Saturday, 15 December 2012

Warmachine : Its alright

Well a lot has happened since my last post. I've moved, bought a car (for the missus) and am now super poor. On the plus side I managed to get a game of Warmachine the other week. Finally used the models I bought in 2003.

Overall impression? Its ok. Its not amazing and I know little to none of the background so that didn't help. It kinda reminds me of how 40K was back in 1st edition with keeping track of vehicle damage etc.
To be honest I didn't take much in as I was quite tired from work and its not easy absorbing new rules in that state.

I've not been doing much painting at the mo, mostly due to all my paints etc being packed away. I was starting to paint some more Warhammer Empire before we moved.

Oh and had a surprising result from GW. Sent back some Vanguard Vets about 6 weeks ago as they were hideously deformed "Finecast". Anyway didn't hear much from them after 2 weeks to emailed them and they replied that they'd got no record of receiving them but sent me a new set anyway :) The downside is that the replacement was only a mild improvement but could be worse.

No plans to get a game before the new year. Too many things on (plus I started playing Eve Online again which takes up some time :D)

Looks like the Intermittent in Intermittent Wargammer is back ;)

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

All quiet on the northern front....

Not much to report at present. I've not managed a game in a while now, mostly due to time constraints.
I have been tuned in to the idea that Sanguinary Priests are a really good idea and am currently resurrecting one from eBay. The idea is that this will go with my assault squad to help them last a little longer.

I'm also returning to my Warhammer Empire army which has taken a back seat for the last few months. Ideally is like to paint what I currently have in order to complete my "only play with what you've painted rule" (which so far has been a success).

I've also decided to finally finish and paint a Warmachine starter army I picked up back in 2003 and never did anything with.

Having said all this I'm find it very hard to be excited by anything currently. Even pc gaming is proving to be dull but I suspect this is more down to my job being a big fat let down (but that's a whole 'nother story.

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Post match thoughts

After my game last night, I've thought a bit more a out my options. One thing that was glaringly obvious is my lack of a way to get my troops to where they need to be without getting shot to pieces.

6th edition is definitely more shooty than its predecessors and the Blood Angels strengths still lie in close combat. Therefore the main focus is how to get the troops into position safely. The obvious answer is transports and I've been working on this. The downside to this in 6th is that troops cannot assault from dusbarking a Rhino anymore. This means the only options for this are Land Raiders and Stormravens. With both of these being rather expensive (both money and points wise) I'm beginning to wonder if there's another option: distraction.

I didn't arrive at this view all by myself but with the aid of John from the club. I was reminded that in most if my games, my Death Company was usually the target of much fire and attention, as they tried to get into charge range. I began to wonder if there is a other unit I could use to worry the enemy and make them focus on them rather than my assault units.
John from the club reminded me that u still had no Baal Predators. For Blood Angels these are cheap, fast and with rending on the Assault Cannons, quite versatile. At 115 points for a basic unit you can field 2 of these for every Land Raider. Admittedly they are less well protected than a LR but you get 2. That's 2 targets and 2 ways to distract and harass the enemy.

Anyway this is my current plan. I also need to finish building my magnetised Furioso Dreadnought and start my Sanguinary Guard.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

The Best Laid Plans ...

Managed to get a game tonight of 2000 pts worth of 40k. To be honest I kinda threw a list together at the last minute and it was mostly all I had assembled and painted.

Stephen fielded a vast array of Imperial Guard against me and I was indeed greatly out numbered. Thanks to John, I had fielded most of my army to one side (furthest away from Stephens tanks) and also my Death Company in my Stormraven.
To cut a long story short, I forgot that this game was based on objectives rather than kill points and should have focused on that rather than trying to take units out.

The trouble currently is that my games are all rushed due to catching the bus home. I now have a job and hope to be moving soonish so this will eventually fix this problem but it means that I don't really have time for games right now.

Friday, 14 September 2012

The grass is always greener

Or at least more appealing. I've been looking at allies for my Blood Angels recently. I guess it's down to that whole "oooh shiny" approach to things where new stuff always looks nicer. I did pick up an Eldar Codex from eBay to see what my options are, however I think it's more likely that I would use this to start a new army some day, as I suspect the points would be better spent on more Blood Angels.

On a similar theme I re-discovered my stash of Orks that I've had for about 3 years. I totalled up the points and I have about 750, in an unpainted state. Not bad. I think I still have the codex for it but it's packed away in storage until we move (hopefully soon now I have a job). So I think it would be best to concentrate on this for an alt army. It's not ideal as they are a close combat army much like the Blood Angels but with more bodies and less armour. Still I've always liked the custom and conversion aspect of creating an ork army, and my best successes were with Orks in 3rd edition. Mind you in those games it wasn't so much tactical genius as "how many Orks can we get into close combat as soon as possible?"

Still with the new flyers it could be interesting. I still like the look of Necrons and miss my BattleFleet Gothic Necron fleet. Yes they are a bit overpowered in 6th edition and everyone and their dog seems to be fielding some but the fluff is quite fun. Same with Tau, although they desperately need a new codex. I doubt I will collecting a new army for quite some time tho, due to finance etc.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Flyers are fun!


Played a 1200 point game last night and got to try out my Stormraven (fully built and mostly painted but needs some hyper detailing work and fine painting).

I was playing Paul with his never been tested Eldar army which he's currently building. Things started off well with my terminators advancing and holding their own and my Razorback (now with assault cannon borrowed from my Land Raider) having fun with with his ... something canons (I can barely remember my own stuff let alone someone else's!)

Things seemed to go even better for me when my Stormraven appeared and put the boot in, but its at this point things seemed to go wrong in terms of our interpretation of the rules. I was under the impression that the Blood<something> missiles on the Stormraven were a blast template weapon... when they're not. We only discovered this 2 turns later when we realised that instead of wiping out a whole unit of Screaming Banshees, I should have killed just one!
Oops. Paul was very good about it all and we agreed to keep playing.

In the end I discovered that the Spirit walker things are quite hard to kill being monstrous creatures with a Toughness of 8! This meant that my Death Company was stuck in combat flailing against it uselessly (as the one powerfist got killed in the first strike).

Still it was quite handy. I had to leave to catch the bus home so we ended at the end of turn 4. Technically even with not counting the banshees, I won by 3 VPs to 2 but it was a game full of not really knowing our armies.

I do quite like the Eldar army and I discovered today that the bits and bobs I have for Eldar amount to more points than what I do for Tau (the choice was between the two for an allied army). Oddly this is despite having more models for Tau.

Also Maelstrom games also taking 4 weeks to deliver one box of scouts so I cancelled the order as well as a new one I made for a Baal Predator. Whether they return my money or not is another matter as they said they've done so but I've not seen it come back into my account.
So with that in mind Im likely to invest in some Eldar stuff.

Stormraven Building

[Note I wrote this post over a week ago but for some reason forgot to post it, so here it is]

Played another game last Wednesday with the very nice James from Ireland, but got another complete whooping. This was even more complete than last time with barely one unit remaining after 3 turns and me only taking out one unit of Dark Eldar ... somethings (still no idea about armies I've never played with).

James was an awesome guy to play against and he offered some advice on my army composition after the game (he seems to have played with every army). He said I was still lacking any anti-armour weaponry. I thought I may have solved this with the Whirlwind I deployed this time (cunningly using the painted old missile part from the kit I've been bashing, with the body from my Razorback). However I was wrong as I completely forgot that the Whirlwind is more anti-troop rather than anti-tank.

With this is mind I would eventually like to get some Baal Predators but with funds currently being low thats not an option for now. James suggested a Cyclone Missile Launcher on a Terminator, which is a cheap idea. Previously I'd only seen these on eBay for £8+ but found and got one the other day for just £2! so that should help.

