Saturday, August 25, 2012

Dark Angel Debacle?

Guess who's back.
Well, it's been a while since I painted anything, and it'll be a while before I get another game in, so I decided to rummage through my gaming cabinet. While in there I stumbled upon my long neglected Deathwing army. Feeling sorry for them, I pulled them out and started playing around with army lists in Army Builder. I was shocked to find that I was but a single squad away from a (hopefully) fully functional 2,000 point Deathwing army. Now, I haven't used them in a while, mainly because they regularly get the tar knocked out of them, but since Dark Vengance is on it's way (the new 40k boxed set) I decided to finish my army. Honestly, there's not too much in there I'm really interested except for that gorgeous looking squad of terminators. Them and the portable rulebook. Well, there's that Hellbrute for my Plague Marines too...

As usual I digress. Inspired, I ran over to my FLGW and grabbed a box of Assault Terminators. This time they would be outfitted for killing stuff properly. I eagerly went about putting them together, outfitting the sergeant and three veteran marines with Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields, and the final marine with a Heavy Flamer and Chainfist. Nothing would stand before my glorious legion! Nothing, I say!

Now they sit, fully assembled, based, and primed (in bonewhite) waiting for the tender caress of a paintbrush. I hope to get some work done on them tonight, but one thing stands in my way- I no longer have any of the dip I used on the rest of the army! It dried in the can months ago, and there's just no way I can rationalize spending another $40 or so on a can for a single squad.

This has led me to ponder color matching. How can I approximate the same color I got from the dip with the paints I already have? I'm thinking some really thinned down Devlan Mud, but the color just isn't the same and I really need to save that jar for my SSU infantry. No, what I really need here is some homemade dip.

I still remember the recipe, it's not that hard. Just add the desired color to some acrylic floor wax. the issue of color again arises. can I find just the right shade of brown to match the Army Painter dip? Only time will tell...

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Looking Toward 6th Edition

Not my plane. Taken from
Well, 6th edition 40k is here, and people are extolling its virtues left and right. Pre-measuring is in, fliers fly, and you can shoot at charging enemies. All that sounds cool and all, but what does it mean for my Dark Eldar?

I've been doing some pondering, and it has led me to a few conclusions.

First of all, I am afraid of fliers. Only being able to use snap fire to engage areal threats with my current army just seems a little sub-optimal. I'd have to dedicate pretty much every lance in my army to taking the thing down, and that seems like a bad idea. The alternative is to totally disregard the threat, which seems like a worse idea. Because of this it seems that one of my Ravagers will have to be removed from my army in favor of... Well, if you paid attention to the image up top it's pretty obvious- a Razorwing. I'm not quite sure as to the exact configuration of its weapons (do I go with a Splinter Cannon or a Night Shield?) but I am sure that I need a flier. Especially with a Stormraven kicking around Demitra's home somewhere.
Yes, I could use an Aegis Defense Line, but that's just so.. un-fluffy. I may not be a fluff Nazi, but I'm not going to go that far.

Second is that Dark Eldar were, have been, and always will be a harassing, evasive, mechanized army. I've seen players attempt to run their armies on foot, and that's just not going to work. They're fragile in melee, and now that they've lost the ability to run a true Webway Portal army to save them once they get up close, they need to play keep-away even more. I knew I was getting into a finesse army when I started buying these models, and I'm not upset that we remain fragile. It's the Dark Eldar thing. I'm a tiny bit miffed that they can be glanced out of the air now, but it's not all that far of from the days of 3rd and 4th edition where a glancing 6 would knock your transports out of the sky. Sure, now it's pretty much a given that small arms fire will knock your ride down, but you can pre-measure distances now, and with that up your sleeve you should be able to keep the enemy at arm's length until you swoop in for the killing blow.
This is not a Footdar army. We don't have Aspect Warriors to save our infantry (who have bad armor saves and poor leadership). Sure there are some backups (Beast packs, Grotesques), but they cannot be relied on. Keep moving, and if a squad gets downed, leave it for dead. Keep in the Dark Eldar mindset- kill them all, those too weak to survive are just as well dead.

Finally, and related to my last thought is this; table your opponent. You want him to have no models left on the board at the end of the game. This assures you a win, and is really quite fluffy. Ignore those silly objectives. You're here to inflict as much pain as possible. Do it.

