Sunday, September 30, 2007

REVIEW: The Dark King/The Lightning Tower


This review contains spoilers.

The Horus Heresy Chapbook contains two short stories; The Dark King and The Lightning Tower, by Graham McNeill and Dan Abnett respectively. It is a limited edition of 1500 copies.

The stories concern themselves with two Primarchs who have developed a bitter enmity; Rogal Dorn of the Imperial Fists and Konrad Curze of the Night Lords.

Part 1 - The Lightning Tower by Dan Abnett

The Lightning Tower finds Dorn fortifying the Imperial Palace in expectation of the traitor attack. He broods over the real reason why he is afraid of the traitorous primarchs. He is not afraid of the coming fight, but why the Primarchs have turned, and if he will agree with their decision. He fears the unknown.

Malcador the Sigillite tries to convince Dorn that ignorance will be his salvation and that it is better not to understand Chaos. Malcador shows Dorn some Tarot cards that were used by Curze. Dorn tells Malcador abot his clash with Curze in the Cheraut system, about how he rebuked Curze for going too far. Fulgrim of the Emperor's Children tells Dorn that Curze has been plagued by visions of a coming war, the Emperor's legacy overthrown, and the Astartes turning on each other. Dorn confronts Curze and is almost killed by him. Curze destroys his homeworld and takes his Night Lords off into the stars.

Malcador suggests that Dorn is really afraid of Curze because he is fear incarnate; he is afraid of the fear that sides with him, of the fact that Curze was right. Malcador makes a divination with the cards which confirms Curze's visions. One card is the Lightning Tower, which Malcador explains could mean knowledge or achievement through sacrifice, a flash of inspiration, a world destroyed leaving you with a greater gift.

The Emperor tells Dorn not to let fear get in the way. Dorn broods on the Lightning Tower card. If it means achievement obtained through sacrifice what will the sacrifice be?

This is an interesting story and the main reason is the light it sheds upon parts of the Horus Heresy not yet seen. The Imperial palace/fortress is impressively described (it is so large that parts of it have their own climates), and the investiary has plinths with statues of the Primarchs (the two from the missing legions have been removed). We also hear the Emperor's first spoken words in the whole Horus Heresy saga. Malcador also reveals a little of his character.

Rogal Dorn is the main character, though, and his troubled relationship with Konrad Curze forms the substance of the story. Dorn is already beginning to despair at the direction the Imperium is taking, at the damage he is inflicting upon the aesthetics of the palace as he turns it into a fortress, and what will come after the war. To this extent, he has already been affected by Curzes's terror tactics. Abnett creates a convincing bond between these two very different characters.

This is an excellent short story.

I'll review the Dark King in my next post.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

REVIEW: Imperial Munitorum Manual

I've been totally immersed in the world of Games Workshop since Games Day and there is no let up yet. I've actually got some red paint on my Blood Angel tactical marines now. I'll press on with the painting and post photos when I get the chance. I have finished reading the Imperial Munitorum Manual and a full review follows below. I've also read the limited edition Horus Heresy short stories and will review them in tomorow's post. Simultaneously I'm whipping through the Apocalypse sourcebook and I'll post a review of that shortly. Meanwhile, my bookshelf is groaning under all the other books I bought at Games Day and I will be reading and reviewing soon. Then I get home from work and find the latest White Dwarf has dropped through my letterbox. Aaargh, it's all too much!

If you're hankering for something other than reviews of Games Workshop fiction I've posted the third report in my Nemesis Crown Warhammer campaign on my battle reports blog. You can read it here.

Phew! Now I can get on with the main event. Drum roll please...

The Imperial Munitorum Manual (IMM) by Graham NcNeill. 96 pages.

This book was obviously inspired by the Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer (IIUP).

It is presented as a handbook for soldiers of the Imperial Guard so that they can better understand the work that the clerks and officers of the Departmento Munitorum carry out in support of the Imperial Guard. The book itself is a hardback, covered in rough green cloth and embossed in gold with it's title. It is relatively small, but packed with information presented on cream coloured pages with dense text.

There are nine parts.

The first describes the history of the Departmento Munitorum and it's structure. I was surprised at just how much useful information could be found here. The IIUP was a very funny book but couldn't really be used as a background book (other than to get into the mindset of a Guard dogface). There just wasn't anything new about the organisation of the Imperial Guard. IMM is different. It shows the whole structure of the Departmento from High Lords of Terra level to the planetary level, for example. There are lots of hard facts here, and many of them I haven't seen anywhere else.

The second section introduces the Cadian 91st, the Imperial Guard regiment which is used as an example throughout the rest of the book. Again the information is useful and practical, describing the structure of the regiment and the supplies it needs to function (the basic load of each trooper is 25kg which works out as 52 tons for the whole regiment!).

Section three looks at the requisitioning of equipment and supplies. Amusing sample forms are included; principal purpose to which kit will be put - shooting the enemy. The supplies chapter has a stab at describing how the regiment copes with acquiring supplies whilst on campaign and outside the Imperium. This is something I hadn't given too much thought to but it did spark all sorts of ideas in me, for scenarios, models and background fiction.

The fourth outlines the proper use and maintenance of Departmento Munitorum. The importance of conformity is stressed at all times here, as is the fact that the trooper's equipment is far more valuable than he is! The chart of punishment procedure is hilarious with every permutation ending in the deliver guilty verdict box. Five pages of offences are listed and are again very funny. Virtually every crime is punished by shooting, flogging or a combination of both.

The fifth, sixth seventh and eighth sections explore the equipment, regular weapons, support weapons and regimental equipment of the Imperial Guard. These are probably the least interesting chapters because they tread very old ground. In fact most of this information has been around since the Wargear book of second edition 40k. The only exception is the regimental equipment which covers medals, the Tactica Imperium and things like bodybags.

The ninth and final part contains a selection of forms needed when dealing with the Departmento. The bureaucratic doublespeak in the rules outlined here are worryingly well written. Maybe Mr McNeill has worked for the same council I have?

I liked this book, as I did the IIUP. It's not quite as funny, although the whole book is littered with footnotes which often inject some humour into the more straightforward text. It is of practical use as a background book though, and that makes it a better book overall.

I award the Imperial Munitorum Manual 9/10.


All of my reviews end in a score out of ten for the product. The table below explains what that score means.

  • 10/10 Perfect, absolutely nothing better
  • 9/10 Excellent, highly recommended
  • 8/10 Very good, recommended
  • 7/10 Good
  • 6/10 Above average, some problems
  • 5/10 Average, some good points some bad points
  • 4/10 Below average, some redeeming features
  • 3/10 Poor, major flaws
  • 2/10 Very poor, avoid if possible
  • 1/10 Absolutely appalling

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

REVIEW: Games Day UK 2007

I got up at the ungodly hour of 4.00am on Sunday morning, slung some coffee down my neck and stumbled into a taxi. I picked up Gary on the way to the shop and the coach arrived at 4.45 to take us down to Birmingham and Games Day.