SOOOOo with all that in mind I thought it was time to start the Stormraven I got 6 weeks ago. One of the first things I discovered is that, for Games Workshop, this is a complicated kit. Its much more complicated if (like me) you want to paint things like the interior and magnetise the weapon choices. This has led to some creative use of magnets and painting things before assembly. I'd say I'm currently about halfway through making it (with a deadline of a week Wednesday to get it done by). Its certainly a good kit and I wonder if I didn't have a deadline I could really go to town on this model, but in the end, while I have pride of work I'd much rather have it done to be played with. (so far my mantra of "only play with what you've painted" is mostly working)

I'm still waiting on my very cheap scouts (with sniper rifles) that I ordered from Maelstrom Games a couple of weeks ago. Note I'm now refusing to order from Total Wargamer any more after a saga involving a missing StromTalon, a 6 week wait and a lot of wasted emails and phone calls. Luckily I discovered that Blood Angels can't field one of these flyers so in the end I cancelled the order and got refunded postage.

I also painted the unit of 10 assault troops I got 2nd hand off eBay. I don't think I'll buy 2nd hand like that again as they were a real pain in the arse to work with. Plus as I've found, 10 assault troops don't really make that much difference. You would need to have nearly your entire army as assault for them to be viable I think.


Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Pros and Cons of Buying Second Hand Miniatures

Been thinking about this a lot recently as I made another purchase of some 2nd hand assault marines on eBay. Sooooo I decided to write a pros and cons post about it all.
Note these are mostly about minis bought on eBay or other online trading sites. The can apply to models picked up at wargames shows and the like but there you have a bit more discretion.

PROs

- They're cheap. Generally speaking you can save 30 -40% off retail prices by buying 2nd hand. This is usually dictated by the quality of paint job on them.

- They're ready made. No wasting time clipping and gluing. You should be able to strip off any paint (if any) and paint away. You may even be able to game with them if the painting is good.

- They can be "Out of Print". This is actually bigger now than it has been thanks to GWs disastrous deployment of Finecast as a metal replacement. You can pick up a lot of the current range in metal (which is easier to strip) and also get hold of some unique older minis.

CONs

- Nasty Nasty paint jobs. 9 times out of 10 you're going to get models that appear to have been painted by a blind chimp. Unless you pay over the odds for a good paint job, this is usually the reason for their cheapness. On metal models this isn't an issue as good old Nitromors can strip that back to shiny new but plastic is a other problem. There are many ways to get paint off plastic models (Mr Muscle Kitchen Cleaner being my favourite) but the success of this can be greatly varied. This is mostly due to the fact you have no idea how many layers of paint or varnish are on there as they be 3rd or even 4th hand.

- They may still need cleaning up. This is more likely than not as most seem to be assembled by less than savvy modellers. Parts are often left with sprue tags and huge mold lines in them and any modeller worth their salt will want to clean these up. This is often hampered by the fact that the model is assembled, making it harder to clean properly.

- No choice on loadout. No sprues mean no spare parts, and therefore little choice in what the model looks like or what weapons it carries. This has the added problem of no spare bits for other projects either.


So there you go. Personally I've bought my last set of second hand plastics. I think the money you save is out of proportion with the lack of choice, extra clean up time and general shabbiness of what you end up with. I'll happily keep buying kits on sprues and metal models, but no more plastics.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Design Decisions

Sorry for the lack of posts recently. Sadly I've been away due to a family bereavement so have not had time for any hobby items.

Before I left I picked up an old mk1 Whirlwind tank. I've not seen this model since the days of Rogue Trader but it was cheap and I thought I could retrofit it or something. As you may be able to make out from the pic, the model is in less than ideal condition. The metal can be cleaned up with Nitromors quite easily (after chipping off layers of superglue). The plastic is a different matter.

I've managed to separate off the sides of the tank and remove one set of headlights (as they were glued on back to front) but its a bit of a state. I've gotten hold of some cheap thin plasticard and intend to make additions to the tank to make it fit with the rest of the army. My problem is that I don't have an overall design in my head. I'd like to get stuck in but cutting plastic and gluing without a plan will undoubtedly make it worse.

I'm going to see about building a 3D model on the pc first to see what any potential changes look like.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Double vision

Played a doubles game tonight. 2000pts (1000 a piece) of 6th ed 40k.
It was nearly a 3 player game as we were shy on a 4th player, but then a young un came in with 500 of borrowed Tau so it was ok.
It quickly became apparent that the 12 year old didn't really know the rules for the Tau. This was complicated by the fact he only had a 3rd edition Codex with him. Still we soldiered on with us trying to encourage him along.

My dreadnought was once again killed before it even fired a shot. My death company also failed to get into combat and were killed when the unit they were just about to assault, failed a panic test and fell back, leaving the DCs open to be shot to pieces (by an impressive 90 shots).

By this point the young un had lost interest in the game and was flicking through the new rulebook. We managed to get him to roll dice when he needed to but it made the game drag on too long. We'd only just got to the end of turn 2 when I had to leave to catch my bus home. (2.5 hours play time).

Bit of a shame really. I feel a mixture of thoughts about younger players. Club rules state that they should be helped and encouraged and I agree with that but it's difficult when they're not responsive to how club gaming works (ie arranging games prior to turning up, making an army list, actively taking part in the whole game). In this instance it kinda feels like his mum is dumping him here as a sitting service. While I have no doubt he likes the models and the background, he doesn't have presence of mind to carry a game off (maybe its too much for a 12 year old?)

Anyway I'm a little disappointed that we didn't get to finish the game properly (as far as I know it's still going on) but it's ok :) Have discovered that Marine Scout snipers are badass. Watching a unit take out a Dark Eldar transport in the first turn was quite impressive.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Crazyness of gamers.

In other news, I sold the bag and dice that came with my gamers edition of 40k. I popped it on ebay, starting at £25 with a buy it now of £90.

It sold 2 hours later to a guy in Australia. o.O

That means I now have a bit of cash to spend on my army, which is nice. So I've ordered a decent number of models (some second hand to bring the cost down) which should be here soon. In theory I should be able to field 2000 points with this new kit. Nice :)

Building the Landraider

I picked up a Landraider a couple of months ago but have not gotten around to building it yet, so I began to do so the other day. I took note from my Drop Pod building issues and decided to paint as I built with this project.

Its the first time I've built a Landraider so its a bit of a learning curve. I also had to decide which variant to build (as this was the Redeemer/Crusader set). In the end I've decided to go with the Redeemer setup. The reason for this is that, after an amount of online research, I've discovered that a Landraider is first and foremost a troop transport and a tank second. With this in mind it doesn't really matter which weapons I use. As I plan on using this to get my terminators into combat ASAP I figured large flamey cannons would be a better option than a load of bolters. The likelyhood is that it will be blown up before shooting anyway so its not a biggie.

I did attempt to see if the weapons could be magnetised but even with 2mm magnets it was exceptionally difficult. In the event I figured it wouldn't make that much difference, so I decided to go with one set up.

Issues I've run into so far are the top plate of the tank didn't fit amazingly well and the kit coming with one track section missing. Luckily I was able to sort both issues and I think it should be finished in the next day or two.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Well and truly spanked

Well my first game of Warhammer 40,000 could have gone a little better. In fact it could have gone a lot better.

I was playing John (from my local club) at 1000 pts of the new 6th edition. He took Necrons and I took my Blood Angels.

