Tuesday, December 30, 2008

PAINTING: Points mean prizes

It's traditional at the end of the year to look back at what you've achieved and to look forward to the coming year. Over my next few blog entries I plan to look at each aspect of my gaming life in turn and talk about what happened this year and and what I plan to do next year.

First up is painting.

In 2008 I painted:
  • 36 infantry models
  • 1 Monster
  • 3 vehicles
  • 1 Superheavy vehicle
According to the formula outlined below my score for the year was 91.

Not bad going. But it could be better.

Now I'm signed up to the Warseer Tale of 40k painters pledge I should continue to finish painting models at a respectable rate. They will be Blood Angels until August when I should have a full 2000 points finished. At that point I'll have a decision to make; press on with my Marines until I complete the lot or switch to painting Orks. At the moment I'm leaning toward the Orks but I'll make the final decision nearer the time.

Scores on the doors
In order to motivate myself in 2009 I'll add a running total of models painted to each of my painting blog entries and I'll try to beat the 2008 score. As I'll undoubtedly be painting models of all shapes and sizes across a range of games systems I'll need a series of categories to be able to compare them.

At the bottom of the scale will be an infantry model, such as a Space Marine or Chaos Warrior. Next will be cavalry or bikes, then come large models like monsters or dreadnoughts. Further up the scale come vehicles and the largest models of all will be Superheavy vehicles.

The formula
I obviously won't be painting exactly the same proportion number of infantry, cavalry, monster and vehicle models so I need a way to compare one set of models to another. Here is the formula I came up with.
  • Infantry = 1 point
  • Cavalry or bikes = 2 points
  • Monster or Dreadnought = 5 points
  • Vehicle = 10 points
  • Superheavy vehicle = 20 points
My aim for 2009 is to score 100 points or more.

Dogfaces and Wolves
I've added another Imperial Guard game to my battle reports blog and you can scope it out here. It was a great game against Wayne's Space pups.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

GENERAL: Howay the lads

This is just a quickie before I leave to go to the match (Newcastle v Liverpool).

I've put up another game involving my Imperial Guard over on my Battle Reports blog. It was yet another game against Gary's powerful Chaos Space Marines army. Could I do any worse than my last two games with the Guard? Read on to find out.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

GENERAL: Hounded

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and ate too much and drank too much. I know I did and I'm still devouring the leftovers now.

Even if you don't normally bother reading my battle reports I'd advise you to take a quick peek at this one. Reading it back it would have made me laugh out loud - if it hadn't happened to me. I wouldn't believe the unlucky chain of events if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes.

It was a game with my new Imperial Guard army versus Gary's Chaos Space Marines. This was back in the day when the Daemons were part of the Chaos Space Marine list. It was also in the days when units could consolidate from one combat to the next. This game alone shows the reason why that rule was changed.

The horror, the horror...

Monday, December 22, 2008

GENERAL: Atten-hut!

As promised here is the first of a whole host of Imperial Guard battle reports. All these games were played with my newly built and lovingly painted Cadians which were released around 2003. As far as I can remember most of these games were played when the book was released just before the introduction of 4th edition 40k. Aaahh, the good old days of rhino rush and consolidating from combat to combat.

I'd love to go back to my Guardsmen one day as I like the standard of painting and modelling I put into them, I still have some spare models to add to the army (and a painted but as yet unplayed Baneblade) and they will have a new codex early next year. Lets hope Games Workshop make them competitive because as these battle reports show, the poor old dogfaces have been struggling for years.

All this reminiscing made me dig out my old Imperial Guard models and I found quite a haul. I could potentially make a decent sized Praetorian and Catachan army with the models I already own, and I could also make a start on a Renegade IG army too. My instinct at the moment (and I have already changed my mind several times regarding the Praetorians in even the short lifetime of this blog) is to flog everything bar the Cadians and Renegades. This would generate more income for my New Model Fund and at the same time allow me to focus on my existing armies better.

Decisions, decisions...

Saturday, December 20, 2008

GENERAL: I'm too old for this...

Well, I survived the Christmas party, but only just.

I drank three pints of lager, 10 bottles of lager and had two double Jack Daniels. I paid for it this morning when I had to get up for work at 7:30. Ooof.

I was good for nothing all day except going on the bacon buttie run. I'm rounding off a bad food day by ordering a Chinese takeaway tonight. I really need all those carbs. Honestly.

Anyhoo, this is the last Daemonhunters battle report I can port over from my old, defunct website. It was a memorable game against Gary's fledgling Eldar army. In this game he managed to scrape together 1400 points of pointy ears versus my 1500 points of Ordo Malleus. To help balance the game I suggested Gary choose the mission. Good stuff.

Imperial Guard games will make up the next thirty or so battle reports I'll be reposting. I guess it's a good time to be refreshing them just ahead of the rumoured Imperial Guard codex release in March.

Will I be able to press on with my Blood Angels or will the Guard grab my attention?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

GENERAL: Falcons...bah, humbug!

Here we go again with another Daemonhunters battle report. This was an encounter with Gary's Eldar army. Reading it over again I began to remember where my hatred of Falcons came from.

There'll be nothing from me tomorrow as I'm at work and then straight out on my big Christmas party. If I survive the night I might be able to eke out some gaming and blog time at the weekend.