Any way, those are my thoughts on how Dark Eldar will transition to 6th edition. I;m sure that there are much more wizened generals that myself who will cry foul at my tactics, and I will admit that this is based entirely on my loose understanding as to how the new 40k works. For now however I will focus on running my army throughout these last few months of 5th edition that Demitra and I will play.

Maybe Dust Warfare too.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Fully Painted (And It Feels So Good)

...And there we have it. Three hundred points of Dust SSU minis fully painted and ready to hit the table.

I'm pleased with how the entire force came out looking coherent (limiting your color pallet will do that) and I also like how the army breaks down into two 150 point platoons. I'll have to play some games first, but I'm already considering dropping the transport helicopter in favor of another pair of Rifle Squads. Either that or another KV47 walker, but who knows?

Now I need to lay hands on those SSU transfers (or at least some Soviet transfers) in order to fill in those last few details. Once the transfers are in place and Dullcoted down, the army is done!

...Well, at least until that stinking ground attack helicopter is released.

...And that heavy tank- that looks cool.

...Oh, don't forget Winter Child...

Well, the army will be done for the time being, anyhow.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Get To The Chopper!

That's right, it's another painting roundup. Today I have two completed units to show off.

First up is the SSU Transport Helicopter. The canopy's glass is still soaking in Simple Green, so you'll just have to imagine it there. I painted the interior of the cockpit, otherwise I wouldn't be so obsessed with the glass bit. The Simple Green has yet to put a dent in the fog on the glass, but I figure I'll give it a week or so before I give up.

Next up is my SSU Close Combat Squad. These fellows have blue Molotov Cocktail bottles, whereas the next squad will probably have green ones.

That's it for today's painting. Now I just need to get those decals and that can of Dullcote...

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Dust Warfare News

The mini that will never be?
Well, I've almost finished the Dust minis I have, and more are in the mail (hopefully they'll be here soon) and I've hit a roadblock. I need the SSU ground attack helicopter pictured above, but it's been "at the manufacturer" for months now. I've followed the minis for a while before Demitra proposed getting into the game, simply because Andy Chambers wrote the system. What's even more irksome is that the Red Guard miniatures as well as the heavy tanks are coming out before the chopper. This annoys me because these minis have no Dust Warfare rules, and won't until December. The company, in my opinion, really ought to finish releasing the stuff with rules before they release models without them. Now, I understand that the nuances of fabricating these things is well beyond my ken, but were I to be running Dust Studio or FFG I'd be applying some boot leather to some rumps right about now.

In other news, I messed up my transport helicopter yesterday. I thought the "glass" on the canopy was permanently attached to the "metal" part of the cockpit. Imagine my surprise when I turned over the part only to realize the clear plastic popped out and in. Of course, this was after I had varnished the entire assembly, and now I'm left with a cloudy canopy. Rats. The clear plastic is sitting in a Simple Green bath right now in the hopes the varnish will get eaten off, but I don't hold out too much hope.

I also found that Dust Studio does in fact put out decals. I'll be ordering some of the SSU sheets to slap on before I put on the layer of Dullcote that finishes the models up. I'm really looking forward to having everything for the game wrapped up, and then heading out to get some games in. I may even use (*gasp*) unpainted minis and proxy my transport helicopter as a ground attack helicopter (heresy!). That, of course, is dependant upon how long it takes the ol' USPS takes to get my last two units to me.

Finally, I'm trying to decide how to differentiate my two Close Combat Squads and my two Battle Squads from one another. I was thinking of perhaps marking their bases or giving them some sort of distinguishing mark on them, which would be easy on the Close Combat Squads (different colored Molotov cocktail bottles) but on the Battle Squad I'm just not sure. Hopefully something will come to me soon.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

More SSU Goodness

Today I finished a bit more of my SSU stuff. First off, let's take a look at Grand'Ma. This was the first mini I completed (actually a couple of days ago) and it got much the same treatment as my previous KV47 walker.

Not too much more to say about her.

Next up we have my SSU Command Squad. These guys were a bit of a hassle to paint. There are cables running all over the place on the mechanic and the radio operator. These I decided to do in red since that's the color I chose for the sulfur canisters on the walkers.

Finally, we come to my snipers. They're just proof that FFG reuses the same parts in different combinations to make squads. In this case we have the helmeted head rather than the one wearing a cap on the Widowmaker bodies.

Not to say I can blame them (it's a cost cutting measure) but it is a thing that sort of stands out on the tabletop.

Any way, that's it for today. Now off to sell my Skorne!