present for somebody at Best Buy.

Expect to mainly see Venoms, Raiders, and Ravagers here for a while, as that's what I'll be focusing on for the forseeable future. I'd really like to convert up and paint those Wracks, but I'm saving them for last as a sort of "carrot on a stick" to get me to slog through the nine more vehicles I need to paint up before I get to my ultimate "dream army" for these guys.

I'm having issues visualizing how I want to paint up my Venoms. I definately want to keep up the current pallet I've been using on the Raiders and the Ravager. The problem arises from the purple I've been using on the sails for the Raider-esque models. There's no sail on a Venom, thus no place to paint purple. Since I'm only using the color as an accent I'm leaning toward just saying "forget it" to the color and slapping whatever miniscule amounts of cloth I can find on the two crew members with purple. Being as the crew are wyches, they should at least have some sort of sash tied around their waist, right? Here's hoping.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Calling it a Day

After a long day painting, I'm wrapping it up for today. Today I finished the Wyches and Haemonculus shown above. I've put a pretty good dent in the army, but I still have a way to go. That Ravager is a bit of a nightmare to paint. Trying to get a brush into those inside surfaces is trying to say the least. I'll have another group shot as soon as I finish up the ravager.

That's it for tonight.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Ponderous, Man, Ponderous

Well, I went over to Battlefoam and priced out getting a bag made for my Dark Eldar (who I've been painting up, and even added a new Ravager to- pictures forthcoming).  Turns out the bag I'll need runs $289.99. That's half as much as the army itself. This leads me to a quandry. How else will I transport an army full of skimmers on fiddly, thin flight stands? This is looking like my best option.

Now, don't get me wrong- I'm not knocking the company. It's just that this is a lot of money. I was sure this would not be a cheap venture, but this is about $90 more than I had planned. I have a Sabol Army Design bag for my Plague Marines, and I'm very happy with it, but due to the wonky dimensions of the Dark Eldar vehicles I see no real ability to compare the two against each other. It'll take cut foam in order to transport these guys safely, not pluck foam.

In the end it looks like I'll be saving up for this after I'm done building and painting my minis. One thing at a time, though. Must... Finish... Wyches!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Insidiousness Coming to a Table Near You

Well, I've been promising to post my Dark Eldar army list on and off for a while, and here it is. It's an aggressive assault-oriented list full of hand-to-hand specialists and various Darklight can openers. The army still suffers the same weaknesses it had before- there aren't a lot of boots on the ground, and if they get overwhealmed and bogged down the army is doomed. The army now has more Splinter Cannons in it to thin out things like Orks and Gaunts. The fact that they're mounted on Venoms makes them more mobile, and the units inside (Incubi and Wracks) are the perfect models to finish off hobbled squads.
I've decided I'm going to avoid using Finecast Wracks, instead going with the most common internet conversions- plastic Empire Flagellant legs, Ghoul torsos, and left over Dark Eldar heads. I'll do some snooping at my FLGW and see if I can turn up some more helmeted and bald heads. I've got four with helmets, and I'll be getting two bald heads with my two remaining needed Raider kits. That puts me at six heads. I'll need four more. I'll see if any of the Ghoul heads will work, but ideally I'd like them all to have Dark Eldar heads. We'll see what I can pull off.

Now to get on with the show!

HQ
3 Haemonculi w/ Liquifiers- 180 points

ELITES
4 Incubi, Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons- 153 points
4 Incubi, Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons- 153 points
4 Incubi, Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons- 153 points

TROOPS
5 Wracks w/ Liquifier, Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons- 125 points
5 Wracks w/ Liquifier, Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons- 125 points
10 Kabalite Warriors w/ Blaster & Splinter Cannon, Raider w/ Flickerfield- 185 points
10 Kabalite Warriors w/ Blaster & Splinter Cannon, Raider w/ Flickerfield- 185 points
8 Wyches w/ Haywire Grenades & Hekatrix w/ Agoniser, Raider w/ Flickerfield- 196 points
8 Wyches w/ Haywire Grenades & Hekatrix w/ Agoniser, Raider w/ Flickerfield- 196 points

HEAVY SUPPORT
Ravager w/ Flickerfield- 115 points
Ravager w/ Flickerfield- 115 points
Ravager w/ Flickerfield- 115 points

TOTAL
1,996 points

A lot more variety than the Grey Knight army list, and hopefully a lot more fun to paint and play.


...Now to get painting on those blasted Wyches.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Common Sense Prevails?

Will these guys be getting some love again soon?
Well, after some financial thought I may have come to a decision in regards to my Grey Knights. That decision may very well be "nah, too expensive". I did some adding up on the G. W. website and found that finishing my Dark Eldar army would cost about $419. Starting a Grey Knights army from scratch would run about $750. That's quite a difference! Even with the War Store dropping the Grey Knights to $600, that's still a pretty rough number to swallow.

In the mean time I'm going to paint up my remaining Wyches to try to get back into the same painting groove I was in when I abandoned the project a few months ago. I have a finalized army list sitting in a binder at home, and I'll post it later. The gradual build I was using before will most likely work better in terms of purchasing and painting than the "all at once" approach I would have gone for with the Grey Knights.

I'll be picking up more hours at work soon, so I'll have more money to "invest" in the army. Hopefully I'll be able to use my minis (unlike my MalifauX stuff) to play some games. The expanded work hours threaten my gaming schedule, and I'll be going to school in the evenings which will prevent me from gaming at any FLGS or FLGW.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Quick Post Before My Bio Final

Well, the Grey Knight bug has bitten me again. I'm pretty sure I'll be starting an army, if only to paint them up. I'm still stuck on a Crowe Purifier spam list, this time with no regular Grey Knights- just Purifiers, Psy-Backs, and Psyflemen. My revised list is as follows:

HQ
Castellan Crowe- 150 points


ELITES Venerable Dreadnought w/ 2x Twin-Linked Autocannons, Psybolts- 195 points

TROOPS
6x 5 Purifiers w/ 1 Master Crafted Nemesis Daemon Hammer, 2 Psycannons, 2 Nemesis Force Halberds, Razorback w/ Psybolts, Searchlight- 205 points each


HEAVY SUPPORT
3x Dreadnoughts w/ 2x Twin-Linked Autocannons, Psybolts- 135 points each

TOTAL
1980 points

So, I'm left with 20 points to spend. The question is, what should I spend it on? I'll keep pondering this after I'm done with this final...

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Cheesy Sci-Fi Awesomeness

Go look at these right now. Are they not the greatest thing you have ever seen? Flash Gordon-esque space amazons. Now that my Irken are painted, it's time for some Valkeeri, methinks. What about my list of coming attractions? They'll get some love as needed, but these ladies make me want to finish writing up my generic combat rules just to have them get into a fight with my little aliens! Now to start squirrelin' away the bucks.

That is all. You may return to your normal lives.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Little Green Men

For my birthday I received a set of grey aliens from Zombiesmith. They arrived about a week and a half ago, and I tore open the envelope giddy with anticipation. I'd been lusting after these minis for a while, and was ready to get to work on these fellows. I laid them out on my table and checked them out. There was a bit of flash, but nothing an X-Acto blade couldn't cure. They were lightly coated with mold release, so they took a quick bath in some hot water and dish soap. Onto the drying towel they went, and after a bit they were ready for cleanup. The flash came off pretty easily, and a couple of mold lines were easily cleaned up. Some of the tabs were too long for the slots in the round bases provided, so I clipped them down with side cutters. From there, it was supergluing time.


 All of the (now cut down) tabs went into the bases without issue. As expected, the tiny little fellas' bases were much too large for them, so I had to cover up the holes left in the base. I tore up little bits of of receipt paper from a recent shopping trip and attached them over the slots using Elmer's Glue-All.