Essentially I made some terrible tactical decisions that effected the whole game. Firstly I decided to Deep Strike both my Terminators and my Death Company. John later said to me that in small games this is pointless as it means the opponent can concentrate their fire on the remaining units.... which he did.

Secondly I failed to move my bikers in the first turn. This was mostly due to me trying to be clever a la my Fantasy game a few weeks ago. Sadly this didn't work here and the bikers were shot to pieces before I got anywhere.

The game ended with every one of my units dead and only a few models of Johns dead (I killed one unit and merely damaged others).

There were some funny moments, such as my Death Company completely failing to charge into combat TWICE even tho the enemy was only 4" away!

Some good lessons learned and it was great to get to grips with the new rules. I look forward to more games.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

6th edition postmortem

Well my 6th gamers edition finally arrived on the Tuesday after the Saturday release (thanks GW mail order ). There's a lot to say about this so I'll split this into 2 areas; the physical product and the actual rules.

The gamers edition came with a nice bag and some "limited edition" dice (which are red instead of black). The bag is in the style of a Cadian officers message bag and is well built, with both an imperial eagle or chaos symbol to attach to the front.
The dice come in a tin which is supposed to represent a lasgun cartridge. The effect is ok but it feels a little cheap, made from thin tin with a simple sliding plastic top. It also came with "pewter" objective dice holders, but I think painted plastic is more accurate.

The book itself is quite a tome. Size wise it's about the same as the current Warhammer fantasy book, with a page marker/tassel as well. It contains quite a lot of fluff but I was a bit disappointed to find that it tended to repeat itself, giving the impression that they were fillers to keep the page count up. I didn't find any evidence for the "leaked" idea that the Tau were recognised by the Emperor (just before fighting Horus) as being a species immune to Chaos and issued a protection order. Bit of a shame but it's ok

Now for the rules themselves. There's a lot of ranting on the net at the mo by die hard competitive gamers. They say the rules are unbalanced and too "cinematic". From my first read through it would appear they may be right BUT I don't think it matters. This edition is all about one thing ; Fun. It reminds me so much of when I used to play 1st, 2nd and 3rd editions, when it was all about the experience and less about having a clear "winner". Yes this is bound to upset people who's idea of 40k is sitting in a big hall with loads of other players with the idea to find an overall winner. That aspect of gaming has never really appealed to me and I'm glad GW have moved away from it as there was almost this undercurrent that if you didn't play competitively you were a lesser wargamer. In my opinion they can always keep playing 5th if they want to play that way.

So far I've yet to play a game myself so this opinion might change. I've a game on tomorrow so we will see.

Monday, 2 July 2012

I stand corrected

It would appear that demand for the collectors edition of 6th ed Warhammer 40k is quite high. I base this on the number of collectors editions being sold on eBay right now. Some are going for over £300 but I noticed that these are ones shipping worldwide so I'm guessing it's the American market buying this.
Seeing as they cost £80 to buy its not a bad return. If I'd thought about it more i could have done the same but I was sure that they wouldn't be so much in demand due to my experience with the fantasy version.

I'm guessing this will not last and in 6 months time you won't be able to sell one for more than £50.

Am I tempted to flog my gamers edition? Not really. I quite like the look of it and it's something I want to own. Besides I've still not received it yet which is a little annoying. I'll be camped out by the letterbox most of today :)

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Its a comin!

Got an email this morning saying my 6th edition has been dispatched. :D

Yay.

In other news, given that 6th edition has a bigger emphasis on psykers I thought I'd better get myself a Librarian (Space Marine Psyker). I found a nice old lead miniature on eBay and picked that up.

I also noticed a number of people selling their old 5th edition rulebooks there as well. At £9 posted I still think its a bit much and will wait til they come down in price before picking one up.

Also noticed one enterprising person had put a 6th edition Collectors version on there. He stated that he had not recieved it yet (so no pictures) but would post once he got it. Asking price ? £170 plus postage. Given these were going for £80 from GW Im not sure he's gonna get many takers. Ok admittedly GW has now sold out of the Collectors and Gamers editions (leading to much moaning on Facebook, although they sold out yesterday and they've been available to pre-order since Saturday so I've no idea what these people have been waiting for!) but I think no one will want to pay out that much. I'd say £100 is possible but as I have said before, I don't rate the collectors editions. You can see plenty of 5th ed collectors going for £20 or £30 now and even the Collectors edition of Warhammer Fantasy doesn't command a good resale value (currently going for about £30 ish - When I sold mine I only made about £55-60 for it and that was only 6 months after release).

Anyway, all being told the bits and bobs being talked about already about 6th make me quite excited. I understand a number of people are getting annoyed as x and y have changed and z has been added etc and I would say that of course its going to change. What I like is that they seem to have made the game more fun to play as a hobby. This will be annoying to the tournament players who play to win, not to have fun, but nuts to them. This is how I remember the hobby when I first got involved 23+ years ago. Fun with a great story behind it.

Looking forwards to the postie coming with it :D

Saturday, 23 June 2012

40k 6th Edition pre-orders now on

Finally GW have opened the floodgates and are now accepting preorders for the 6th edition of Warhammer 40,000.
I was up at 8am putting my order in :)

I suspect that we will find that leaked version a few months ago wasnt a hoax at all and that GW release subsequent fake leaks to cover this up.

Time will tell. Visit GWs website for more info.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

First game in over 10 years

Tonight I finally played a game of Warhammer Fantasy. Actually it's probably been a lot longer than 10 years since I played fantasy but it's been this long since I played a wargame.

The game itself was quite fun. I was up against Adams High Elves with 1000 points apiece in a standard battle scenario. As I set up I realised how little I could actually remember of how to play. Some of the basics were there but some were missing ( such as turn sequence!). This made it a slow game and likely quite frustrating for poor Adam.

I won't bore you with a turn by turn retelling but the upshot was I won. Apparently.

It was fun to play again but it has highlighted several things :

1- I really need to learn the rules properly.
2- My mental arithmetic sucks. I had trouble adding up 4 dice!
3- I am putting waaaaaay too much detail into my models. I noticed that when playing, you don't tend to notice that you've painted your troops eyebrows!
4- Movement trays are mandatory. Trying to move troops without one is a right pain.

Lots to think about before my next game.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Finecast my arse!

Today I've had the misfortune of coming into contact with Games Workshops replacement for their metal miniatures; the erroneously titled Finecast. Essentially put its resin casting, something Forgeworld has been doing for years and it seems GW is cheapening up and switching from metal as fast as they can.

There's just one problem with this: it's utter crap. The trouble with resin is air bubbles. Ok you get this with metal models very occasionally but not to the extent I saw today (see pic). The casting was shocking. If we'd sent this out when I worked for Forgeworld 10 years ago I'd have been shot.

Other than the cheap factor I cannot understand why GW has gone all out for resin instead of metal when the results are this poor. Plus the fact that they are still charging top dollar for this crap.

Right now they're re-releasing all their metal minis in "Finecast" and you can't get the metal versions from them any more. Personally I will never buy one if these again and will always buy a metal version on eBay even if it's the same price.

For shame Games Workshop!!

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Meeting the locals

Just got back from "Da Club" - Inverness's wargames club. I mostly popped along to meet people and see some games actually played.
Interestingly I was initially going to look at the 40k games but as someone there pointed out, there's no point getting familiar with 5th edition as its due to be replaced very soon.

So with that in mind I watched a fantasy game. 1000pts of Chaos vs Wood elves. It was an interesting game, not least by the Chaos player using a lots of orc models in the place of marauders. The game itself was fairly straightforward with the Wood elves mostly shooting (as it was all archers with 2 wizards!) and the marauder horde cruising in on the side table edge as a reinforcement. Predictably Chaos won but the Elves gave them a good run for their money.