We landed at the NEC at 9.20 and joined the humongous queue. This didn't look good in terms of us getting our hands on the Apocalypse backpacks. We had been told on the way down that there would only be 500 on sale and there were approximately 1 million people ahead of us.

The queue moved surprisingly quickly and we were in the hall by 10.00am. Gary and I had planned our attack carefully so we hit the Games Workshop sales tables first. Loads of people were trying to pay by credit card and a queue of staff had already formed behind a card reader. We waved our cash about frantically and this trick seemed to work as we got served by the grateful staffer super-quick. As a result we both got our paws on the Apocalypse backpack. They only cost £45 rather than the £60 we were expecting as the templates were missing. When I asked why the staffer simply said 'China.' I also got a box of Space Marine veterans (mkii) to add to my Blood Angels.

First mission accomplished.

The Forge World stand was nearby so stage two involved hitting that for the limited edition Renegade Ogryn, other Renegade bits and the Aeronautica books (yeah, I caved). The 'queue' was horrendous. It was so bad that bunches of mates were just sending one in with all the money. Which was OK until Forge World ran out of certain stuff then the guy had to telephone his mate who was standing 20 feet behind him to see what he wanted to do. Very frustrating. I was actually worried for a few small kids who were in the melee trying to get served.

After five minutes we decided to bug out and try the Black Library store instead. This was much more civilised. They had stewards directing people, creating corridors for people trying to get back out after buying stuff and generally making the whole experience more tolerable. I picked up Descent of Angels, covering the exploits of the Dark Angels in the Horus Heresy, The Lightning Tower/The Dark King, two limited edition (1500 copies) Horus Heresy short stories by Dan Abnett and Graham McNeill, Armour of Contempt, the latest paperback Gaunt's Ghosts book, and the Munitorum manual, a 40k Imperial Guard sourcebook by Graham McNeill. A nice little haul.

I thought the scrum at Forge World may have subsided so I went back to see and it was just as bad. In fact it didn't seem to let up for the entire day. Shocking. Anyway, I plunged into the melee and did battle for almost an hour to reach the front. I ended up with Chaos Renegade Militia stuff - 10 more torsos plus arms, an assault weapon pack, rogue psykers and brass etched symbols. The Ogryn was sold out but I paid for one to be posted out to me.

All this action took us up to lunchtime so we dodged the burger stalls and ducked into a small restaurant where we paid a fortune for a modest meal but at least it had some nutritional value.

Suitably refreshed we then hit the main hall where the demonstration and participation games were taking place. I took a ton of pictures, many of which adorn this report. The scale of the games was breathtaking and many tables had special, exotic and unique terrain and models. We didn't join the crush at the tables to play a game.

We simply couldn't get anywhere near the tables where you could build a Chaos Marine or Cities of Death terrain due to the sheer number of bodies, which was a shame. Who doesn't want a free model to take home?

Gary was really interested in the new computer games so we scoped them out. Squad Commander was the only one of interest for me as it is playable on the PSP. I like the fact that it is turn based because I am an old fart and really struggle to cope with real time games. Warhammer Online looked impressive but such a huge potential drain on my life that I won't go anywhere near it, and it looks like there will be a further expansion for Dawn of War to include the Dark Eldar.

Now I had 30 minutes or so to scour the new releases cabinets. I took all the photos you can see in my previous posts. The cabinets were very crowded and I had great difficulty getting to the front with the geet big Apocalypse backpack on my back. In fact it was a hassle all day and I apologise to anyone I accidentally clobbered with it on the day!

On our way back to the main hall for the Golden Daemon presentations we stopped off at the Games Development Apocalypse game. It was taking place on the floor and was largely water with numerous islands connected by bridges. The Games gurus were moving the models and getting punters to roll dice and decide targets. I saw Jervis Johnson and Phil Kelly and then spoke to a genial American chap who works for the studio, but I have no idea what he is called. Everyone seemed to be eating fruit pastilles. Very strange.

We collapsed in the main hall and clapped all 39 Golden Daemon winners, despite the fact we hadn't gotten anywhere near the display cabinets. The Spanish painters seemed to do very well, including winning the sword (and gauntlet) and certainly let everyone know how they felt.

Now we crawled back to the coach to start the four hour journey back home. Everyone had a good look at their swag and a few lucky souls got some sleep. I was desperate for the toilet but predictably found it flooded with two hours still to travel. An extremely long two hours followed. By the time we got home the pain at holding it in was radiating as far as my ribs. It's just possible that the most enjoyable moment of the whole day took place in a toilet in the mall near where we were dropped off!

I enjoyed the day despite how tiring it was. It really did bring home just how big Games Workshop is. It's easy to forget this when you are playing games in your spare room. Some aspects of the day could have been better organised, especially the Forge World stand. I hope they take heed of the Black Library staff and things improve by next year.

I had initially worried about not having enough to do to fill my time but I needn't have worried. I actually didn't have enough time. Maybe this is because of the broad range of interests I have in the 'hobby' so I was jumping from stand to stand. I may just be Games Workshop's perfect customer.

Overall I'd give Games Day 2007 a 6 out of 10.


All of my reviews end in a score out of ten for the product. The table below explains what that score means.

  • 10/10 Perfect, absolutely nothing better
  • 9/10 Excellent, highly recommended
  • 8/10 Very good, recommended
  • 7/10 Good
  • 6/10 Above average, some problems
  • 5/10 Average, some good points some bad points
  • 4/10 Below average, some redeeming features
  • 3/10 Poor, major flaws
  • 2/10 Very poor, avoid if possible
  • 1/10 Absolutely appalling

Monday, September 24, 2007

NEWS AND RUMOURS: Games Day Forge World

There were a few Forge World models I hadn't seen before. The biggest was the WIP 40k scale titan.

On an altogether smaller scale, but far more relevant for me, is the Apostate preacher. This guy is the most overtly Nurglesque model for the Renegade Militia but is pretty sweet all the same. The rumours are that Mark Bedford is sculpting the CRM in his free time while his main project is the Brass Scorpion of Khorne. All I can say to Forge World is give this guy some more time off!

NEWS AND RUMOUR: Games Day Eldar and Chaos

Just a small post to show you the prototype Eldar Jetbike and the new Khorne Juggernaught.

There were also other daemons which I didn't get to photograph; a 3-up of the new Khorne Bloodletter and command models for WHFB Slaanesh Daemonettes. These models pretty much confirm that GW are working on a Daemonic Legion codex.


The new 40k Ork codex is rumoured to be due in January 2008 so I wasn't too surprised to see some models at Games Day.