 
Base issues resolved, I glued down some ballast...


Then outside for some primer...


As usual I used Rust-Oleum automotive primer. I then went over them with thinned-down Chaos Black, and began painting. I was inspired by Invader Zim,  so I decided to paint their skin green and give them beady red eyes. Their skin was basecoated and washed the same way I painted my Yu-Jing minis, and their eyelids were highlighted with green mixed with a little bonewhite. Once their eyes were painted red, it really made the faces pop. I gave the models different uniforms based on their roles, the commander a bright red, the psychic turmoil team colors revolving around which role I have in mind for them, and the basic warriors got a black and purple uniform (shocking, I know based on my propensity for painting things purple). The bases got painted in a moon-like grey since they're from outer space and all.






I'm tempted to collect an entire army of these guys. It's a shame the sculptor seems to have fallen off the face of the earth, as that means the promised heavy weapon troopers and robotic familiars will probably never be seen. Boo, hiss. I'm pleased with these minis in the end. Maybe I can convert some of these guys into special weapons troopers if I buy some more.


...With my sculpting skills, maybe not.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Bad Behavior Abounds

Well, despite a paper and a bunch of exams looming, I had to blow off a bit of steam. First, my fiance and her brother decided they wanted to get in a touch of Squig Racing. Thus the last post.
This was the original course. The rules were that you had to cross the arrows (from Gale Force 9 if you were wondering) in order. The first to do so won the race. The first course didn't result in enough collisions for our tastes, so we revised it.
There we go. Much more brutal. This course resulted in much more skill intensive games, as you really had to really manage the risk of hitting your squig, deciding weather or not to go around or over terrain, and correcting the inevitable collisions.This resulted in a good time for all.
I nearly won one of the races, as depicted above, but a lucky whack of a squig resulted in my ultimate defeat. The rest of the time my squig seemed to be magnetically drawn to every pool of water on the board. *splash, gurgle, gurgle*

I also managed to get in a game of Warhammer, trying out Ikit Claw. A badly timed "We'll Show 'Em" roll resulted in the entire Orc & Goblin battle line going all wonky (as depicted above). This, accompanied by the roll of a 4 on a Orc Shaman's miscast (thus the mangled unit of arrer boyz) led to my opponent losing control of his army and feeding it to me piece by piece. The more interesting parts of the battle were my big Hell Pit Abomination getting offed by Night Goblin Fanatics (I still can't believe I forgot they were there!), the Warboss' unit having to charge the Warpfire Thrower in order to get to my lines, and finally the Orc Warboss' demise. I dropped him into a hole with Crack's Call as he moved over to challenge me. Typical Skaven valor. Upon reflection this may or may not have been legal. The rulebook states that you cannot target a unit in melee, but Crack's Call doesn't really target anything- it just draws a straight line and forces everything along the line to take an initiative test or die. Hmm...

One thing is sure, I borked up Death Frenzy. The caster was slain by a Miscast result, and I let the spell remain in play. I should have checked this, but I was sure the spell stayed up until it was dispelled. Turns out it ends instantly. Whoops. It makes the victory feel rather hollow.

Oh, well. I'll just have to get a re-match. This time with a Grey Seer and Plague Monks.

I found that Ikit Claw is overpriced compared to a Grey Seer. He has little close combat ability, and his greatest asset is Storm Daemon. His missing wizard level (3 versus 4) caused him to struggle to cast spells, and the missing spell was quite a hindrance. The removal of my Rat Ogres and swapping out of a Warlock Engineer in exchange for a level 2 Plague Priest will add a Frenzied unit I can actually control, and my first time using the Skaven Lore of Plague. I've favored the Lore of Ruin as I see more utility to it, but the destructive potential of Plague has me intrigued.

Now back to my paper. 700 words and 3 resources down, 700 words and 3 resources (plus a bibliography) to go.
Then on to studying Evolution.
Then on to taking notes for my English final.
Then on to studying for my Biology final.

*Phew*, It may be a while until my next post...

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Squig Racing!


What This Is
Welcome to the revised and condensed edition of my somewhat locally famous squig racing rules. I have made this game much easier to play by removing any unnecessary complication from the rules. These rules remain fast, fun, and frequently fatal. You’ll require three six-sided dice (d6), a “scatter” die, a ruler or tape measure (at least 18”) and a squig hopper model for each player. A gaming table full of terrain is the best surface to play on, but any flat surface will do.
Whenever you roll two or more dice, add the scores together to get the final value. Two dice will be abbreviated 2d6, and three dice 3d6.
The Rules
                Agree on a course for the players to race around, and if needed jot the course down on a piece of paper.
                All the players line their squigs up at the starting line, and roll 2d6 for each player, re-rolling any ties. This is called the Initiative Roll. The highest score has to go first. Play continues down the initiative ranks until all the players have moved their models.
                To move a model, first declare whether your rider will Reign In his squig, Move Normally, or Hit his squig. Next, declare what direction your squig will move. When a rider Reigns In his squig, he rolls 1d6 to move, Moving Normally allows the rider to roll 2d6, and Hitting a squig makes the player roll 3d6. A model moves in the nominated direction a number of inches equal to the value rolled in a straight line. If a player rolls a double (both dice the same value) the squig decides it would rather move in another direction. Roll the scatter die and move the squig in the direction indicated. Should the player roll triples (all three dice come up the same value) the squig tires of the abuse from its rider, and eats the offending goblin. Remove the model from the race.
Squigs are assumed to jump high enough to clear any terrain feature in their way.
                Should a squig land in a non-liquid terrain feature it suffers a collision. If a squig lands on another racer, both suffer collisions. A collision causes a racer to roll 2d6 and find their score on the following table:
Collision Table
2 SPLAT! The squiq has met an unfortunate end. Remove your model from the race, as it becomes a puddle of squig and goblin goo.
3 WHAM! The squig slams headlong into the obstacle, knocking the rider senseless. The model does not move until the player can roll a 4+ on a d6 at the end of a turn.
4 THUD! The squig lands heavily, stunning both squig and rider. The model may not move until the player can roll a 2+ at the end of a turn.
 5 WHAP! The goblin is left slightly dazed. The model may not move again this or next turn. If the model suffers another collision, any score other than a 2 is ignored.
6-8 BOING! The squig lands and immediately jumps again. Roll 2d6 and move the model in a random direction determined by rolling the scatter die.
9 WHOAH! The goblin loses his grip and scrabbles to regain control of the unruly squig. The model moves randomly until the owning player can roll a 2+ at the end of a turn.
10 AIEE! The goblin is thrown from the squig and begins chasing down his prized steed. The model moves randomly until the owning player can roll a 4+ at the end of a turn.
11 PHEW! Somehow the squig lands without any incident. The model suffers no effect.
12 YEEHAW! The squig is inspired to move faster! The owner may immediately move their model normally, even out of turn.
Moving due to collisions does not count as the model’s movement for this turn, so a player that has not moved yet may still move at his initiative.
                Note that a result that requires a score to be rolled on a die in order to end may not be rolled for at the end of the turn it is inflicted.
                If both models roll a result where neither hopper moves out of the way, reduce the distance moved by the model moving into the occupied position until there is room for the model.
                If a squig lands in a liquid terrain feature (a lake, river, swamp, magma, acid, etc.) it sinks like a rock killing both squig and rider. Remove the model from the race.
                Should a model bounce in such a way that it would land off the table, he has clearly fallen off the edge of the world, and the model is removed from the race. Alternately, the players may agree before the race that the race is taking place in a cavern or pit and instead of falling off the model stops at the edge of the table and suffers a collision.
Winning the Race
The first player to complete the course or the last player to remain alive wins the race. If the last remaining squigs are removed from the race at the same time (usually from the racers colliding), everybody loses.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Ogre-ey Goodness

These guys or my Skaven?
Well, with the completion of my Mournfangs (no painting to report since, I'm afraid to say) I have the itch to get my Warhammer on. I have two new lists to try out, one is my Skaven in which I drop my Rat Ogres for Plague Monks, the other is my Ogre Kingdoms army pictured to the right. I already have a game set up for next week, which will hopefully result in a battle report, in which I've promised to field Ikit Claw. I want to run a fluffy list, so I need to paint up that second Warp-Lightning Cannon- but I digress.