The upshot was that I got to see how 8th edition actually plays and ask lots of questions too.
I'll be back there next week. I hope to get my Empire into a gameable place by then. :)

Thursday, 31 May 2012

New Place

Well the move has gone quite well but we're now temporarily lodging with my parents while we sort out jobs and a place to live. As a consequence I'm unlikely to do as much as I hoped on the armies but that's do be expected.

In other news it appears 40k 6th Edition is imminent as GW have pulled the 5th edition rulebook from their website. Oddly there's no mention of any new 40k edition in the June White Dwarf, even with a large spread on their new 40k fliers (which I still think are a bit of a waste of time). I understand that GW have to maintain the veil of secrecy to keep their Hobbit licence (which New Line Cinema insisted on) but with no advertising for advance orders in White Dwarf it would appear its literally going to be a last minute drop.
Current prediction is that GW won't wait any longer than 30 days from pulling the 5th edition off the shelves so that would pretty much guarantee a release in June.
I'm pretty anxious to get hold of a copy ASAP so I guess I'll just have to try to remember to check the GW website often !

Sunday, 20 May 2012

New Empire Book

Oh and also finally got the new Empire book. Am currently reading it and we'll see how I need to alter my 1000pt army :)

Death Company done

Well as you might have guessed by the title I have indeed finished the Death Company complete with chaplain.

I've also used the Army Painter spray to red undercoat the drop pod, the Razorback and the bike squad.
I've also begun painting them too. As my wife helpfully pointed out, it would probably have been easier to paint the drop pod internals while assembling. While this is possibly true, it was my first time making one so I guess it's a learning curve.

I'm going to try and get some more done this week but I'm moving house next week so it's likely I won't be able to do anything more for a while.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Saga of Missing Sprays

It's been a bit quiet on the modling front this week. It's mostly been down to not having any red spray paint.
When I painted the last batch of marines, I spent a lot of time just getting the base red colour in the models. I figured a red spray would make life so much easier.

So I found a site that offered free shipping on Army Painter's Dragon Red spray paint and ordered. That was 15 days ago. I'm still waiting. I've actually submitted a claim with Paypal as the retailer doesn't even acknowledge my emails.
So anyway I ordered another can from an eBay retailer and that should be here soon.
I have not been totally idle tho and have made up the Razorback and Drop Pod kits. I've also had a lot of fun with 2mm magnets and the Death Company meaning I can now switch the backpacks for jump packs whenever I need to. £2.30 vs £18 for a new set of Death Company: I know what I'd rather spend.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

6th Edition Shocker

Bell of Lost Souls has just posted this http://t.co/CNzn7n4Z

If this is true it's HUGE for 40k. Having a continuation of the 40k story is just incredible. I can't remember the last time the "current time" that you effectively play the games in was updated this much.

I'm definitely excited about 6th edition now and am going to start saving for the collectors edition which (if going by Warhammer Fantasy) should be pretty impressive!

Wooooo!

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Yet more 40k 6th edition discussion

The fun never stops :)

Ive been reading an interesting thread on Warseer ( http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=329875 ) which has been discussing 6th ed. I have been labouring under the assumption that the leaked version was genuine, but various people in this thread call this into question. One which seems compelling is from a graphic designer that says the makeup of the PDF is too dissimilar to PDFs from GWs own website.

If this is true it does lead to some genuine excitement as the leaked version didn't have enough changes to make it a real turning point for the game. In short I'm really looking forward to this release.

A little protection

I'm due to move 600 miles away in about 4 weeks time so the thought of "How am I going to transport my minis?" has been on my mind for a while now. Over the course of the years I've acquired a few miniature transport systems (cases to the rest of the world) but these had dwindled down to 2. One was a Sponge Tech (or something) case I bought off someone who was importing them from the US. The other was a Crystal Caste case.
Neither cases were suitable for my current Marines setup mosly due to the fact there was no tray deep enough to fit the blinking drop pod (weighing in at an obese 4" wide). So I would have to get new trays.
For the Sponge Tech case, this was promptly shot in the foot by the fact that since the time I bought it (2002ish) the company had gone bust, and the tray size seemed to be obscure enough to prevent getting trays elsewhere. The Crystal Caste case also seemed to have a tray issue. I could get hold of new trays BUT only by importing them from the US. With customs in the UK being extra picky these past couple of years I decided it wasn't worth the hassle of waiting 4 weeks for delivery and then paying duty on top of that.

"Not a problem" says I. "I'll simply buy a new one". However buying new things involves cash, which is in short supply at the mo. So the Sponge Tech bag and trays went to eBay (and fetched a tidy £25) and I also put some motorcycle luggage on eBay too which fetched in £60. The last part came from clearing out the tank bag from my motorcycle ready for posting, only to find a birthday card from my in-laws with £20 still inside (don't you just love those finds?)
This brought the total to £105.

Now for the new case. From my limited research there seemed to be a few major brands floating round now. The most famous seems to be Battlefoam; a US based company that can custom make trays for you. Another good one was KR Multicase which seemed to have branches in the UK and US. I also found Feldherr cases, based in Germany.

Feldherr didn't have the option for custom fitted trays (to fit the shape of the drop pod and other miniatures) so I ruled them out. Also the prices seemed a little high.

Battlefoam had a great tray creator on their website where you could move shapes around and only cut holes for what you wanted. This seemed ideal but the cost was stupidly high. For a case to hold just my 40k Miniatures we were looking at £120.

Therefore KR Multicase seemed the best solution. After a LONG time (and a large headache) trying to work out which pre-designed custom trays I would need, I worked out I could get all my 40k minis into their Kaiser2 bag which would cost £83.99 (no brainer). I was torn between this one and their aluminium case which is lockable and stronger, but the extra pockets on this bag swayed it for me. Plus it has the solid card inner cases which can be swapped out easily which makes sense to me.

So long (and potentially boring) story later I put my order in this morning. I will give a full review once it arrives.

Monday, 30 April 2012

Death on Wheels

Almost finished the Mcgragge boxed set Marines today. Still got to finish the bases and put the transfers on but they are essentially done. I've also based the bikes on some resin bases I picked up on eBay. I probably should have pinned them on as they're only held on by superglue but I figured I'd do that if they came off easily.

I've now started work on a Razorback. I've managed to rig the turret with tiny (2mm x 1mm) magnets which William I can swap the configuration of weapons as I see fit (beats buying two just to have the choice). I'm also likely to start on my Death Company as well. I plan to use magnets on these too, to configure them with and without jump packs.

The new paints are working well. I'm really enjoying their new "stay open" mechanism, but it's a pity that some of the new paints seem to have been packaged in the old pots. Ah well

Thursday, 26 April 2012

DUST and GW alternatives

I was reading a review of DUST over on Bell Of Lost Souls (http://www.belloflostsouls.net/2012/04/tectonic-shift-dust-warfare-arrives.html) and it got me wondering about other wargames that are not GW related.

I think that there are definitely some great non-GW games out there: I own a few and have played others. This new game certainly looks good but there is always one problem with non-GW games; opponents.

With Warhammer and 40k, you're pretty much guaranteed to find someone to play with at any gaming club or store you visit. With other games your chances diminish the older the game is. Certain recent games have bucked this trend in recent years, Flames of War being one, but it's still a risk. When funds are tight do you risk a less popular game over more models from GW? Personally I wouldn't.