First up is the new Trukk.

The only painted Ork was the new biker boy.

There were new burna boyz.

There were also other heavy weapons.

The most exciting big weapon is the Shokk Attack gun.

There were also a couple of other models, perhaps a weirdboy and a standard bearer.

NEWS AND RUMOURS: Games Day aftermath

I got back from Games Day UK late yesterday so I have tons of stuff to report. I had planned to post just before I left but my internet connection was lousy (I have just switched ISP's) so I had to just pack up and go, much to my girlfriend's consternation as she couldn't get onto Facebook while I was away.

I spent about £200 during the day and here is my swag (in no particular order).
  • Descent of Angels - covering the exploits of the Dark Angels in the Horus Heresy
  • The Lightning Tower/The Dark King - two limited edition (1500 copies) Horus Heresy short stories by Dan Abnett and Graham McNeill
  • Armour of Contempt - the latest paperback Gaunt's Ghosts book
  • Aeronautica Imperialis rulebook - air warfare in the 41st millennium
  • Tactica Aeronautica - sourcebook for AI
  • Apocalypse - the expansion book, dice and limited edition bag
  • Munitorum manual - 40k Imperial Guard sourcebook by Graham McNeill
  • Space Marine veterans mkii - to add to my Blood Angels
  • Chaos Renegade Militia - 10 more torsos plus arms, an assault weapon pack, rogue psykers and brass etched symbols
A pretty great haul which puts a severe dent in my New Model Fund. All that kit will keep me occupied well into next year, though. Expect reviews of all of this stuff over the coming weeks.

I also have photos of lots of new kit that GW previewed at the event. I'll post them here later this morning once I have edited them.

Finally I plan to review the event itself. I've got lots of photos of the gaming tables, and I thought it might be fun to show people who haven't been to Gamesday before just what the crazy day is like.

Hang on, it's going to be a rough ride.

Friday, September 21, 2007

MODELLING: Heavy metal

Many apologies for my sudden absence of the past three days or so. I have switched ISP's and work/real life issues meant I couldn't get everything set up until today.

Anyhoo, the enforced blogging break has meant that I have had a bit of painting time for my Blood Angels. It has been a long, long time since I painted any of these blighters so I literally didn't know where to start. A new development since my previous painting exploits (about six or seven years ago I reckon) are the Foundation paints. White Dwarf (UK issue 328) had a painting article showing how Mechrite Red could be used as a base for Blood Angels. I thought I'd give it a go.

First I had to prime the models black (I used GW's Chaos Black spray). Then I drybrushed everything on the model(!) Boltgun Metal. In a small deviation from the WD article I then washed each model with Black Ink. The Boltgun Metal just seemed too heavy and obvious. Too much paint on the brush I reckon. Once that had dried I drybrushed the models lightly with Mithril Silver.

I decided to use more of the Foundation paints on the bases. I wanted a cool toned brown to contrast with the warm reds on the Space Marines so I chose Khemri Brown. The coverage was fantastic, even over a black undercoat.

Here is the result.

The next stage is the most laborious as it involves painting on the Mechrite Red. I'll tackle that this afternoon.

If you've been following my Warhammer battle reports you can see the next instalment here. It is the second battle in my Nemesis Crown campaign.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

REVIEW: Double Eagle by Dan Abnett

I have broken this book review into two posts so that readers can more easily ignore the synopsis if they don't want to know the plot. This is the synopsis so skip this part of the review if you don't want to know what happens.

Double Eagle by Dan Abnett. 416 pages.

Enothis 773.M41. Darrow, a virgin flyer for the Enothis PDF, is involved in a dogfight with Obarkon, an infamous Chaos pilot. Darrow impresses Obarkon with his flying long enough to be rescued by Heckel, another PDF pilot. Kaminsky is working as a munitorum driver. He collects pilots from the Phantine XX and transports them to Military Airbase (MAB) Theda South. Viltry meets a local woman, Mayer who is praying at an Imperial shrine.

The Phantine flyers, led by Jagdea, are joined by other Navy fighter wings at Theda MAB including the Apostles, an elite wing of Aces. Admiral Ornoff has been tasked with the Enothis theatre. He tells the pilots that Imperial ground forces almost defeated the Archenemy but were repulsed at the Southern Trinity Hives. The flyers mission is to cover the ground forces retreat until they can reach the Zophonian Sea and be resupplied for a counter attack. Darrow crash lands at Theda MAB during the briefing.

LeGuin abandons his Leman Russ in the desert. He is part of a retreating column of vehicles heading for the coast. They are harried by Chaos planes. Viltry leads a succesful raid upon enemy armour harrassing Imperial columns trekking through the Makanite Mountains. Marquall, a novice Phantine pilot, upset Gettering of the Apostles by giving his plane the same name, Double Eagle. The situation is diffused by Jagdea and Seekan, master of the Apostles.

Due to heavy casualties and the arrival of the Navy and Guard flyers, Darrow's PDF wing is stood down. Phantine flyers engage the Archenemy who are chasing PDF planes. Marquall makes a mess of his first mission and is only saved by Espere who is horribly wounded. Viltry meets Mayer again.

Jagdea enlists Kaminsky to help find Marquall who has failed to return following his disastrous mission. Kaminsky reveals he used to be a pilot before his injuries forced him to retire. Darrow is moved to Operations at Theda MAB where he meets Scalter, another pilot without a plane. Viltry discovers that Mayer's ex-husband was a PDF pilot who was killed earlier in the war. The Phantine XX are involved in a furious dogfight. Clovin is killed and Marquall only escapes when he fires his rocket drive. The Apostles rescue the rest. The Archenemy are led by Obarkon who kills one of the Apostles.

Heckel commits suicide upon hearing he is due to fly again. Marquall gets his first kill but is shot down himself. Viltry helps bomb an enemy mass land carrier. Marquall is given Espere's Thunderbolt. The Phantine XX are moved to a secret airbase at Lake Gocel. Viltry crashes.

Asche seduces Marquall. LeGuin pulls Viltry from the wreckage. The Phantine XX adopt feathers as lucky charms when one of their number narrowly escapes death after flying into a flock of birds. Gettering of the Apostles is killed so Marquall is allowed to rename his Thunderbolt Double Eagle. It breaks down before his next mission. Asche snubs Marquall as a result. Marquall meets ayatani Kautas who tries to give him advice.

Jagdea fights hard to defend a retreating column, against orders. Base Commander Blauger tries to discipline her but Kautus points out that because the Phantine are Imperial Guard, the Imperial Navy have no jurisdiction over them.

Vilty proves his worth by downing a Chaos fighter from LeGuin's Leman Russ. The Phantine XX are involved in an epic dogfight. Marquall gets his second kill. Asche downs ten enemy. Zemmic gets four kills and is seduced by Asche. Nevertheless, the Imperials are forced back by the Archenemy advance.