I have an Ogre Kingdoms army list I'm fairly pleased with, but it needs some tweaking- that tweaking being a handful of Sabertusks for anti-war machine duty. I'm pretty sure the Tyrant is a touch overkill, so I want to drop him for a Bruiser with similar gear. I'll not post the future army list just yet- but I will drop this one on you.

LORDS
 -Tyrant (general) w/ great weapon, Gut Maw, The Other Trickster's Shard, Giantbreaker- 307 pts.
-Slaughtermaster w/ additional hand weapon, level 4 wizard, Dispel Scroll- 312 pts.

HEROES
-Bruiser (battle standard bearer) w/ heavy armor, Charmed Shield, Talisman of Preservation- 184 pts.
-Firebelly w/ great weapon, level 2 wizard, Hellheart- 214 pts.

CORE
-7 Ogres w/ ironfists, bellower, standard bearer- 244 pts.
-7 Ogres w/ ironfists, bellower, standard bearer- 244 pts.
-10 Ironguts w/ bellower, standard bearer, Banner of  Eternal Flame- 460 pts.

SPECIAL
-4 Leadbelchers- 172 pts.
-4 Mournfang Cavalry- musician, standard bearer, Dragonhide Banner- 362 pts.

TOTAL
2,499 pts.

Looks good on paper, but how will it perform on the battlefield? That question may well be answered today.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

More Forward Progress

Yeah, no snappy title for this one.
Well, yet another tiny little post. I finished my Mournfang Cavalry. Here's a picture.

I received a Nomads starter box for my birthday, along with the Black 13th Gun Mage Strike team. Seems as soon as I dig myself out of my painting backlog, I'm backed up again. Not that I'm complaining, I'm just not sure what color I want to paint the Nomads minis. I'm thinking black and purple. It's been a while since I painted something purple, and the bug is starting to bite at me again.

Also the black 13th makes me want to run an eCaine list, and for that I need to paint up those Cygnaran Rangers I've got in my figure case, as well as one of those Chargers that've been collecting dust...

Friday, October 28, 2011

As Promised

Today I needed to paint up a gift for somebody, so while I was at it I finished up my ALEPH force.
Now all I have to do is finish off my Mournfangs before the influx of minis on my birthday. It's good to have such a tiny list of items that need to get painted.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Not No Progress, Just Very Little

Well, a really quick hitter this time. I've not gotten much painting done recently. This is my recent progress, as when I haven't been getting my weekly game in or celebrating my six-year anniversary with my S.O., I've been studying. I promise I'll have one of these two projects done within the week, probably the Infinity minis. Sorry for so little to see.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Arcing, But Not Spells

Why yes, I do own a few Cygnar minis.
Boredom, er, I mean inspiration hit tonight. I finally decided to get up off my rear and sit down to paint the arcs of vision on some of my models. Cygnar was near at hand, so I decided to do them. About an hour later and here I am with all the arcs painted on all my minis.
Here Haley shows off her sexy new arc.
That's about it for hobby progress lately. I plan on having some new minis to show off at some point, but with mid-terms hitting one after the other my time has not been my own. That will not be the case for a week or two here, so hopefully I'll be able to finish off those last two Infinity minis.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Finecast or Failcost?

My Ogre Kingdoms expansion now calls for a Firebelly, so I decided to take the risk and pick up my first (and maybe only?) Citadel Finecast miniature. The horror stories of massive amounts of flash, obviously miscast pieces, huge air bubbles, and melty resin all had me worried. For $38 this had better be one pimpin' miniature.

I, of course, asked to open the miniature at the store, which the sales associate had no problem with. One thing I'll give G.W., their customer service is pretty top-notch. The miniature seemed to have no immediate flaws, so I happily boxed him back up and took him home.

Once home, the first thing I noticed was exactly how flexible the resin is. The resin doesn't flex as much while on the frame, but once off the frame it's pretty bendy. The hammer in particular is soft and flexible, and the trophy dangling from the hammer's haft wiggles all over the place. This may or may not be an issue in the future, as I can see this whole area melting during summertime transport to and from games. The head and arm he's breathing fire on are separate from the rest of the body, as are the beetle-head gut-plate/loincloth and the hammer arm. The fire breathing arm required some bending to get into place, and even then the arm join required some gap filling. These are things I would expect from a metal miniature, so no harm, no foul.

Of course, in between cutting the model from the frame and gluing it together I had to wash the miniature, and the time spent letting it finish drying sort of broke up the mojo of assembly, but sometimes I get metal models with too much mold release on them, so I can't really hold that against the mini. A little dish soap and warm water later, and I had a mini ready for action.

Primer went on just as well as a plastic miniature, which was a bonus. Painting was no different than any other mini. It was at this point that I noticed some tiny air bubbles on the bottom of the plumes of smoke he's breathing. A fairly minor annoyance, but something you really don't see on a metal miniature. You may notice that this paint job is a bit more murky than the rest of my ogres. That's due to my dip having dried up. I was forced to try a Devlan Mud wash on the miniature, which came out okay, but not quite up to snuff...

My final decision on Finecast? Meh. There are some things on the miniature you couldn't achieve on a metal mini (like the trophy on the hammer- it would just snap off!) but I miss the pleasing heft of metal. The miniature wasn't the debacle I'd heard online, but it's nothing to write home about. I really enjoyed how easy it was to separate the mini from the frame, but with a metal mini there's almost none of that. Maybe a tab here and there that takes some snipping and filing, but that never got to me. The big downside to these miniatures is how dang flexy they are. I'm sure the paintjob will crack off all over the hammer as it gets bent around the tiny little bits it does during normal handling during play, and I do not relish figuring how I'll have to repair the paint job once that happens. A metal mini just wouldn't have this problem.

I'm pretty neutral about the medium, but if forced I'd have to give it a reluctant thumbs down. There's just too much I miss about metal that resin can't recreate. Will I buy another miniature in Finecast? Not if I can help it. I'll keep looking around for metal versions of my models, or I'll just convert them. But if forced to buy a Finecast miniature I won't whine about the switch to resin any more than I do about it normally.

A quick side-note: I got my hands on an English copy of Infinity: Human Sphere. It hopefully will arrive in the mail in a few weeks. Hooray!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wine & Warmachine

So, I'm having a night right now, and I feel the need to post a blog article. This leads me to the following:
My Current Cryx Force

At present I have found a Warmachine force that suits my play style. That is to say sneaky and synergetic. Note however that this force is subject to change once my Mercenary Faction Deck arrives (a purchase I've put off far too long considering I have a case labeled "Mercenaries"). I've already won all of one game with this force, which ranks it up there with my list I won a game with because Demitra messed up the distance between his Warcaster and the objective.

My "winning" list:

Lich Lord Asphyxious (+6 Warjack Pts.)
-Cankerworm (5 pts.)
-Nightwretch (4 pts.)
-Nightwretch (4 pts.)
-Skarlock Thrall (2 pts.)

6x Bile Thralls (5 pts.)

10x Mechanithralls (5 pts.)
-Brute Thrall (1 pt.)

10x Bane Thralls (8 pts.)