It's a different story if you're already gaming with a group that collectively agree to play (I remember doing Warhammer ECW when I worked in the Forgeworld warehouse which worked quite well) but if you move on you're suddenly landed with a load of dust collection devices.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Impromptu site design

I hadn't intended to re-design the site but trying to add a Twitter feed box was apparently too much for the custom template I'd uploaded and it died spectacularly... so I quickly threw this together using Bloggers tools.
It will do for now :)

Saturday, 21 April 2012

A Sea of Red

Well more a puddle really.

I've now mostly finished just over half of my Blood Angels tactical squad. The bases are still unpainted as I umm and arrr about how to finish them (classic grassy/rock to offset the red or battlefield grey).
I've now started the remaining terminators and marines from the Macragge 40k boxed set. It took over 2 hours to paint the base coat of red on to the models. Hindsight says I should really invest in some Army Painter colour sprays if I'm going to do any more.
To rest my painting hand I also did some work on my resurrected bikers by drilling out the bike exhausts and scraping off yet more old paint.
I hope to get the marines and terminators done by the middle of the week and then begin on the bikers.

Friday, 20 April 2012

... and finally

Yes the spam-a-thon is almost at a close. I thought I'd leave you with a link to a crazy project I found online. This guy has built a scale Bolt Pistol out of MDF and pipes.



Looks amazing and I'm in awe of his skills. Check out his blog for how he built it.

More 6th edition rumours

The rumour mill is going nuts at the moment as to speculation about the new Warhammer 40k 6th edition. Various camps have suggested what's going to come out when and the jury's still out.
I think its certain 6th ed is coming out this summer. I suspect it will be sooner rather than later (so early June). There is good evidence to suggest that the boxed set will contain Dark Angels (although I suspect these could be painted to be any chapter). White Dwarf have been sneaking in some spine art onto their mags the last few months and it apparently looks like a Dark Angel marine (although it looks more like Chaos to me but what do I know- see left). Also the new paint starter sets have Marines with optional Dark Angel pads on.
Speculation remains rife over what the opposing boxed set army will be.

There is also wild speculation over which (if any) codex will be released before 6th ed arrives. Apparently there hasn't been a new codex for the last 6 months, which is a little out of character for GW. Several people claim Chaos is coming out as people working at printers have leaked info about it. Others claim Tau will be the next one as they're the last race to been still stuck on a 4th edition codex.
Personally I think it would be crazy for GW to release a new codex for 5th just before 6th comes out, but if the leaked version of the 6th ed is to be believed (see this previous post) there will be conversion rules for them so they may not think it matters.

We will see what transpires.

GWs new Paints

Post 2 of my spam-a-thon.

Finally got my pre-order of GWs new paints from Total-Wargamer. Actually these are the second delivery of paints I had as after I made the initial pre-order from them I realised I needed a few more and ordered them direct from GW (as oddly it was cheaper due to free postage over £10).

My first impressions? I quite like them. I understand that GW have gone with a completely new paint manufacturer (I think it may even be Vallejio but I could be wrong) and as such all the paint names have changed as well as an addition of about 60 odd new paints. I've learned that apparently paint names are like trademarks so you won't be seeing Chaos Black any more.
As for actual use, they're pretty good. They've introduced a new system of organisation, grouping paints into Base, Layer, Dry, Shade, Texture and Glaze. I think the idea is to simplify how to paint a specific colour and the increase in available colours will help cut down mixing time to achieve shading (something I hate doing as I never get the same colour twice).

I've now tried all but the texture paints. The Base paints work in the same way as the previous Foundation paints and go well as a first coat. The layer paints seem to be standard and I see no difference in the consistency or application. The Dry paints are interesting. They're essentially heavy on the pigment and light on the liquid. The upshot is this almost paste like paint that works very well for drybrushing. As theres very little liquid I remain sceptical as to whether these just dry out within weeks or not, but from my initial use one pot could go a very long way. The Shade feels much like the previous generation of washes (a VAST improvement over the older ones). The Glaze is an odd one. I've never really used them before, even when GW produced them previously so I don't really have any base for comparison. It seems to be a wash that colours rather than shades (if that makes sense). Seems to work very well at un-chalking my chalky Blood Angels (see previous post).

The pots have had a re-design too. The look similar to the previous paints but for a large fin at the back. This is a larger and more reliable system of keeping the paint pot open when you use it. I know that its generally frowned upon to paint from the pot but I do it simply because it saves time and brushes (not to mention palette cleaning). The lids feel more secure too and I've noticed that if you close the front of the lid (as you did with the previous set) the back of the lid tends to not secure itself, which I can see will lead to dried pot syndrome some day. Easily managed by simply checking the top of the pot tho.

All in all I think its a positive step for the hobby (if a little obvious that its a big money spinner for GW).

Intermittent is my name

Hmm the posts on this blog seem to be mostly coming in 6 day bursts. Its probably as not much is happening or I'm saving up for a multi post day (which today is likely to be).

The Blood Angels are coming along nicely, with the Dreadnought pretty much done and now 6 Marines almost complete along with 2 Terminators.
I have been experimenting with which colours to paint them with and in which order. I found a handy guide online that I based mine on, but have been swayed by GWs new paints. I have discovered my over reliance on drybrushing (so much so I've had to order more brushes!) but this has the downside of making the marines look a little chalky. I'm still working on the finesse and I suspect I'm being far too fussy for gaming minis (the wife certainly seems to think so).

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Trouble with transfers

... or lack of. My Blood Angels are coming along nicely thanks to the help of some of the new GW paints, but I've run into a new problem; transfers.
I had originally intended to use transfers for the Blood Angel winged icon on their shoulder pad. I would use the dedicated blood angel shoulder pads BUT I'm painting the vanilla marines you get in the 40k game set which means you can't replace the pads.

Anyway my issue is that GW don't seem to make or sell Blood Angel transfers. Forgeworld sell an A4 sheet of them but at almost £10 I'm a little hesitant to buy them.
However I don't really have many alternatives. My painting skills aren't good enough to paint the complex BA symbol on the pads exactly the same every time and I think it looks a bit crap with dodgy symbol painting. So it looks like I have little choice.

On the plus side the new paints seem to be ok. I don't really notice the difference with the layer paints and the old paints but the new dry brush paints are pretty good.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Other surprise finds

To follow up my previous post on this topic, I also found the following items the other day.
Gorka Morka Pendant

This item was from when I worked part time at the York GW store back in 1997. Gorka Morka had just been released and these pendants were painted by the store staff and given to the winners of in-house games. Gorka Morka was a sub-game by GW that had groups of Orks race round in wagons and blow each other up. It was a very handy way of building up a 40K ork force as the game had loads of Orks and vehicles for comparatively not much money.

40k Bolter Pin Badge

This item was given to those buying the 3rd Edition of Warhammer 40,000 back in 1998. To be honest I'd forgotten I had it but I'm glad I still do. Its one of those little things that has a story. Its also from the time I last played a decent game of 40k. :)

Warhammer Online Pin Badge

I think this came from when I worked on Warhammer Online from 2002 to 2004. This was the Climax version that never got release rather than the Mythic -World of Warcraft Clone- that was released a few years later. I worked as a level designer back then making the 200 sqKM world for the game. I think I enjoyed most of it, but as is typical with good things I didn't really appreciate it at the time and mostly wasted a golden opportunity to work with GW or in games development. Either way I spent the in between years still trying to figure out what to do.. SO in a sense this item is a reminder of regret.