The secret Phantine airbase is overrun. Blauger and Kautas are killed but most of the pilots escape. Jagdea is wounded. The Phantine return to Theda. Leguin reaches the coast. Viltry heads back toward Theda. Asche is invited to join the Apostles.

Theda is invaded by Blood Pact troopers. Jagdea escapes the hospital. Darrow catches a transport. The Phantine flyers depart. Kaminsky picks up Jagdea and they ride out in a PDF flyer. Kaminsky shows considerable skill to shoot down an Archenemy flyer. Viltry is reunited with Mayer.

The Phantine XX are moved to Lucerna island. Viltry ends up there too, but a munitorum mix means he is listed as dead. Jagdea returns to the Phantine wing. Another administrative error means that the Phantine XX are assigned four extra Thunderbolts. Jagdea recruits Viltry, Kaminsky, Darrow and Scalter to fly the spares.

The Archenemy launch their final attacks. The Imperial fighters are almost overwhelmed. Marquall gets his third kill and is saved by the Apostles, including Asche. Scalter is shot down and dies. Marquall gets his fourth kill.

The Phantine XX face off against Obarkon again. Darrow and Marquall team up to take him on. Marquall is wounded. Darrow makes himself a target so that Marquall can get the kill. Marquall becomes an ace but dies himself.

The Archenemy attack is stalled. The Imperial ground forces rally and take the Southern Trinity Hives. LeGuin is the first to breach the gates. Jagdea agrees to allow Viltry to remain 'dead' and therefore reunite with Mayer.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Sunday, September 16, 2007

MODELLING: Frag grenades are so in this season

I spent a couple of hours clipping off all those fiddly little extras from my Tactical squad sprues and attaching them to my twenty marines this morning. You know, frag and krak grenades, purity seals, ammo pouches, knives, etc. I used every little bit, partly to disguise the Battle for MaCragge single pose models, and partly to represent a bunch of marines on patrol and laden down with kit. I intend to paint the models with slightly tarnished and battered armour to reinforce this feeling. My Blood Angels haven't just turned out on the parade ground but neither have they just finished a gruelling campaign. My guys have just set out and maybe fought a couple of actions. Anyway, enough of the justifications, here are the models.

I know I need special and heavy weapons to really complete the squads but I'm going to base up what I have and get a start on painting them. At my painting speed, twenty marines will take quite some time to complete and then I can pick up more models later.

I have an additional reason to get a crack on as the new Chaos Space Marine codex has been released. My main opponent is Gary and his primary army is Chaos Space Marines. He is legendarily fast at putting together armies and I'm sure he will reconfigure his Chaos army very swiftly. I'd love to oppose him with my Blood Angels.

I went into my local GW store yesterday to pick up a copy of the new Chaos Space Marines codex for myself and was told that the Gamers edition of Apocalypse (with the backpack) would not be available at Games Day. Nor would the Baneblade. In fact I was told that all of the UK Gamer's Apocalypse packs have been sold and that GW UK are now dipping into the US's supplies.

I decided to mail order both the Baneblade and Apocalypse just in case this is correct. If not I'll buy what I can on the day then cancel my orders.

That's me for now, I'll be back tomorrow with the based marines and maybe the synopsis of Double Eagle.

Friday, September 14, 2007

NEWS: Is this a Thunderbolt I see before me?

I couldn't post yesterday because I went out to the theatre straight after work to see Macbeth as part of my ongoing birthday celebrations. So I still haven't managed any more work on my Blood Angel tactical marines, although they are plaintively staring back at me from my desk as I write this. Tomorrow my pretties.

I did manage to finish Double Eagle in my lunch break, though. The book has only gone up in my estimation since first read it. Sure, some people have complained about the repetitive nature of the action but I think Abnett actually managed to negate much of this by creating a multi-strand narrative following a number of characters that we can care about. Anyway, I'll post up a synopsis and review in the near future.

I just got the latest Forge World newsletter. It has some nifty new stuff, especially regarding Aeronautica Imperialis. There are some sample pages from the new book, Tactica Aeronautica, and some new models in the form of an Imperial airbase. The airbase looks especially sweet. I got all excited reading Double Eagle when a secret Imperial forward airbase is described and is attacked by Blood Pact troopers. I thought this would make a great 40k themed table. Now I could have a stab at it in Epic scale.

Forge World have also revealed a Games Day only model. I will absolutely HAVE to acquire this because it is an Ogryn berserker for the Chaos Renegade Miltia. Beautiful is not the word.

Okey dokey, I have to get off to work now. See you all tomorrow.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

GENERAL: Happy birthday to me

It's my birthday today so I won't be making a long post. I'm just slapping some words up here before I head out for dinner.

I have made no further progress with my Blood Angels. I probably won't get to touch them until Sunday at the earliest. I have been ploughing through Double Eagle, though. Expect a review over the weekend (fingers crossed).

And finally, I have transferred another battle report over to my dedicated blog. Here it is.

Righto, I'm off to stuff my face and get drunk.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

MODELLING: Further Blood Angels reinforcements

Hurrah! I've managed to finish the last five marines in my second Tactical squad. As you can see they include some Chaos space marine components but still look like Imperial marines.

I had originally put a Chaos space marine head on the veteran sergeant but it was too much, so I removed it in favour of a regular marine helmet.

Now that I have all twenty basic marines constructed I need to add the little details like frag and krak grenades, combat knives and ammo pouches. This will go a long way to disguising the MaCragge marines and help make all the models look like real soldiers in the field. The last stage after that will be the basing.

I'm rattling through Double Eagle and have even started noting down plane names for future Imperial Navy fighter models. How does Killer Instinct, Crushing Blow, Call Sign Alpha and Interdictor sound? Willpower fading...

I won't be posting much over the next few days. I'm pulling a six day week at work and I'm out for my birthday and two nights at the theatre. I'll try and squeeze stuff in when I can.

Monday, September 10, 2007

GENERAL: Just a quickie

Here's another Warhammer battle report between my Hordes of Chaos and Gary's Dark Elves.

No progress on my Blood Angels I'm afraid as I've been out and about all day and only just got back home. I'm planning to finish them tomorrow night when I should get a couple of free hours.

Meanwhile, I started to re-read Double Eagle today. I'm already up to page 90. I'd forgotten how fast paced and gripping it is. I'm not really sure why I picked this book up again but it surely spells trouble. I just know it will excite me in all things aeronautical and Forgeworld has this product called Aeronautica Imperialis...and it has a new expansion out which will be on advance sale at Games Day...and I'm going to Games Day a week on Sunday. Willpower fading...fading...rising...fading...fading...