The Withershadow Combine (5 pts.)

Bloat Thrall (2 pts.)

The reason I say my force is subject to change is that Gorman DiWulfe is sitting in my figure case itching to loan his alchemical skills to my force. Depending on who adds less to my force, either the Skarlock or the Bloat Thrall will be dropped in favor of him. Who exactly that will be is up in the air, but let me assure both models that whoever fails to perform tomorrow will definitely be up on the chopping block.

Any way, I'd post my army tactics here, but I have a certain reader, who happens to be my regular gaming opponent, who would just love to know what's going through my mind as I use this force.

Here's hoping tomorrow has at least a respectable turnout for the forces of the Dragonfather.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The New Face of My Ogres

Well, with the release of a new book comes the rebuilding of an army. My Ogre Kingdoms army had a pretty good run under the old book, but now it's time to build a new list. The first thing you may notice is that the point bracket has increased on the army. This is for two reasons- one, because most players around here are playing their games at 2,500 points anyhow, and two because of the point cost increase on my Lord choices. On the bright side this adds six new models to my paint cue, once I can afford them, of course.

Without further rambling, the army list!

Lords
Tyrant w/ great weapon, Gut Maw, The Other Trickster's Shard, Giantbreaker Big Name (307 pts.)

Slaughtermaster (lvl. 4) w/ Dispell Scroll, Ironcurse Icon, additional hand weapon (317 pts.)

Heroes
Bruiser (battle standard bearer) w/ heavy armor, Talisman of Preservation, Enchanted Shield (184 pts.)

Core
7x Ogres w/ bellower, standard bearer, ironfist (244 pts.)

8x Ogres w/ bellower, standard bearer, ironfist (276 pts.)

10x Ironguts w/ bellower, standard, Banner of Eternal Flame (460 pts.)

Special
4x Leadbelchers w/ bellower, thunderfist (192 pts.)

6x Mournfang Cavalry w/ full command, heavy armor, great weapon, Dragonhide Banner (518 pts.)

Total:
2,498 points

The Tyrant does what I believe Tyrants should do- he beats anything that dares to stand in front of him to a pulp. Between his already above par strength, his great weapon, and his Giantbreaker Big Name, he clocks in at a whopping strength of 8! With his -5 armor save modifier he's sure to punch through even the thickest armor. His Other Trickster's Shard makes enemies ward saves much less of a factor, and the pseudo-regenerative abilities of the Gut Maw means that as long as he gets or makes challenges he's nigh immortal.

The Slaughtermaster is my magical support. Drawing from the lore of the great maw, he's there to buff my own troops while he prevents the big spells from going through. The Dispell Scroll is there to ensure that that one spell I just don't think I have the dice to stop gets squashed.

My battle standard bearer is, as usual, kitted out for survival. he's a vital part of my average leadership army, and the last thing I need is it running away.

The Ogre units are normal Ogres. Designed to grind the enemy, they want to win combats consistently and by a big margin through pure volume of attacks (~24 per round).

The Ironguts are just as they were before. High volume of high strength attacks with the Flaming ability is sure to put down big monsters and elite units alike. Bring on those Hell Pit Abominations and Grave Guard Deathstars, I'm ready for 'em.

My Leadbelchers are now going to be deployed in a 2x2 square rather than simply in pairs. One, because it ups their survivability, and two because their minimum unit size went up.

Finally come the new all-stars of the army, the block of Mournfang Cavalry. Cavalry that do a salvo of impact hits before unleashing a torrent of strength 5 & 6 attacks, re-rolling all 1s rolled to wound? Hell yes. This is the army's new wrecking ball unit, and it should do a marvelous job. It had better for its point cost.

That's it for my new, hopefully improved Ogre Kingdoms army. Here's hoping I can get it together and play a game with it some time soon.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Knight on the Town

Well, the ol' "new army bug" has bitten me, and so I just had to write up an army list to get that "what if" feeling out of my head. Today's exercise in wishlisting: Grey Knights.

Yeah, I know, it's "that army", but hey- if you're going to go for a new army, why not go whole hog?

This is not to say I'm getting a new army any time soon, but who knows about the future?

The army is pretty much straight forward psy-ammo spam, designed to cut up the opposing army at arm's length before finishing them up close. It's a take on a Crowe Purifier spam list, but with a little more grinding power in the form of the two strike squads. Crowe is there to eat up 150 points, provide an easy Kill Point, and make Purifiers Troops choices.

Now, without further ado, the list!

HQ
Castellan Crowe - 150 pts.

Troops
Grey Knight Strike Squad - 275 pts.
- Justicar w/ Master Crafted Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 2x Grey Knights w/ Psycannon
- Grey Knight w/ Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 6x Grey Knights w/ Nemesis Force Halberd
Rhino w/ Searchlight- 41 pts.

Grey Knight Strike Squad - 275 pts.
- Justicar w/ Master Crafted Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 2x Grey Knights w/ Psycannon
- Grey Knight w/ Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 6x Grey Knights w/ Nemesis Force Halberd
Rhino w/ Searchlight - 41 pts.

Purifier Squad - 154 Pts.
- Knight of the Flame w/ Master Crafted Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 2x Purifiers w/ Psycannon
- 2x Purifiers w/ Nemesis Force Halberd
Razorback w/ Heavy Bolters, Psybolts - 50 pts.

Purifier Squad - 154 Pts.
- Knight of the Flame w/ Master Crafted Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 2x Purifiers w/ Psycannon
- 2x Purifiers w/ Nemesis Force Halberd
Razorback w/ Heavy Bolters, Psybolts - 50 pts.

Purifier Squad - 154 Pts.
- Knight of the Flame w/ Master Crafted Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 2x Purifiers w/ Psycannon
- 2x Purifiers w/ Nemesis Force Halberd
Razorback w/ Heavy Bolters, Psybolts - 50 pts.

Purifier Squad - 149 Pts.
- Knight of the Flame w/ Nemesis Daemon Hammer
- 2x Purifiers w/ Psycannon
- 2x Purifiers w/ Nemesis Force Halberd
Razorback w/ Heavy Bolters, Psybolts - 50 pts.

Heavy Support
Dreadnought w/ 2x Twin Linked Autocannons, Psybolts - 135 pts.

Dreadnought w/ 2x Twin Linked Autocannons, Psybolts - 135 pts.

Dreadnought w/ 2x Twin Linked Autocannons, Psybolts - 135 pts.

Total:
1,998 points

There's plenty of high strength firepower pouring out of each unit, as I have eight Psycannons, four strength 6 twin-linked Heavy Bolters, and six strength 8 twin-linked Autocannons. Troop Transports should be feeling the pain early on in the game any vehicle not shredded by my fusilade will (hopefully) be stunned or stuck behind a stunned / wrecked vehicle. Infantry will simply be wetting themselves at the sheer volume of fire this army can pump out. I may have some trouble with heavy armor (Land Raiders and their ilk), so that's why every squad is toting a Nemesis Daemon Hammer. With Hammerhand going these beauties go up to strength 10 (as the +1 happens before the x2 strenght with this combination) which will have even Monoliths sweating if a squad gets too close.

Of course melee is not neglected. A bevy of Nemesis Force Halberds keep my knights striking first up close. Initiative 6 is a sweet, sweet thing. The master crafting on the Daemon Hammers makes sure the Justicars / Knights of the Flame's attacks aren't wasted. All too often my Plague Champions miss with all of their Power Fist attacks, and that re-roll can be a lifesaver.

There are no Psybolts in any of my squads, as honestly I'd rather have the re-rolls against Dreadnoughts and vehicles I require a roll to hit.

Eight potential scoring units help ensure that I claim objectives, and of course this army suffers the drawback of the "Multiple Small Unit" (MSU) army- a ton of Kill Points (16!). Oh, well. That just means I have to table my opponent.