Inquisitor Scale Tau.. leader thing :)

I got this when I worked for Forgeworld in 2002 as an interesting painting project. Inquisitor was a side-game from GW that was kind of like a cross between 40K and a roleplaying game using 54mm scale models rather than the usual 25mm. I thought this model was interesting and would be fun to paint but the reality was that I really need to paint models Im gonna game with before new ones so this got put in a box and forgotten. I also came across an Eldar Ranger model that I didn't even make up so I might bung that on eBay :)

So anyway thats a trip down memory lane for me and a boring read for you :)



Continuing the Heresy

Finished the 3rd book in the Horus Heresy series this morning, Galaxy in Flames. The series is interesting as (so far) each instalment is written by a different author, this one being by Ben Counter. I was a bit worried when I started reading it as, although it was just as thick as its predecessors, the print was significantly larger making me worry that the content was poorer.

The overall story arc is very gripping and although there are differences in the authors styles, they gel together very well. As I said before, knowing the general outcome has made reading the details slightly depressing as it feels like watching the beginning of an avalanche.

I'm about to start reading the next in the series, Flight of the Eisenstein, but after this I may finally read the 3rd Gotrek and Felix Omnibus thats been waiting for me for the last 2 months :)

Surprise finds

Whilst rummaging through my model boxes I discovered a number of items I'd forgotten I had. Chief amongst these were 5 Space Marine bikes that I'd bought on eBay years ago. I got them cheap ( like £7-8) and they were cheap because the previous owner had done a very amateurish paint job then under coated over it to sell them.
It was mostly an experiment to test a method of removing paint from plastic miniatures. I'd found out somewhere that using Mr Muscle Kitchen Cleaner will remove the paint and leave the models intact.
What I found was that it does indeed work but with a caveats. Firstly you need to immerse the models completely in the stuff for a day or two. Simply spraying on does not work. Secondly you need a stiff brush and a lot of elbow grease to remove the paint. The cleaner only really softens the paint and so you have to scrub to get it off.
Finally it can weaken poly cemented joins. This is no bad thing if you're going to resurrect a model but it's worth remembering.

The models I found had been mostly cleaned but some may need some more work and I'm not sure how much of the detail will come through when I undercoat them again. Given the amount of effort put into stripping the models down I suspect this isn't a sustainable way of obtaining wargames miniatures.

Oh and I also did some more work on my dreadnought. I'm really enjoying paint red for a change.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Finally a decision

After much debate I finally chose to go with Blood Angels. The deciding factor was test painting a couple of Marines in yellow. I remembered that I found yellow boring to paint so red it was ^_^

Made a start painting up the 40k boxed set dreadnought which had been sitting in the box for the last 2 years.

I've also been reading the 2nd book in the Horus Heresy series, False Gods, which I'm finding gripping, yet slightly sad. When you know the overall story and how bad it gets, reading this is like watching a very slow avalanche and feeling powerless to stop it.

Sunday, 1 April 2012

The missus finally paints

After cleaning up the models and waiting for me to sand base and undercoat them, my wife finally got to paint her miniatures this afternoon. Its an odd feeling teaching someone else to paint as I've been doing this since 1989 and I'm trying to condense 23 years of painting knowledge into 20 minutes. And its not the things I expected either. Simple things like how to open a GW paintpot without getting paint everywhere, something I take for granted, has to be taught.
Still I think she's enjoying herself (as I sit and type this out!)

I've also finished cleaning my Space Marines and have undercoated them in White (something I've not done in at least 15 years, as I found black easier on the mistakes). However I'm still torn with which chapter to go with.
I'd like a chapter that was there from the First Founding and have narrowed it down to the ubiquitous Ultramarines and the Imperial Fists. Both have great fluff backgrounds. My first Army was an Ultramarine force (using the famous RTB01 space marines set) but they are a bit contentious these days as a lot of players use them. Imperial Fists are less common and I also like the yellow of the Imperial Fists but it can be a pain in the backside to paint, so I guess its really down to if I like yellow or blue.

Either way I'd better decide soon :)
(Edit: I forgot.. I'm also mulling over Blood Angels as a chapter. I like the fluff but not sure I'm sold on red as a colour).

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

GW release irritation

Spotted a post on Bell of Lost Souls outlining GWs release list for April. Annoyance has been generated by the revelation that it's mostly Empire stuff including a new book.
Frustrating as I only picked the book and models at the beginning of the year. Ah well
More info here http://t.co/wJPc95H9

Monday, 26 March 2012

Delayed by Miss Marple

As bizarre as it sounds my painting today has been dominated by painting a 1/12 scale model of Miss Marple. My dad asked me to paint a model of his for his working steam railway. Both parents are visiting this week so I thought it would be a good idea to finish it. :)

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Dan Abnett - he's alright

Sadly not much to report in the way of actual modelling or gaming this week. I have had a gander through the Grey Knights codex which is interesting but has highlighted one major flaw in my plan : I've not played 40k since 2002.
Now this may not be a big deal but my knowledge is of 3rd edition and its pretty rusty at that. As a consequence I find it hard to create a starting army list for the Grey Knights and start collecting the models when I can't really remember what I tactics I liked to employ!
I seem to remember a game in 1999 with Orks that went rather well (mostly involved piling in and giving the Chaos Space Marines a damn good kicking), but then I remember prior to this (and after again strangely) playing Imperial Guard and having a miserable time rolling buckets of dice but only hitting on 5+ and wounding on 6s (and then having most of them saved)...
So in essence I'd need to read the rules again BUT as I mentioned in a prior post, I'm not keen to learn 5th edition when 6th is apparently just round the corner!

So I read a book instead. I decided to give the Horus Heresy a try seeing as I can't remember much about the founding of the Empire (other that Horus was a traitor and engaged the Emperor in near terminal fisticuffs) so I picked up a cheap copy on Amazon and I have to say I'm rather enjoying it. So far my experience of 40k novels was reading the Last Chancers series by someone I've forgotten, which was ok but not an epic read. The first book in the series (Horus Rising) is (as my friend would say) a thumping good read and I'm having trouble putting it down....

In fact the missus is out, and I don't fancy watching TV or painting... time to read some more :P

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Fantasy and Future

Been a bit of a mix today. Started off by picking up the Grey Knights codex for Warhammer 40k. Been thinking about starting a 40k army again for a while now but its been a toss up between Orks (again) Space Marines (not done that since 1st edition! ) or Grey Knights. I'm kinda into my fluff at the moment (fluff = background, lore etc) and the Grey Knights have that aplenty.
I have heard that various people find them too "beardy" (unbalanced, made for power gamers) but I heard a good counter argument today : if you want a balanced game, play chess :)
I also cajouled the missus into finishing her 4 bretonnian men at arms (pictured). I don't think she really enjoyed the cleaning up and gluing, so I'm hoping that she may enjoy painting more. Either way its not the end of the world if she hates it :)
I did a bit more working trying to finish assembling my knights of Morr. I've nearly finished and then will be time to base and (finally) undercoat them.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Busy busy busy

Not a lot to report on the wargaming front this week due to landing some temp work for 2 weeks. Technically I could paint when I got home but there's a lot of other stuff to do at the moment due to planning a move up to Inverness at the end of May.

Having said that I have been cleaning a few 40k boxed set Space Marines up and reading Dan Abnett's first Horus Heresy book : Horus Rising (which is quite good so far).

Hope to do something wargame related tomorrow in-between other things (why is it people wait til your busy to start asking you do do more stuff!)

Saturday, 10 March 2012

40k 6th Edition likely out this Summer

Further to my musings below it would appear to people more into it than me that the 6th edition of 40K is very likely to come out this summer. Further reading can be found here :

http://www.belloflostsouls.net/2012/03/games-workshops-2012-release-schedule.html

Thursday, 8 March 2012

40k musings

Oh thought I'd also mention that I've been looking at Warhammer 40k again. I've not played a game of this since 2002 (3rd Ed I think) so I'm a bit behind. I got the current boxed game about 2 years ago and also a battalion (or equivalent) boxed set of Orks (which I remember being great fun in 1999) about the same time.
I made up the Orks but it never got any further than that.