Whatever happens I'll post a review up on this blog once I finish the book.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

MODELLING: Tactical squad two, part two

I drank an unnatural amount of white wine last night and felt a bit rough this morning. I know that red wine is traditionally supposed to give you the worst hangovers but it's the other way around for me. Subsequently, I haven't quite managed to complete the last five marines in my second tactical squad. Here's where I'm at.

The arms and weapons are a different colour because they come from different kits. Most of the arms and the boltguns are spares from my Chaos space marine army. I chose the ones with the least ornamentation and I reckon no-one will notice the difference once the models are fully built and painted. The veteran sergeant has a second edition marine powerfist to go with his current edition bolt pistol.

My only slight problem was my inability to locate a plasma gun or melta gun for the squad's special weapon. I don't have a heavy weapon in the squad either. I may have to bite the bullet and purchase a full tactical squad so that I can mix and match the marines and weapons. I'll then have thirty tactical marines with a full complement of special and heavy weapons.

There's another battle report here if anyone is interested in Warhammer fantasy battle.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

ARMY BUILDING: Renegades at Games Day

I have transferred another Warhammer battle report over to my dedicated blog and you can (re)read it here.

Meanwhile, I have been looking at my Chaos Renegade list to see what I want to buy for it down at Games Day. I certainly want to get my paws on a Baneblade, which will be the centrepiece for the army in Apocalypse and Forgeworld scenarios, but most of the core list should be usable in regular 40k games.

My first scan of the list told me that I'd need 72 of the Forgeworld torso conversion kits with the renegade weapons. I already have 20 of these so I'd need a further 52 which would set me back about £90. I would also need at least 3 more assault weapon packs which would be another £27. So that is £117 in total just for the renegade bits.

In order to turn them into full models I'd also require the Cadian plastics. The battleforce sets would give me 40 infantry, 3 heavy weapon teams and a Leman Russ, so two of these would be ideal. That's £100. Then I'd need two more boxes of infantry at £36, two Hellhounds at £50 and two Sentinels at £30.

That comes to £333. Yikes. And that is just for the basic 1500 point army. The forgeworld extras like the Baneblade (£60), rogue psykers (£9), Enforcers (£12), Ogryn berserkers (£55), etched symbols (£8) and vehicle crew (£36 for four vehicles) would push the total up over £500.

No, there's no way I can afford to drop that sort of cash all in one go. Hell, there's no way I could even carry that much stuff!

So my idea is to buy just enough stuff to complete a combat patrol force, along with the Baneblade (because it will be brand new) and the Apocalypse stuff. At least I'll be able to start playing games when I have this portion painted. I'll just buy the Forgeworld only stuff for the renegades and then buy the extra Cadian bits at my local store later.

So, here is my Chaos Renegade Militia combat patrol army.

Infantry platoon
Junior Officer 2 flamer
Infantry squad lascannon, plasma gun
Infantry squad lascannon, plasma gun

Fire Support w/ 3 autocannon

Sentinel w/ autocannon

Sanctioned psyker (just because I had the points spare)

So, I'll pick up the following at Games Day:
  • 10 more torsos and renegade weapons
  • Sanctioned psyker
Adding these to the stuff I already have and then buying the Cadian extras I should be well on my way. It just means I have to spend around £200 at Games Day.

Friday, September 7, 2007

MODELLING: Second Tactical squad comes in from reserves

I've been off work today so I had a couple of straight hours to finish the first five marines from my second tactical squad. Here they are.

They look a lot better than the simpler MaCragge models if only because their poses are different. I still want to add more detail such as grenades, pouches and other equipment but I'll hang on until the other five marines are complete. Then I can spread the kit out between my twenty models.

I swung by my local GW store today to see what my options were regarding special weapons and acquiring five more pairs of arms with boltguns. To my surprise there were barely any metal blisters in the shop. I'm obviously out of touch with the marine range because virtually everything is plastic boxed sets. That ruled out buying just a couple of metal special weapons marines.

My options were to buy another tactical squad for the plastic special weapons which would also give me spare boltguns, or buy a plastic command squad for the same price that would give me just five marines, but the same special weapons and if I equipped the command squad with close combat weapons I would have spare boltgun arms. Both options would cost £18 and would give me more models that I really didn't need. I'm conscious that the current Blood Angel codex is just a stop-gap and will be revised at some time in the future. When that happens I reckon the Blood Angels will get their own dedicated models like the Dark Angels and Black Templars. I'd like to have the space to add these to my army if and when this happens. So I don't want to buy everything right now.

In the end I left the store with nothing. And that is a rare occurrence for me in a GW shop.

So I broke out my bitsbox and rooted around for ideas. As I mentioned earlier, I don't have much marine stuff, as I haven't really played my Blood Angels since the beginning of 3rd edition (circa 1998), but I did find lots of Chaos stuff. Most of it is subtle enough to use as straight marine bits, if I shave off a few details. The special weapons are still a problem so I'll have to ponder some more.

I have also posted more Warhammer battle reports on my sister site here.

Over the weekend I'll try and get the other five marines finished too, and I'm going to sit down and work out exactly what to buy at Gamesday.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

NEWS AND RUMOURS: Detailed Ork rumours

I'm off to the theatre tonight so I don't have much time to post and no time for modelling. Instead, I thought I'd copy you in on some Orks rumours that I came across on the Warhammer Forum, posted by Xtapl and taken from the Waagh forums as posted by Orkdom:

Walked into a new LGS this saturday for the first time, and the guy behind the counter says "hey, can I help you with anything?" I say "Nope, here to play, got some friends should be showing up in a minute."

"What do you play?" he asks.


"What race?" he continues....


He gets this silly grin on his face. "Ahhhh, Orks." He motions for me to come around behind the desk. "Come here, I got something to show you."

I put down my stuff and walk around, sort of bemused at this strange gesture. When I get around the corner, and see what he's holding in his hands though, confused amusement is immediately replaced by the utmost feeling of intense, almost school-girlish giddiness-

He's holding the new Codex: Orks in his hands.


Right, so as you may have guessed, I have some info on the new ork dex for you guys. But this isn't a couple of vague mentionings of furious charge and bomm-squigs andpoints drops for basic boyz. This is very nearly the whole damn thing. I even have pictures to show you, providing the HQ gives me permission to post the ones I sent NS. Let me say right now, this thing looks great. Rules aside, the book is loaded with incredible fluff- they even mention Brainboyz!! There are a number of hurdles some of you may have to get over in order for it to grow on you, but on the whole the units are great, the possibilities virtually endless, the options diverse and characterful. It's a really open-ended book. Right now, my biggest honest gripe is that I have to choose between stormboyz and deffkoptaz choppa.gif !!!

But oh well. Here it is....