Any way, that's how I'd do Grey Knights were I to do 'em, but that'd require funding- something I'm a bit short on right now.

Oh, well. I can dream...

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A Gasp of Air


The Man, the Legend
 Today I played a game with the "upgraded" version of my favorite Warcaster. Lich Lord Asphxious is quite possibly everything the interwebs say he is.

Now, let it be stated thet my view is biased since I just won a game with him. He will require more intense study to be sure. From what I was able to gather today however, he's just one big bag o' beatstickery.

Having said that, he's not a frontline 'caster. His MAT just isn't high enough to reliably nail enemy models, and having lost Sustained Attack in his transition to epic-dom, he now needs to roll out every single attack. This will mean boosted attack rolls on each attack, and despite P+S 15 on Daemortis, he's just not going to off a non knocked down Warcaster in melee. Don't get me wrong, though, he is a capable combatant against many (lower DEF) things. He took a pretty good chunk out of a Khadoran Heave that he got a free strike in on, although to be fair I did roll pretty well.

eGaspy is also not a backfield 'caster. His spells and his feat want him up near his thralls, where the action is. The ability to add a thrall to a depleted unit (as a result of an offensive spell!) draws him close to the action, and Hellbound assists in keeping him safe from retaliation. Teleport only adds to the fun, allowing him to get out of sticky situations he (hopefully intentionally) has gotten himself into. That spell sure saved my bacon today.

Asphyxious wants to be right in the middle of the action. Not overextended, but not hanging back like a coward. His forte' is area control and denial. Caustic Mist allows you to block up charge lanes by denying line of sight, or outright deny areas of the board to single wound infantry. Daemortis helps insure the area becomes a no-go, as anything that dies there coughs up a soul. I also found the mist was great for objective denial, as if it gets cast on top of a key point on the field only Warjacks (or Man o' war and their ilk) can get to it.

I didn't get to try out the big guy's feat, as all that died on my end of the batlefield were Mechanithralls and Bile Thralls (not really worth bring back). I didn't want to over extend my Bane Thralls, as I've lost them before to stupid errors after commiting them too early. Banes seem to be the way to use the feat, but I really don't want them to be destroyed if I can help it.

Any way, that's my mini review of Lich Lord Asphxious. Let's see if he continues to hold up.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

ESWAT

Appleseed inspired.
Well, my ALEPH stuff arrived, as you can probably see. Reading up on what ALEPH fluff I could scrounge, it seems that the AI's forces are peace-keeping affairs, so I immediately thought of ESWAT from Appleseed. Thus, my color scheme was decided for me. I looked around the interwebs amd found various SWAT uniforms, finally deciding on the above blue and grey.

I started with my usual Rust-Oleum primer, and then basecoated them Imperial Blue. Next came a heavy wetbrush of Ultramarine, and once that was dry I hit the models with a wash of ultra-thinned Imperial Blue. Once this layer dried (and it took quite a while), I layered on a wash of Levithan Purple. This left me with a dark, but in my opinion not too dark, blue uniform. Next were the grey areas. These were basecoated with German Grey, and then highlighted with a special blend of Bonewhite and Chaos Black.

The various markings in white are done with Vallejo Model Color, as are the gunmetal basecoats of the guns. The weapons are then covered with my favorith little painting secret (thanks Mike McVey!), Tamiya Smoke.

The cyborgs' skin is painted with Deneb Stone, washed with the old Citadel Chesnut Ink, and the re-highlighted with Deneb Stone. This left me with a kind of wierd "Data from Star Trek" artificial skin. Eyes and lenses were then hit with Scorpion Green dots.

Leather areas were first painted with Vallejo Earth, then washed with Devlan Mud.

I really wanted the "hair" on the minis to offset their uniforms, so I painted it a vibrant red color, achieved by first basecoating them Flat Red, highlighting them with Bloody Red, and finishing with Blazing Orange.

The bases were of course painted with a heavy wetbrush of Earth, and then a drybrush of Khaki, before hitting up the rims with Chaos Black. A couple of white lines on each mini to delineate their arcs of vision, and voila! Some fully painted ALEPH troopers.

My final list needs another Asura (with a Spitfire), as well as a Myrmidon Officer, and the Deva Functionary will be dropped from the final roster. All told my force (short the Deva) comes to 299 points, and with only 8 orders will be a touch... interesting to field. Hopefully the hyper-elite status of most of my troops will make up for the lacking order pool, but first I'll have to get a game in to find out.

That's about all from the ol' EV camp for now, but I expect to get the new Ogre Kingdoms book around the 20th, so I'll definitely be posting a revised army list not too long after then. Here's hoping for more than editorials until then, right?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

More Etna = Less Progress

This is the unlock screen on my iPhone.
Well, it's been an eventful week around the ol' EV camp.

This is to say that "Real Life" has been so eventful that I haven't been able to get any modeling or painting done. This means that tomorrow I'll be gaming with (*gasp*) unpainted miniatures! This turn of events has me upset. I, of course, would prefer to be using nothing but fully painted minis. The problem arises from the minis I need to be using having been so old that I just don't own the paints any more required to paint them in a manner matching the rest of their unit.

Even if I did paint them in such a manner, it wouldn't be by tomorrow (I'm chained by my desk waiting for my Biology 101 professor to post the presentation from tonight's class). This irks me to no end.


Any way, my War Store order remains in the limbo of being back-ordered. Tomorrow will see an email regarding my disappointment over the now two consecutive screwed up orders. The first was a crate of Monsterpocalypse figures that had been opened, thus causing me not to get one of every figure, rather, two of one and none of another. Now an order I placed with the assurance that both items were in stock, only to be replaced with the melancholy of waiting for the miniatures to arrive at the distributor, so they can arrive at the War Store, only so they can be shipped to me. It's been two weeks, and I want an answer as to why my Infinity minis aren't here.

Any way, At the very least one of my friends has ordered a Haqqislam starter for Infinity, so I'll be (theoretically) getting in a game of that soonish. Stay glued to your computers waiting for my next update, as it may well be full of rage, or it may be filled with elation. Either way, it should be interesting.


Oh, by the way, yes.
I am excited about the upcoming new Ogre Kingdoms army book and all the nifty new (non-finecast) minis.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Look What I Found!


While I was at my local game store I was rifling through their metal Skaven miniatures, and came across this little gem. Now, I've heard a lot of horror stories about the new resin miniatures being produced by Games Workshop, and due to this I've decided not to purchase any until these stories stop. I had given up hope getting my hands on a metal copy of Ikit Claw, but the gaming gods saw fit to smile on me. Now I just need to find a game to try him out! Of course I painted him up as soon as I got home.

In addition, I rounded out my Yu Jing force with a sniper. From what I've been hearing they're great for board control (with their extreme range and accuracy they can use an ARO against just about anything on the board).





Now that I've finished my Yu Jing force, I'm waiting for my ALEPH starter to arrive from the War Store. The website said the miniatures I ordered were in stock, but this wouldn't be the first time I ordered something listed on their site that had to be restocked by them...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Gunmachine

What follows is a rant, so for those of you who look to this blog for gaming and modeling, feel free to skip this post.

Okay, so I've been playing a lot of Warmachine recently, and losing a lot of Warmachine recently, so I've gotten to thinking; what changed between last edition (where I won my coins and gold cards) and this one (where I can't win a game to save my life)? The answer, quite simply, is shooting. Ranged attacks were a good way to soften up targets for a forthcoming charge last edition, or at best a way to off an already hobbled model. I liked this. It forced aggressive gameplay and prevented "camping out" in your own deployment zone. Now, however, it's the way games are won and lost. This sticks in my craw.