So I've not been distracted from my Warhammer Fantasy mission but I have been reading the 40k rules again (much of which I can remember).
HOWEVER a little sniffing on the internet has shown a supposedly "leaked" copy of a possible 6th edition of 40k. Now I've had a look at the file and I agree with most other commentators that this is either the real deal or  its a very good attempt by someone. It makes some radical changes to the game while making it faster (even introducing a new stat to the familiar M WS BS etc )
Now I remember the 3rd Ed Ork codex appearing in a similar vein and the real thing was available to buy a few months later. This coupled with the fact that the current edition came out in 2008 (I think) leads me to suspect that a new edition is probably on the way.

With that in mind I'm not making a serious attempt to learn the rules again or even buy any new models or books as I think it would be prudent to wait and see what arrives.

This also ties in well with trying to keep on track with my Empire Army :)

I'm still alive... honest

I've not posted in a few days. This has been for several reasons, one of which has been planning a move of house to one 600 miles away so it means time for modelling has been a bit thin on the ground.

Having said this I have managed to pretty much finish the 10 State Troops I started. I found the last stages quite tiresome as they seem to have an inordinate amount of small fiddly items on them (honestly 3 are carrying hour glasses! I'm not entirely sure what happens on a fantasy battlefield that requires the presence of such items but maybe I'm uneducated). In the end I think I fudged a lot of it, painted some items simply brown or even leaving them undercoat black. Its a minor thing as from a distance they look ok and they're only bog standard troops.

I went and finished the basing as well. In the end I went for classic static grass. At one point I was keen to do a half green, half snow base but I thought the Ostland black and white would look better offset with a base of green (which they do). All I need to do now is give them a quick spray of matt varnish (which will hopefully also tone down the grass a little).

I've also been working on finishing my Knights of Morr which are basic conversions, making skull head pieces in place of the usual feathers and animals. I feel strangely uninspired by them tho. I'd like to do something more interesting with Knights of the god of death but I simply have no parts or inspiration so this will do. I suspect them may come out a bit crap but we'll see.

Will take some pics of everything tomorrow hopefully.

[Edit : Added pics]

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Organising the models

I was in Aldi on Tuesday and spotted a nice little rack system for £8.99 and thought "Hmm. That would be handy to put the millions of GW bitz I've picked up over the years, instead of leaving them on sprues in a box".
So I picked it up and spent a bit of time yesterday snipping bits off sprues to add to the trays.

Admittedly it will need labelling but I've found the exercise handy as its revealed exactly how much crap I've hoarded over the years. I've even thrown some Orc spear arms away (as I can't imagine I'll ever need more than the 20 I kept).

In other news I appear to have gotten a cracked or bruised rib from coughing last week, so moving, sleeping and generally existing seem to be a bit painful at the moment. This has taken a toll on the painting as I don't really feel in the mood a lot of the time. Hopefully this will pass soon.

Saturday, 25 February 2012

WD387 - oh No no nooooo

Got my subscribed copy of White Dwarf this morning. Now I know WD has always been a balancing act to get all the 2 (then 3) major games covered, but the latest issue is so full of fail I can't think where to start.

Ok Im slightly biased and I'm more about Warhammer Fantasy than the other games these days but I can still find some of the articles interesting.

First off then, theres the new Space Wolves. I think its a bad thing if my first reaction is "Oh No no nooooo". Marines, riding wolves? Seriously? Ok Warhammer 40K is the big one these days (as previously stated apparently its the popularity in the US that we have to blame for this) and Space Wolves are possibly the most popular Space Marine chapter, but riding wolves?
Ok the models look ok-ish but I think in terms of the feel of a futuristic game that they're WAAAY off and look ridiculous! Ok have some wolf like attachments to armour and have fur on them or something but not an actual wolf.

Meh maybe I just don't get Space Wolves. I know an old work colleague collects them religiously (to the point where he has masses of boxed sets stored somewhere) but c'mon GW.

Anyway back to the rest of WD387. A large chunk of the mag is dedicated to Space Wolves and the new Tyranids (that look ok but very samey) and as they don't really float my boat I skipped them... It turned out this didn't leave much to the rest of the mag. There was part 3 of their Warhammer civil war expansion which still didn't deal with any army I own so I skipped over it; Standard Bearer where Jervis answered some commonly asked questions (the answers to which seemed to be the same for 3 of the questions, leading to the feeling that this was a bit of a space filler) and a bit on Lord of the Rings gaming (again not really into that so skipped that).

In fact the only vaguely fascinating part of this mag was a 5 page section on some Golden Daemon winners entries. Either way not an impressive issue. It reminded me of when I used to work for Forgeworld. When the new WD came out we were all given a free copy, and the joke was that someone would say "oh the new toilet roll has arrived". I kind of felt like that today. After 20 mins of skimming through it, it went back on the shelf.
Ah well.

If you want more info on the Space Wolves look here. And more on WD387 here.

[EDIT - 2 days later]
On hindsight the Space Wolf models are growing on me. The wolves themselves have cyber implants which are quite nice... interesting initial reaction tho.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Flesh painting issues

Well work continued today on the State troops, however I appear to have made a schoolboy error with painting the faces. As previously noted I was having trouble painting them in the first place but I think I've gotten over the actual painting. The trouble I now have is my choice of colour use.

I started out by painting the face with Tallarn Flesh, then in a rather hasty manoeuvre I went and highlighted straight away with a Vallejio Sunny Skin paint on 3 models. This just looks wrong.
I appear to have forgotten what I knew about painting flesh (which annoyingly came back to me after I'd done this), which was to wash at this stage then build up by mixing paints rather than trying to cheat and use paints from the bottle.

As a consequence 3 models have shocking skin. I may even be forced to paint over this and hope I don't loose the detail.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Army Builder Quickshade

Oh one more thing before I retire for the evening. I was having a look at this Quickshade stuff that Army Builder make. From my limited exposure to Wargaming over the last couple of years I'm lead to understand that this has taken the wargaming world by storm, meaning that relatively quick and poor paint jobs can be made to look good by simply dipping the model in this stuff.

While I'm all for speeding up painting and making things look good, I have to wonder whether this is a good or a bad thing for the hobby. In the past a good paint job received positive feedback from fellow gamers and this acted as reward for putting in the effort in the first place (not to mention the resale value was always higher). With this quick and simple way of shading a model, you have have to look harder to spot a model that has had more effort put into it, therefore making people less likely to bother looking in the first place.

I guess if you're in this hobby for the back patting you're unlikely to play the games much as the painting would take up most of your time and you'd be aiming for one of the many painting competitions around, but its just a thought.

Personally I'm not sure if I'd use it, not because I think its a cheat, but I'm unsure that giving everything a brownish tint is a good idea or not. I suspect a better effect can be achieved by carefully applying GW washes to specific parts of a model but we will have to see about that.

Anyway just my 2p worth...

More colour, less accuracy

Something appears to have happened since I last painted miniatures... either I wasn't as good as I thought I was or my painting skill has deteriorated over time.
Now I always thought I was a good painter; not Golden Daemon standard (although I thought I could if I bothered to really apply myself) but above average and way better than a newbie. However when painting these models I find that my fine motor skills aren't behaving as they once did. I was able to paint Warhamster (Warmaster) models with fine detail that used to astound my co workers at Forgeworld, however today I was having trouble putting base colours on a normal Warhammer miniature.