Army Special Rules:
• Furious Charge
• WAAAGH!!: once per game, call a WAAAGH, entire army gains fleet for that turn. Any unit that rolls a ‘1' for fleet takes a wound, but still acts normally.
• Mob Size: Units of 11 or more orks count as fearless; if any unit fails a Ld check, roll 2d6 and compare the result to the number of orks in the mob- if the result is less than the number of orks, the Ld check is considered passed.

HQ units:
• Warboss: gains T5, special rule “Da Big Boss” allows 1 mob of nobz/meganobz to be taken as troops. Same price, not mandatory or ‘0-1'. Can have a warbike.
• Wyrdboy(!): stats of nob, and has a chart of 6 psychic powers. At the beginning of each turn you roll a d6 to see which power he MUST use that turn. For 30pts, he may be upgraded to a Warphead, who can re-roll for psychic powers. The powers are as follows:
1. ‘Eadbang: as Frazzle below, but place the template over the wyrdboy.
2. Frazzle: shooting attack that auto-hits with Range=24" S=6 AP=3, assault 1 blast and pinning.
3. Zzap: shooting attack that auto-hits with Range=36" S=10 AP=2, assault 1 and counts as a melta weapon.
4. Warpath: the wyrdboy and any unit he is with gain +1 attack for that turn.
5. ‘Ere We Go!: the wyrdboy and any unit he is with are removed from the table and automatically come in via the Deepstriking rules.
6. WAAAGH!: the wyrdboy and any unit he is with get a free WAAAGH! move (fleet) that does not count as their WAAAGH! for the game.
• Big Mek: has Ld8, special rule “Da Big Mek” allows 1 “Deffdred” (Ork Dreadnought with name change) to be taken as troops. Can take Shokk Attakk Gun (more on that later). Comes with toolz and may take oilers. Slight points increase. Can have a warbike.

Elites units:
• Nobz Mob: unit of 3-10 Nobs. The mob may take bikes, and WAAAGH! Banners which grant the unit +1 WS (the wording is “any model may take”, with no indication of one per mob!). May take various weapons and equipment. One may be upgraded to a Painboy with Painboss stats, syringe and toolz, and may take orderlies; allows the whole mob to be upgraded with cybork bodies. The mob may take either a trukk or battlewagon as transport.
• Meganobz Mob: unit of 3-10 Mega Armoured Nobs. May take various weapons, and be transported by either a trukk or battlewagon.
• Burnaboyz Mob: unit of 5-15 burnaboyz. All are armed with burnas. Up to 3 may be switched to meks for free, who replace burnas with toolz and oilers and may take kustom mega blastas, force fields, or other stuff.
• Tankbustaz Mob: unit of 5-15 tankbusta boys. All are armed with Rokkits(!). Up to 2 may replace their rokkits with Tankhammers, close combat weapons that allow them to strike with S10. The unit may include 3 Bommsquigs, which when released count as an automatic S8 hit against the nearest enemy vehicle on a 2+, or the nearest vehicle period on a 1. One may be upgraded to a Nob who can take various equipment.
• Lootaz Mob: unit of 5-15 lootas. All are armed with Deffguns, which are heavy d3 autocannons. Up to 3 may be switched to meks for free, as with burnaboyz mobs.
• Kommandoz Mob: unit of 5-15 kommandos. 2 may take heavy weapons, one may be upgraded to a nob. Infiltration, Move Through Cover.

Troops units:
• Boyz Mob: unit of 10-30 boys. 3pt decrease, no choppa (though ‘choppa’ is the term used for c.c.w. throughout the book). 1 in 10 may have a heavy weapon, so you need 30 to get the current standard of 3 (they’re pushing the horde idea here, the bar stewards pphhtork.gif ), and burnas are no longer an option. One may be upgraded to a nob, who can have various bits. The entire mob may swap its choppa and slugga for shootas for free. Up to 1 mob in the army may be upgraded to ‘Ardboyz. The mob may be transported in a Trukk if it has few enough models.
• Grot Mob: unit of 10-30 grots. Same cost, gain BS 3, lose better footing and living shield but keep mine clearance as “It’s a Grot’s Life”. There must be a 1 to 10 ratio of Runtherds to Grots. Runtherds can take various kinds of equipment, including a new grabba stikk item which reduces the attacks of one enemy model in assault.

Transport units:
• Wartrukk: same stats and small points increase. Can transport up to 12 models, those in mega armour count as 2 a piece. No longer precisely follows the vehicle damage chart; if a ‘vehicle destroyed’ or ‘vehicle explodes’ result is rolled on the regular chart, roll another d6 and consult the chart that follows:
1-2: Kaboom!: the trukk explodes and the orks inside take each a S3 hit, and must test for pinning.
3-4: Kareen!: roll the scatter die and move the trukk 3d6" in the direction indicated (the ork player chooses if a hit is rolled), and then apply the Kaboom result in the new location.
5-6: the vehicle is destroyed, but no models take any wounds and the orks do not have to test for pinning (don’t recall the name).

FA units:
• Stormboyz Mob: unit of 5-20 stormboys. 3pt decrease, and gain fleet of foot (separate from WAAAGH! Rule). One may be upgraded to a nob who can take various weapons.
• Warbikez Mob: unit of 3-12 warbikers. 5pt decrease, Hard to Hit increased to 4+, and have a regular 4+ save. Lose Psycho Blastas. Dakkaguns replace TL-Big Shootas with Range=18" S=5 AP=4, Assault 2. One may be upgraded to a nob who can take various weapons.
• Warbuggies: unit of 1-3 buggies. May be upgraded to trakks, which allows them to re-roll terrain tests. Come with TL-Big Shootas free, which may be upgrade to other weapons.
• Deffkoptaz Mob: unit of 1-5 deffkoptas. Come with TL-Big Shootas, count as Jetbikes, have Hit and Run and Scouts. May upgrade big shootas to rokkits or mega blastas, and may also be equipped with buzzsaws and bigbomms (don’t have the rules for those at present).