In a game that aspouses itself to be pure aggression, firepower should not, I repeat not, rule the day. If I want to get in shoot-outs all day I have Warhammer 40,000 and Infinity. These games are dominated by firepower, and they should be. Not so much with Warmachine.

Now, one could say that the firepower has to be used aggressively to be effective, and I'll agree to that, but the threat range of it allows units to hide all game before peeking out just long enough to gun down the enemy that has been running across the board all game. Really heroic, guys. As far as I can tell, there is no longer any reason to take any of my melee units. If the Bile and Bloat Thralls can't get the job done, it's game over. My Mechanithralls, Bane Thralls, and all the rest of my melee units simply don't stand a chance against a gunline, even with Stealth. This is really disheartening to me, as a game I love is devolving more and more into frustration. I like melee combat, and I believe that firepower should be emploved in a support role, not to outright win battles. Again, if I want those results, there are other games to play.

I know Privateer Press could not care less about the opinion of a single player who thinks shooting is broken, but I just feel the need to vent a bit. I used to love the need to tactically balance your forces in Warmachine, but it seems that now all one needs to do is load up on guns and pray they don't face Vlad's Wind Wall shenanigans.

My feelings on this are indeed biased. I seem only to face an extreme firepower-based army. I'm not saying the army needs to change, it's effective at what it does, and good for it. What I am saying is that with my current bag of tricks, there's really no good way for me to defeat it, and I'm just not into the game enough to plunk down money purely to try out a unit that may or may not work. Perhaps that is why skirmish games hold such a dear place in my heart. If your force doesn't work it's not a $100+ investment to try to make it work. At most, and I'm talking some pretty extreme miniatures here, it's $50 to add a single new miniature and shake the whole game up. Usually the shake-up can happen for around $10. For the $100 you'd spend on a unit for Warmachine, you can get an entire force for Infinity, and two for Anima: Tactics. I'm not a rich man, and do not have the disposable income to toss around to grab such expensive miniatures (thus why you haven't really heard anything on the Dark Eldar front for a while, and may never again). To be honest, the money I just spent picking up an ALEPH starter just killed off my gaming budget for the month. Again, I love skirmish games for a reason.

Why do I keep getting my rear handed to me? Perhaps it is because I don't spend hours pouring over my army lists. Perhaps it's because I have not been able to adapt to the new edition very well (the stripping of my Arc-Nodes was an extreme blow to my game). Perhaps it's that I need to buy the newest and shiniest miniature (or several) to be competitive. I don't know. What I do know is that I'm really disappointed with what Warmachine, a game I have loved for a decade, has become.

My next post will be more upbeat, I promise, but this is something I've been needing to get off my chest.

Eye of the Tiger

What my miniatures look like pre-primer.
My Friendly Local Gaming Store happened to have in two of the miniatures I needed to wrap up my Yu-Jing force for Infinity, so I went ahead and grabbed a pair of Tiger Soldiers. One is equipped with a combi-rifle / light flamethrower, and one with a heavy machine gun. Tiger Soldiers are paratroopers, and the ability to sneak an HMG behind enemy lines was just too appealing to pass up.

The pieces of the miniatures are a bit fiddly, with a pair of cylinders below the fin on their back all separate pieces. The cylinders went on easily enough after drilling some guide holes for the tabs on the end of them, but the fins were a nightmare to align properly as there is no groove on the miniatures' backs for it to set in. Once dry, it was outside for some primer. I followed up giving them the same treatment I gave the rest of the miniatures, ending up with the following results:
Now I'm only a single miniature away from finishing my force, and I picked him up today. Once I'm done with my sniper I'll be ready to start on my ALEPH force, and then I'll be able to demo the game (time permitting, of course). An ALEPH starter (seemingly impossible to locate) just came in over at The War Store, so hopefully I'll be able to wrangle one up pretty soon.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Invincible Warriors of Yu Jing


Well, I finished my Yu Jing miniatures. Instead of the orange body armor seen on the painted examples of the miniatures, I opted for a green and black color scheme. It was only after painting that I realized they ended up looking like the Salamanders Chapter of the Space Marines...

I started with the Zhanshi as these were the miniatures I cared about the least. Not that I didn't want a high-quality paint job on them, but if I did make an error on their color scheme, I'd prefer to make it now. It was while painting these miniatures that I realized the idea of actually painting them in a camouflaged color scheme was just not to be. There is just not enough flat space on these guys (or any other miniature) for that to work.

Next was the Celestial Guard model. I chose him because he would be the perfect transition from the lightly armored Zhanshi to the fully-carapaced heavy infantry.

My paint scheme was fully decided upon with this miniature. I settled upon "Uniform Green" (Vallejo Model Color #70922) body armor, brown leather (duh) red lenses on the helmets, and black weapons and cloth. The holographic displays on their arms would be the only splash of bright color on the miniatures with their orange finish.

Finally I moved on to the heavy infantry, These miniatures are pretty much all plates of armor, only broken up by tiny bits of cabling.

The cloth and guns were painted by first basecoating the areas with Citadel "Chaos Black", then drybrushing the areas with "German Grey" (Vallejo Model Color #70995) and then highlighting the sharp edges with Chaos Black mixed with "Bleached Bone" (Citadel). Once this dried, the area got a "Badab Black" (Citadel) wash.

I achieved the armor's coloration by first basecoating the areas with Uniform Green, then applying a "Thraka Green" (Citadel Color) wash. Once this dried, I went back and highlighted the armor with more Uniform Green.

Leather areas were painted "US Field Drab" (Vallejo Model Color #70873), washed with "Devlan Mud" (Citadel) and re-highlighted with more US Field Drab.

What little flesh appears on the miniatures was painted "Dwarf Flesh" (Citadel), washed with "Gryphonne Sepia" (Citadel), Highlighted with "Elf Flesh" (Citadel), and washed again with Gryphonne Sepia.

The red lenses are simply "Flat Red" (Vallejo Model Color #70957) painted onto the eyes.

Finally, the orange holo-projectors were basecoated Flat Red (this paint has amazing coverage) and highlighted with "Bloody Red" (Vallejo Game Color #72010) and finally "Blazing Orange" (Citadel).

The barrels of the weapons (and any other metallic areas) were painted with "Gunmetal Metal" (Vallejo Game Color #72054) and then washed (for lack of a better term) with "Smoke" (Tamiya Color #X-19)

The bases were my usual Drybrushing of "Earth" (Vallejo Game Color # 72062) over Chaos Black and then finishing with a light drybrush of "Khaki" (Vallejo Game Color #???- the number is worn off of my paint dropper)

A couple of areas of static grass were superglued into place on the bases, before wrapping up the paint process.

Finally, I painted around the edge of the base with Chaos Black, before drawing lines in Skull White (Vallejo Game Color #???- again, the number is worn off) to delineate the model's front arc (troops see 180 degrees to their front in Infinity).



Sorry if the step-by-step painting guide bored you, but it's as much for my reference when I pick up the last three minis for my force next month as it is for anybody who may like to mimic the results I got.

All I need now is a blister of Tiger Soldiers one with a Combi-Rifle and one with an HMG, as well as a Guilang Skirmisher with a Sniper Rifle to round out my 300 points of Yu Jing so I can move on to some ALEPH troops.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Infinite Possibilites

Well, I decided to grab some Infinity minis. More out of a sense that they're pieces of art than anything else. The squad shown above is illegal as it includes both a flamethrower and a missile launcher in such a small group, but come on, it's a girl in a skin-tight uniform with a rocket launcher. What more could you ask?

I haven't decided on a color scheme yet, but I'll likely go with dark green, khaki, and brown camouflage.