Now this could be down to two things: 1.) I have a terrible memory and my skill is just the same as it was. 2.) my painting position, light level or simply my skill level just isn't right.

I suspect its more option 2 than one as I have pictures of my previous work to look at. This is the first time I've painted without a dedicated painting table. Previously I've always had a desk to work at and a decent light source. Since I got married and moved I've found that these things are hard to come by in our flat, hence the Paintstation+ thats in the pics. It means I can sit with my wife and paint etc without her feeling that I'm abandoning her to my hobby or something. We also don't really have the space for a desk so I can't do that. As for light level I'm forced to use an LED headlamp to get enough light for painting but this doesn't work so well as the light cone is quite small at arms length and I find myself bobbing my head to keep a miniature lit as I paint.

So I hope to try and find a lamp of some description tomorrow with a super bright bulb.

Also here's todays painting. I've basecoated the metal, leather and flesh parts of the halberdiers as well as painting the shafts of the halberds. Painting the faces is proving to be a pain in the arse as the halberds are at such an angle as to block half the face. On hindsight I should have painted the faces first before doing the uniform: a lesson to learn for the next 10.
I'm also going to experiment with GWs new washes. I was suitably impressed with their black which was a departure from their old stuff (put it this way, I was still using my old round pot of black wash I bought in 1992 as all the re-releases seemed to be the same). More when I actually do it :)

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Painting white

Well I finally began painting the other day. I've not done any miniature painting in about 2 years and haven't painted white since about 2002 so I'm kinda really discovering the process.
For this attempt I'm putting a base coat of Astronomican Grey down before painting thin layers of white over this.
Now that I've done it I'm not 100% happy with the results. My thinking is that its harder to paint as I'm currently undercoating the models with black spray paint and maybe I'd be better off undercoating in white.
I will continue to paint these miniatures as they are but might use white undercoat for the next 10.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Goodies have arrived

My order finally arrived the other day so I'm now able to continue painting. This is somewhat hampered by a cough / cold I've had for about 2 weeks now so not likely to get a lot done.
My wife is also going to start on her Bretonnian Men at Arms this arvo as well. Will see of she enjoys her first attempt at wargames modelling :)

Monday, 13 February 2012

A little painting

Still waiting for new paints but decided to start painting the 10 State Troops I already have undercoated.
I simply painted the sanded base in Bestial Brown and drybrushed with Iyanden Darksun. It still looked a little light so I washed it with Delvan Mud.

I'm still unsure how I want to finish the bases. I may snow base them but that depends how the uniform turns out. Either way I'm waiting for the Astronomican Grey to base the white on.


Saturday, 11 February 2012

40K Anniversary miniature thoughts

As you may (or may not) be aware, Warhammer 40,000 is currently having its 25th anniversary. Firstly this makes me feel very old as I remember Rogue Trader very well and even (sometimes) miss the old targeting templates.

Games Workshop are currently offering this finecast miniature based on the artwork to the cover of that first 40k rulebook. Now I'm one for nostalgia and I'd even pick up another copy of Rogue Trader (1st Edition of 40K) if I came across one, but I'm a little hesitant of spending £20 on what is essentially a desktop model. Ok apparently you can use this as a fieldable miniature but I'm not a great fan of Crimson Fists (the chapter of Space Marines portrayed) so I'm not that fussed. Apparently GW is selling out of them fast. I don't find this surprising as 40k has a massive fan base in the US (far more than Fantasy.. I can only assume the yanks like big guns more). Besides I suspect a large number of these limited edition miniatures will end up on eBay in a months time with the priced hiked up by opportunists.

Anyway if you want to have a gander check at their website here : http://www.games-workshop.com/gws/catalog/productDetail.jsp?catId=cat440160a&prodId=prod1460169a

Basing Frenzy

Well almost anyway. Decided to try an experiment. Years ago I got hold of some BaseTex basing material from a wargames show. It was essentially a large jar of brown paint with sand mixed in. It was exceptionally handy for quickly basing miniatures. I tried finding it online recently but Irregular Miniatures (who I believe made it) have an irregular way of selling (ie you can only call them 2 days a week) plus the shipping price was off putting so I decided to make my own with some Bestial Brown paint and sand in a spare pot I had.

 I decided to test in on the base for my Mortar before I'd glued the model to it.  The results weren't as great as I'd hoped and I'm not convinced this is a better way to base models. (see right)

So I went ahead and based nearly all the other miniatures the old fashioned way (ie PVA glue and sand). I also used a few small rocks I found outside to add a bit more flavour to some of the bases.
Now previously after adding the sand to the glue I have added a watered down PVA mix to the top of the sand to really glue it down, but recently I've come to doubt if this step is necessary so this time I'm going to see if the initial PVA layer plus the undercoat spray holds it.
Yeah I know I own a Paintstation +. Meh It means I can paint while sitting with my wife in front of the TV :)

Friday, 10 February 2012

Quick reorder

Annoyingly curvy!
Well after waiting over a week for my wife's miniatures to arrive, I discovered that the order had changed from "processing" to "awaiting stock". Highly annoying as I'd picked this one retailer as their website said the item was in stock.
Anyway have now cancelled that order and reordered with Gifts for Geeks so we will see.
I'm kind of stuck at the moment as I'm awaiting a new hobby drill. I've had an old citadel one for nearly 14 years now but I managed to loose the drill bit holder while moving a few months ago so figured it was time to get one of citadels new rubberised ones. I need the drill as the empire knights I've got are made of slightly softer plastic. As a result the lances are a little droopy so I'm going to drill them out and refit the with some scale steel pikes I got years ago from Perry miniatures.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

The State of Play

So following on from the last post here's where we're at so far.
Rulesets Currently owned : Warhammer 40K, Warhammer Fantasy, Warhammer Ancients : Trafalgar, DBM (no idea what version), misc other rules

Given my current penchant for fantasy settings we're going to go with Warhammer Fantasy. I've also made a start on a new Empire Army. This is a little break from the norm for me as I previously have played Orcs (and indeed still have a small number and a lot of goblins for some reason) so I began with the regiment boxed set (acquired cheaply off eBay). My current goal is to get to 1000pts worth of models and then actually play some one. By my calculations, with this boxed set and another state troops box, all I need to top out to 1000pts is a general of some description, another cannon and a wizard.

Now here is where I've gone wrong in the past. Previously I've bought all the models I could possibly need then get bogged down with the actual making and painting meaning it takes years to get it all together. This time I'm restraining myself... Well actually finances are restraining me too so I guess it all works out.
So at time of writing I have pretty much made up all of the models I have (which means scraping off the mold lines and glueing them together). I have still to make up the knights in the boxed set but have put the horses together. Next I will need to base the models (sand and glue) and then undercoat them to begin painting.

I have decided to go with an Ostland themed army. This was partly down to the fictional history of them and partly down the colour scheme. They are usually painted in a black and white pattern and while I would have liked to try some colour with them I couldn't find an army with a history and location I liked in the warhammer world  - Ostland is in the north east where they have to contend with Orcs and the like. Painting white is going to be a pain (I have experience when painting a Tau squad many years ago) but I'm led to believe that GW's new foundation paints may ease the pain a little. We will see.

In a surprising but very pleasant move my wife has become interested in making some models. Actually the way she phrased it was "Do you have any models I could have a go at?" It may sound callous but in these days of expensive models I was reluctant to give her some of the ones I had nearly finished cleaning, so I suggested we look at the Warhammer rule book together and she could pick one that she liked the look of. In the end she went for Bretonnians so I have bought her a box of Men-at-arms in order to see what she makes of it. I have left it up to her if she wants to continue after them and she is happy to try it and see.

I shall report on both our progress in due course.