HS units:
• Looted Wagon: ork equivalent of a rhino (circa dark angels/blood angels codexes) before upgrades, but open-topped and can transport 12 models. Has special rule “Don’t Press Dat!”, presumably as current breakdown (can’t recall atm). May replace transport capacity for a Boomgun for much increased points (more on that later). May have up to one skorcha, as well as two rokkits or big shootas, in addition to the boomgun. Can take various upgrades.
• Big Guns: unit of 1-3 guns with krew. 10pt decrease for kannons base, which may be upgraded to lobbas or zzap guns. Kannon loses Ordnance rules for shell shot, lobba remains the same, and Zzap gun is now Range=36" and melta. The unit may take up to 3 Ammo Runts.
• Flash Gitz Mob: unit of 5-10 flash gitz. Nob stats, all come with ‘eavy armour and Snazzguns (more on them later). The unit may take More Dakka, Shootier, or Blasta kustom jobs, all of which do the same thing. One flash git may be upgraded to a painboy, who acts the same here as with the Nobz Mob above.
• Killa Kanz Mob: unit of 1-3 killa kans. 10pt decrease, with WS 2 and BS 3. Each kan must choose a weapon from the following list in addition to its c.c.w. (list is from least to most expensive weapon): big shoota, skorcha, grotzooka, rokkit launcha or mega blasta. May take grot riggers or armour plates.
• Deffdred: unit of 1 dreadnought. Comes with 2 c.c.w., and must take 2 weapons from the following list in addition (list is from least to most expensive weapon): big shoota, skorcha, rokkit launcha, dreadnought c.c.w. (Each gives +1 attack, potential 6 attacks on the charge), mega blasta. May take grot riggers or armour plates.
• Battlewagon: 30pt decrease and gains Front Armour 14. May take a Killcannon (more on that later) for much increased points, which reduces its transport capacity to 12 from 20. Only vehicle which may take a Deff Rolla. May also take 1 big gun for various points and up to 4 big shootas/rokkits. May take various vehicle upgrades.

Vehicle Upgrades:
• Grot Riggers: same as current.
• Armour Plates: now as extra armour on imperial vehicles.
• ‘Ard Case: turns an open-topped vehicle into a close-topped one.
• Reinforced Ram: allows tank-shocking with extra bonuses (can’t recall atm).
• Deff Rolla: causes d6 S10 hits on any units tank-shocked(!).
• Red Paint Job: same as current.
• Stikkbomm Chukka: don’t remember....
• Boarding Plank: don’t remember....
• Wrekkin’ Ball: don’t remember....
• Grabbin’ Klaw: prevents an enemy vehicle within 2" from moving in the next turn.

• Choppa: c.c.w.
• Slugga: same as current.
• Shoota: Range=18" S=4 AP=6 Assault 2
• Power Klaw: same as current.
• Big Choppa: +2 strength.
• Burna: same as current.
• Shoota/Skorcha: same as current.
• Shoota/Rokkit Launcha: same as current.
• Big Shoota: same as current.
• Rokkit Launcha: same as current.
• TL-Shoota: a twin-linked shoota....
• Dakkagun: Range=18" S=5 AP=4 Assault 2
• Deffgun: Range=48" S=7 AP=4 Heavy d3
• Grot Blasta: same as current.
• Grotzooka: Range=18" S=5 AP=6 Heavy 2 Blast
• Kannon (Frag): same as current.
• Kannon (Shell): same as current, but does not count as ordnance.
• Killkannon: Range=24" S=7 AP=3 Ordnance 1, Large Blast
• Kustom Mega Blasta: Range=24" S=8 AP=2 Assault 1 Gets Hot!
• Lobba: same as current.
• Shokk Attakk Gun: Range=60" S=2d6 AP=2 Ordnance 1, Large Blast. Rolls of 10+ for strength count as S10. If doubles are rolled, consult the chart that follows:
Double 1: mek and models within d6" die automatically.
Double 2: ???
Double 3: ???
Double 4: ???
Double 5: ???
Double 6: ???
• Skorcha: same as current.
• Snazzgun: Range=24" S=5 AP=d6 Assault 1
• Zzap Gun: Range=36" S=2d6 AP=2 Heavy 1 Melta
• Boomgun: Range=36" S=8 AP=3 Ordnance 1, Large Blast

• Attack Squig: simply grants the model +1 Attack.
• Bosspole: can’t remember.... same as current I believe though.
• Mega-Armour: 2+ armour save, Slow and Purposeful, comes with TL-Shoota and Power Klaw. The Shoota may be replaced with kombi weapons, or (IIRC) big shoota, rokkit launcha, skorcha. Can’t recall on kustom jobs.
• Cybork Body: same as current.
• ‘Eavy Armour: same as current.
• Doks Toolz: work on a 4+ as base.
• Meks Toolz: work on a 4+ as base.
• Grot Oiler: allows the Mek to re-roll failed toolz rolls.
• Grot Orderly: allows the Painboy to re-roll failed toolz rolls.
• Warbike: same as current, except it confers a 4+ save instead now.
• Ammo Runt: same as current.
• Kustom Force Field: 5+ cover save, vehicles count as obscured.
• Stikkbommz: a combination of the two...available to most.
• Tankbusta Bommz: AP=2d6+6, available only to Tankbustas (and Kommandos I think, but not certain on that).
• Gitfinda: can’t orky auspex, methinks.

Special Characters:
• Ghazghkull Thrakka: stats are new warboss with +1 WS, Wound, and Attack. Still has Adamantium Skull and Proffit uv da WAAAGH! (Which is changed to fit new WAAAGH! rule, as such: all units now get a free 6" fleet move instead of doubling initiative, does not count as the WAAAGH move for the game) with 2+ invulnerable included. Comes with cybork body, bosspole, mega-armour, stikkbomms, big shoota, and has special rule “Da Big Boss” as per regular Warboss. Costs a point less.
• Mad Dok Grotsnik: much more expensive. Has fearless and special rules “Da Big Dok”, which allows every unit in the army to be given cybork bodies for +5pts/model, and “One Scalpel Short of a Medpack”, which I do not no the rules for as of yet.
• Wazzdakka Gutsmek: over twice as expensive as he was before. Basically a Warboss on warbike, only better. Stats as warboss, comes with kustom mega-blasta, power klaw, slugga, meks toolz, stikkbomms, bosspole, and “Warbike uv da Aporkalypse”. Has special rule “Da Bike Boss” which allows any number of Warbike Mobz to be taken as Troops.
• Old Zogwort: Snakebite Warphead character. Stats of an ork boy with BS 0, T 5, 3 wounds and Ld 8. Has special wargear “Nest of Vipers” which allows him to make d6 extra attacks that always wound on a 2+. Also has special psychic power “Zogwort’s Curse” which works just like the panzee power Mind War except that if you win the d6 roll, the enemy character immediately turns into a squig! While he does roll for powers just like a regular Warphead, he can always choose to use the curse instead.
• Boss Zagstruk: still leads a mob of stormboyz. Stats are as a nob with +1 Ws and Ld. Comes with special wargear “Da Vulchaz Klawz”, which are power klaws that strike at initiative. Also allows his unit to deepstrike and assault in the same turn. More expensive.
• Kaptin Badrukk: No clue really. Stats are nob with +1 Ws and Ld, and he has a 3+ save, somehow. Didn’t really look at him, just know the stats from the summary. He leads a mob of Flash Gitz.
• Boss Snikrot: still leads a mob of Kommandoz. Has nob stats with +1 Ws, Strength and Ld. I remember this guy being really, really neat, but I didn’t note anything down, so outside the summary I am unfortunately unable to be certain about anything.