Just a quick-hitter today. I promise next time I'll have something of substance.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Okay Demitra, Now You Can Worry

eGaspy- painted and ready for action!
Well, I broke down and grabbed Lich Lord Asphyxious off my dresser and slapped some paint on him. I needed a break from homework, so what better to distract me than an Epic Warcaster?

This version of Asphyxious is darker than my Prime version, and features a lot more metal. His gigantic shoulder pads just screamed out for a bronze treatment.

All the metal was coated with Tamiya Color #X-19, Smoke. It does all the shading you'll need on a miniature, and all you may need to do is touch up some highlights. The down side to this treatment is that it leaves the mini ultra-glossy, but varnish fixes that issue.

Now to write up a list. Those Bane Thralls are seeming like a better and better choice!

They Combine, But Not Into Voltron

Victory over math and unpainted miniatures!
Just a real quick one before bed. I finished my equations which, in turn, means I got to finish the Withershadow Combine. Not my greatest paintjobs ever, but they (like the rest of my Cryx army) are intended for gaming, not to win painting contests.

...I really should get around to painting those arcs of vision on their bases...

That's all for now.

Good night.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

She's Got a "Great Rack" (Of Horns)

Well, I'm back with a quick update. Today saw a metric ton (2,200 lbs) of homework done. in between equations that ate up at least a page of paper each, I decided I'd work on a couple of models in order to clear my head of any frustration I encountered.

It seemed like a good plan. Now, I've been hearing a lot about Epic Skarre and how amazing she is. I also heard a list on Podhammer that was feared by the hosts, so I decided to give it a whirl. Now, the exact contents of this list will have to remain a secret unless you listen to the latest episode, or until after I've played a game with it. I like the theory as to how the list works (that I've been able to glean from simply parroting a list) so I set about rounding up the required models as this is a list I knew I could replicate with my collection.

Rooting through my boxes I came upon the Withershadow Combine, sadly unpainted. I've heard good things about this trio, so out of the case they came, my nominees for painting between problems. They've come along fairly nicely so far, and I'll have pictures up once they're finished.

Once these three are painted I'll have a choice- do I paint Epic Asphyxious or do I start on my Soul Hunters?

...Or maybe back to painting Anima: Tactics minis...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

New Adventures in WARMACHINE

35 points of pure pain. I hope.
I've got a WARMACHINE game coming up soon, so today I went about picking my force this morning. I ended up with what you see to the left.

This may seem strange to those who've played the game for a while, but in my 10+ year career playing WARMACHINE (it's supposed to be written in all caps) I've never, ever, used Commander Coleman Stryker. That's right, the Warcaster in the Cygnar starter box, and he's never seen the field under my control. I started using Cygnar fielding Haley, and I never really regretted it. Now, however, I must experience the power that is supposed to be Earthquake. Knocking down everything in a 5" area seems like an amazing ability, so why not give him a whirl? Stryker isn't a one-dimensional Warcaster, either. His spell selection includes a group of buffs that will be useful throughout the game.

My finalized 35 point list is as follows:

Commander Coleman Stryker - +6 Warjack Points
- Squire Warcaster Attachment (2 pts.)
- Lancer Light Warjack (6 pts.)
- Lancer Light Warjack (6 pts.)
- Ironclad Heavy Warjack (7 pts.)

10x Long Gunner Infantry (10pts.)

10x Sword Knight Infantry (6 pts.)

Eyriss, Mage Hunter of Ios Mercenary Solo (3 pts.)

Firepower is the name of the game here, with the Long Gunners getting Snipe cast on them on turn 1. Arcane Shield will be thrown up on the Sword Knights giving them an impressive ARM 19 as long as they're in base-to-bast contact with one another.

Earthquake will be used to knock down targets, getting around any Defense buffs, and those long range Long Gunner volleys should be able to deal with high Armor.

The Lancers will carry their Arc Nodes into range of Stryker's spells, and their Shock Shields will be used to annihilate enemy Cortexes.

The Ironclad is are unsubtle as you would guess. It's job is to smash the face in of any 'Jack it sees.

The Sword Knights are the close combat arm of my force, relying on their massive ARM stat to get in close to the enemy. a knocked down Warjack is a sitting duck to a unit of Sword Knights on the charge.

Finally, there's Eyriss. She just does what she does, sniping enemy models, disrupting enemy Warjacks and Warcasters, and generally being a hassle.

I'm hoping this army will do what I want it to, but we'll see soon enough.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Two Posts in One Day! This Time: Skaven at 2,500 points!

2, 500 points of Skaven. Also Mr. Frog- one of my ferret's favorite toys.
My last game at Games Workshop kind of caught my opponent off-guard. You see, they've been playing 2,500 point games there in preparation for that tournament that's coming up. I really want to get more familiar with my Skaven, as they're my favorite Games Workshop race, so I decided to write up a 2,500 point army for them.

I sat down with my "army construction software" and began to crank out an army list. As usual, it focuses on heavy hitters surrounding what is more or less a bunker for my Grey Seer.

This is a fairly standard list, it just incorporates some units which are regarded on the internet as... less than effective. Personally, I like them, so in they went.

Lords
1x Grey Seer w/ Power Scroll, Talisman of Preservation, Ironcurse Icon (325 pts.)

Heroes
1x Chieftain w/ Battle Standard, shield, Sword of Might, Foul Pendant (122 pts.)
1x Warlock Engineer (lvl. 2 Wizard) w/ Warp-Energy Condenser (120 pts.)
1x Warlock Engineer w/ Doomrocket (45 pts.)
1x Assassin w/ Blade of Corruption, The Other Trickster's Shard (170 pts.)

Core
53x Clanrats w/ full command, shields, Poisoned Wind Mortar weapon team (314.5 pts.)
40x Clanrats w/ full command, shields, Warpfire Thrower weapon team (270 pts.)
40x Skavenslaves (80 pts.)
40x Skavenslaves (80 pts.)

Special
7x Gutter Runners w/ slings, poisoned attacks (126 pts.)
6x Rat Ogres & 4x Packmasters w/ Master-Bred Rat Ogre (287 pts.)

Rare
1x Hell Pit Abomination (235 pts.)
1x Hell Pit Abomination (235 pts.)
1x Warp-Lightning Cannon (90 pts.)

Total: 2,499.5 pts.

As usual, my army is led by a Grey Seer. I know he's a magnet for enemy fire and spells, but Curse of the Horned Rat is just too good a spell to pass up, especially for dealing with elite units like Tzeentch Chosen or Phoenix Guard. Just cast it with a Power Scroll, get Irresistible Force, and watch your troubles melt away. Sure, you'll blow up some Clanrats, but they're Clanrats- plenty more where they came from!

The Warlock Engineers carry their usual kit, so they can be skipped.

New to the army is an Assassin. I've armed mine with the Blade of Corruption, so every wound he inflicts (at Strength 5) is doubled. Sure, there's the possibility of him rolling two ones and killing himself, but with his re-rolls to hit in melee, he should be fine. He also carries The Other Trickster's Shard, a personal favorite of mine. Forcing an enemy model to re-roll all passed ward saves should help power through those doubled wounds, hopefully killing the target instantly. Should he fail, he's a whopping 170 points given up, but that just means I'll have to be careful where I reveal him- going after softer targets like battle standards rather than Lord-level models.

My core choices remain the same, so no comment needed there other than that this time I've included a Warpfire Thrower to deal with multiple wound and/or regenerating models.

My Special choices are again unremarkable other than the fact that I've upgraded one of my Rat Ogres to a Master-Bred Rat Ogre. This gives the unit a champion capable of standing up to hero-level characters in a challenge and tearing the limb-from-limb. With his vastly improved stat-line, I feel he's the only Monstrous Infantry champion worth his points.

Rare is more or less unchanged except for adding a second Hell Pit Abomination. I've heard that running two gives your opponents fits, so I scrounged up my scratch-built one from before there was an official model and threw it into the army.

There you have it, my 2,500 point Skaven army. Maybe I'll even get a game in with it once I start understanding this math course I'm in...

Ogres Vs. Orcs: Mini Battle Report

Battle lines are drawn
After a total drubbing at the hands of my regular fantasy opponents' Orc & Goblin army, I challenged him to a rematch- this time using my Ogres!

Early in the day I went to my less than local Games Workshop location for a warm-up match. My opponent, much to my surprise, was also using Ogres. Instead of the more balanced approach I had opted for, he went for the total Gut-Star, deployed in Horde formation (6 wide, 4 deep if I recall correctly). I forgot to strip the unit of its buff spells during my magic phase, so the Gut-Star was impossible for me to deal with. I lost in a total massacre.

Needless to say, this dampened my spirits immensely going into my rematch.

We started by discussing what models were where in our armies (who was my Battle Standard Bearer, who was his, etc.) and then began deploying terrain.  I rolled a 6 when determining the number of terrain items, resulting in us to needing ten pieces of terrain for the battle.

Now, contrary to people's belief at my not-so-local G. W., randomly generating terrain is an OPTIONAL rule, so instead we opted to just choose from whatever terrain was available. This led to the usual jungle-themed board we're used to. Also, as usual, we agreed that random types of forests is a stupid rule, so all forests would be "normal" forests. Random forests just tends to clutter up the game, and adds an unnecessary level of complexity to an already complex game, so might as well just remove that hiccup altogether.

We then rolled for scenario, and got "Battleline". Cool, a simple scenario. Just bash your opponents' skulls in. Perfect for Orcs & Goblins vs. Ogre Kingdoms.

Yes, we set up terrain and rolled for scenario in reverse order, but it tends to lead to a more interesting battlefield, so as far as I'm concerned it's okay. Also, we have a standing agreement that "The Watchtower" is a stupid scenario, so we would re-roll it if it came up.

My opponent won the roll to deploy first, and we set about forming our battle lines. I opted to have my Ironguts hold the center of the line, flanked by my Bulls. The Leadbelchers would attempt to get a few potshots in at the Black Orcs, and then, after thinning out their numbers, would attempt to off anything that stayed in the Orc & Goblin backfield (in particular that stone thrower).

Having deployed fewer units and finishing setup before my opponent, I easily won the roll to go first with the +1 modifier. My army advanced toward the center confidently. In my magic phase I began throwing up buffs on my units, preparing for the coming onslaught of choppas. My Slaughtermaster took a pair of wounds from casting spells, but I was confident that with his Bloodcleaver he'd be back in fighting shape in no time.

The Orc & Goblin line advanced in kind, releasing the three fanatics from the mass of Night Goblins in which his Battle Standard Bearer had bunkered up. One impacted my rightmost Bulls, inflicting a single wound before dying in the forest behind them. The other two sat in front of the Night Goblins, ruining my hopes at getting a charge in against the weedy little things. The Trolls ambled forward daring me to charge them.

Uh-oh. This could be very bad indeed.
During The Orc & Goblin Magic Phase I managed to fend off the Foot of Gork (or whatever it's called, I don't own the book) managing to keep the greenskin deity from flattening my Ironguts. It took all my Dispel dice to do this though, so The Hand of Gork easily went through, moving the Warboss' unit behind my lines. Behind my Tyrant's Irongut unit, to be precise. This coming charge could be a game-ender if I didn't quickly reform to face the coming threat.

The Orc & Goblin shooting managed to put a pair of wounds on the Leadbelchers, and killed an Irongut.


Over to my turn, and my Tyrant failed his re-rollable Leadership 9 Stupidity test (he's a Mawseeker, you see). He and his Ironguts wandered forward six inches, setting up a perfect Orc charge. Oh, no. My left flank Bulls charged the Trolls, hoping to blow through into the Common Goblin unit sheltering the Great Shaman behind them.

The rest of my battleline held position. My Slaughtermaster continued to throw up buffs, taking another wound which he negated with the Bloodgruel spell.

Shooting led to both Leadbelcher units unloading into the Black Orcs, felling three of the brutes. That did not go as well as I had planned...

In the ensuing combat between the Trolls and the Bull Ogres, my opponent swung with two trolls at my Slaughtermaster failing to wound him even a single time. So much for that assassination attempt! The Bulls handily defeated the Trolls, and they fled sending my Bull Ogres into the Common Goblins behind.

It was now over to the Orc & Goblin turn, during which the inevitable happened. The mass of orcs with two Choppas each rushed the rear of my Irongut unit. This was very bad news. The Black Orcs charged my Leadbelchers, who fled, and the charge was redirected into my Bull Ogres, only managing to get a few into combat due to a bad charge roll.

The Magic Phase for the Orcs & Goblins was very short due to a lack of valid targets for spells, as was the Shooting Phase, so on to close combat.

My Tyrant used his Make Way! movement to get into the fighting rank, while the battle standard toting Bruiser stayed away from the ruckus. Shouting out a challenge to any who would dare face him in close combat, he was shocked to be paired up against the Orc Warboss. Hmmmm... He must have something up his sleeve. After a flurry of blows from the Warboss, modified by a -1 to-hit modifier from the Tyrant's Glittering Scales, and failure to wound due to the Tyrant's Toughness of 6, the Warboss stood dumbfounded. Now it was the Tyrant's turn. With his 5 attacks at a whopping Strength of 7 the Tyrant inflicted three wounds. Two of those wounds were save by the 4+ Ward save. Unfortunately for the Warboss, the Tyrant had brought The Other Trickster's Shard, which forces a re-roll of all successful Ward saves. A second wound was let through the Warboss' magical protection, and once multiblied into D3 wounds each, the Warboss fell with 5 wounds inflicted on him. Combined with the Ironguts' ability to slaughter Orcs, the Overkill bonus was enough to win the combat for the Ogres. The Orcs held. and the Ironguts reformed to face the now Strength 3 Orcs.

The Black Orcs killed a Bull Ogre in their combat, but between the Tyrant's Leadership of 9 and the battle standard's re-roll, they held their ground.

From here the battle is a blur, as I forgot to take pictures from this point on. My Ogres continued to throw up buffs, and the Bloodcleaver continued to restore wounds lost to Gut Magic spells on my Slaughtermaster.

The Bulls on the right flank finally broke from the Black Orcs' onslaught, and they fled the battlefield.

The Common Goblins were broken by the now Strength 5 Bulls, who elected not to pursue, as they were getting out of my Slaughtermaster's range to buff up my army, and were about to get charged by a Giant. The Giant did indeed rush the Bulls, but after a failed "Thump With Club" attempt the Ogres were able to shred the Giant handily. Luckily the Giant died falling away from combat, and failed to squish any Ogres.

The Ironguts annhilated the Night Goblins, taking both their standard and the battle standard.

The now Strenght 7 Bull Ogres crashed into the rear of the Black Orcs, and the game was called.

Endgame 
This battle went a lot better than my last two games. I was able to get up, and keep up, my Gut Magic spells, and this helped me deal with the Orcs' immense hitting power on the first round of every combat. The hero as well as the zero of the match is definitely the Tyrant. He almost lost me the game, but with his immense close combat prowess he managed to avert disaster.

This was a much closer game than it appeared, as had some vital Orc spells gone off, of had they gone off with more effect, I would have lost the game immediately. I was incredibly lucky on two occasions when Gork's Warpath failed to kill my Ironguts, despite going off with Irresistible Force.

In the end it was a hard-fought battle for both sides, and an enjoyable game. Thanks to my opponent for a most enjoyable evening!