That’s about it! There are, as you can well see, some things I can’t recall atm. But I’m working on it with my friends and such, and we should have a pretty complete list going within a couple more visits to the ol’ friendly LGS. Some Special Characters added in now, and other stuff coming as it does. I’ll update this post as I am able to clamp down more stuff with certainty.


I'm off work tomorrow so I'll have lots of time for modelling. I'll keep you updated.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

UPDATE: linky, linky

I have re-posted another Warhammer battle report on my dedicated battle reports blog here. I've also updated the layout with some links, and I have updated this blog with a proper link to the battle report site. I'm loving the new blogger layouts.

Righto - I'm off to build more Blood Angels.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

MODELLING: They're 'armless

As I'm writing this I can see bats circling outside my window in the the twilight, hunting moths. Very cool but not conducive to updating my blog. Back to work.

More Blood Angels are flocking to my banner. My progress today is four more legs glued to bases and five torsos attached to legs. Here is a photo.

I have just realised that I only have five sets of arms with bolters, while the other five pair of arms have bolt pistols and chainswords. I'm not sure why this is the case. I bought this tactical squad for about £9 on e-bay (unboxed) and I have never bought any of these type of Marines direct from Games Workshop, so I don't know if this is how they are supposed to be equipped. I can't believe that they come this way new, so I can only think I didn't get quite as good a deal as I thought I did at first.

My problem is what to do now. While I was digging around in my bitsbox for extra marine parts I found some old assault marines I bought and stripped but never re-assembled, so I might save the arms for them. It still leaves me with five armless marines, though. I think I'll continue to build the first five and then worry about the rest later.

I have posted two 'new' battle reports on my sister site here. They aren't totally new as they have appeared on this blog in the distant past, but I thought I better transfer every battle report from this blog onto the dedicated pages too. They are the earliest games I played with my Warhammer Hordes of Chaos army against Gary's Dark Elves. The rest of my Warhammer games will follow shortly.

MODELLING: They're 'armless

As I'm writing this I can see bats circling outside my window in the the twilight, hunting moths. Very cool but not conducive to updating my blog. Back to work.

More Blood Angels are flocking to my banner. My progress today is four more legs glued to bases and five torsos attached to legs. Here is a photo.

I have just realised that I only have five sets of arms with bolters, while the other five pair of arms have bolt pistols and chainswords. I'm not sure why this is the case. I bought this tactical squad for about £9 on e-bay (unboxed) and I have never bought any of these type of Marines direct from Games Workshop, so I don't know if this is how they are supposed to be equipped. I can't believe that they come this way new, so I can only think I didn't get quite as good a deal as I thought I did at first.

My problem is what to do now. While I was digging around in my bitsbox for extra marine parts I found some old assault marines I bought and stripped but never re-assembled, so I might save the arms for them. It still leaves me with five armless marines, though. I think I'll continue to build the first five and then worry about the rest later.

I have posted two 'new' battle reports on my sister site here. They aren't totally new as they have appeared on this blog in the distant past, but I thought I better transfer every battle report from this blog onto the dedicated pages too. They are the earliest games I played with my Warhammer Hordes of Chaos army against Gary's Dark Elves. The rest of my Warhammer games will follow shortly.

Monday, September 3, 2007

MODELLING: Blood Angels Tactical squad two

Just a small amount of progress in this post. I've put six sets of legs on bases for my second Tactical squad. Here's the proof.

You can see a lot of bits and bobs from the Battle for MaCragge set behind the marines. I could use these for Cityfight strategems or just simply for terrain. Like the other MaCragge models, they were lousy with mould lines which was a particular problem with the fiendishly shaped field generators. I still have two more of these buggers to clean up. I may tackle them tomorrow as well as building more marines.

I have posted my first battle report up here. Appropriately enough it involves an earlier incarnation of my Blood Angels. It'll take a while before I fill the site up with reports and all the fancy links and stuff in the side bar.

See you tomorrow.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

MODELLING: Blood Angels Tactical squad one

A fantastic but nerve-wracking game at St James Park yesterday as Newcastle edged out Wigan 1-0. We threw everything at them and had two goals disallowed, hit the woodwork and played the best part of 45 minutes against 10 men. It took a towering header(!) five minutes from time from Michael Owen to win us the match. This was the kind of game we would have drawn or even lost last season. I hope it's a sign of things to come for the Toon.

Back to the gaming. I have put together the first of two Tactical squads for my Blood Angels army. These models came from the Battle for MaCragge boxed set. I didn't have any choice in how to arm these models; there is a missile launcher, flamer and the sergeant has a chainsword and bolt pistol. I'm okay with this because I know I'll use these weapons in my future army lists.

They are obviously aimed at younger/beginner players because they only have three parts per model and they all snap together. I glued them, of course. My main complaint about these guys is the amount of preparation they needed. Although there were far less pieces to each model, every one had horrendous mould lines. They took so much filing and scraping that I obliterated the surrounding detail on more than one model. You might be able to make out all the scrapings on the photo below.

Another downside of using the MaCragge figures is that they all have a similar pose. My solution to this problem is to add extras from my bitsbox to differentiate each model, and to spread the models out over several different squads. I know I will need to purchase some more models to round out both squads anyway (veteran sergeant, special and heavy weapon) so I may take the opportunity to actually build three squads.

In any case I plan to build all the squads first before I start to paint them, so I'll let you know how I get on with Tactical squad two tomorrow.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

OPINION: Normal service is resumed

I've been away on holiday for the best part of a fortnight and that's the reason for my lack of posts. I'm back and feeling refreshed so I'm going to get lone pilgrim back on track with a post per day.

My aims over the next month are threefold.
  1. I want to complete the core Troops for my Blood Angels army. That means two Tactical squads. I may sign up to the Bolter and Chainsword Blood Angels paint-a-thon to help motivate me.
  2. I want to make progress on posting up my battle reports on my parallel blog. I've done the behind the scenes setting up of the blog (complete with redirects, etc) so now I just need to dip into my old website content and get it up in the new format. I have around 150 battle reports, every game I've played over the last three years or so.
  3. I will sell my Exigators Chaos Space Marine army. I never fully realised this army in the sense that the models never matched my army background. This was because I cobbled the models and paint scheme together from numerous sources (2nd, 3rd and 4th edition models, some donations from Gary's collection with touched up paintjobs, etc). It seems like a good time to clear them out and start again; there is a new codex due shortly which means Chaos models will be in demand, I have played the army over the last tournament season so I have had my use out of them, and there is a new focus on renegade Chaos Marines rather than traitorous first founding chapters. The proceeds will then go into my new Chaos project - The Hooded Chaos Renegade Militia.
I'll be back tomorrow to show you how I'm getting on with my Blood Angels.