Here's hoping!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

GENERAL: Pointy-eared elves everywhere

I'm starting to feel like I'm taking control of things again. My Christmas shopping is all but done and the presents are wrapped, my parties are organised and my work is mapped out until the holidays. I love it when a plan comes together.

Hopefully I'll be able to squeeze in some hobby time soon.

Meanwhile, I'm still counting down the Daemonhunter battle reports and here is the third from last. It's a game against Gary's fledgling Eldar army.

Monday, December 15, 2008

GENERAL: Yellow snow, yellow snow, yellow snow...

The decorations are up, the house is tidied and I'm now ready for Christmas. Just one more six day working week to go then I'll have a few days off. That means I should have some hobby time.

My plan is to concentrate on getting the Brass Scorpion conversion finished, using some of the techniques shown in the IA Modelling Masterclass book. Most of the really big areas are done now so I'll be able to concentrate on the details and get regular if small updates up on my blog.

To accompany those I'll be linking to more Daemonhunters battle reports on my dedicated blog. I have four more of them I think and then I'll be starting to share my Imperial Guard games. I have somewhere in the region of thirty of those which should take me well into February.

Check out my latest Daemonhunter game here.

In the longer term I need to go back to my Blood Angels for the Warseer Tale of 40k Painters Pledge. I have a squad of 10 Assault Marines in the works and then some more vehicles.

I also plan on actually completing my gaming table. This has remained in bubble wrap since the building work I had done 18 months ago but with my Super heavies done I'll need a decent Apocalypse sized table to play on. I already have three 4 foot by two foot sections done but the fourth section will give me that crucial 8 foot length and some cool trenches to fight over. It'll also encourage me to finish all those terrain pieces I've been hoarding for ages; craters, the crashed shuttle terrain, a Forge World Chimera wreck, trees and hills.

I'm really stoked about getting all my painted models on one table but I'm struggling to get Gary interested - he still hasn't taken his Apocalypse book out of it's wrapper. At least I'll have a few months to wear him down...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

GENERAL: Up with the larks

I woke up at 5.00am this morning wide awake. Is there such a time on a Sunday? It could have been for a number of reasons; the bottle of red wine I drank, I accidentally left the central heating on, I slept for over 10 hours the night before, I was stressed.

Whatever the reason, I got up and watched a documentary on dogfighting (the planes not the animals) which made me want to break out my unpainted Aeronautica models. That lead me to leaf through my Imperial Armour Modelling Masterclass book and in turn made me want to revisit my Cadian Baneblade. No, I told myself, finish the Brass Scorpion first. And what about my Blood Angels?

Just as I was considering breaking out the paints I remembered I had a battle report still to write. It was my final game using my Warriors of Chaos against Gary's Dark Elves before Christmas. So I typed it all up and had it finished by 9.00am. A productive day already.

For the rest of the day I'm planning to tidy up in readiness for the Christmas decorations which will go up this afternoon. I'll be doing that while keeping one eye on the Newcastle versus Portsmouth match on Sky. After that I'll hopefully be packing up my eBay sales for postage on Monday. You can check out the auctions here. The item that will appeal most to readers of this blog will probably be the Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer which is selling for a measly £5.75 as I write this. A real bargain.

Adieu for now.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

PAINTING: Blood for the Blood God!

All good things must come to an end and after a good few blogging days I hit the wall. My pre-Christmas fitness regime is taking it's toll, work has been hectic and I feel like I'm coming down with a cold. Harrumph.

Nevertheless, I managed to scrape some gaming time together yesterday and settled in to do some serious painting. I put the Blood Angels to one side to concentrate on my Brass Scorpion conversion.

The first thing I did was slap some Mechrite Red onto the armour plates.

I built up the red with Red Gore mixed with Blood Red. I didn't want to have the bright, clean red I have on my Blood Angels so I washed the surfaces with Gryphonne Sepia. Looking at the photographs now it is clear that I need to highlight the hard red edges to make them 'pop.'

I was planning to stop there as I had a battle report to write up but I pressed on, trying to make some significant progress on the model.

My next task was to highlight all the black parts. This wasn't going to be a traditional grey highlight - I wanted something more sinister and degraded.

Instead I took some Chainmail and dabbed it on all the hard edges. I was trying to simulate wear and tear. This Mantis stalk tank has been in a few skirmishes already.

What a long and tedious job it was! I couldn't believe just how much detail there was and the sheer surface area I had to cover.

The end result was worth it, though. All that detail, which was previously just lost in matte black paint, leaps out.

The model is now at the stage where I'd be willing to play it in a game - all the main blocks of colour are done - but there are loads of little details that are still to be painted. You might be able to spot them in the photographs, things like the stablight eye, the cabling, the trophy poles and further weathering.

Still, I've achieved a lot and the end is in sight. I'm really tempted to forget all about my Blood Angels for now (knowing that I have the Death Company and Chaplain up my sleeve from last month) and go full steam ahead to finish my super-heavy. There's a balance to be had from simply getting the model done and getting it done well - after all it is the biggest and most comprehensive conversion I've ever done.

Monday, December 8, 2008


My mood hasn't improved too much since Saturday as I've missed my deadline for posting the results of my painting pledge on Warseer. It's especially infuriating and ironic as I actually finished painting the models weeks ago but held them back specifically for the challenge. I've just been so busy and the odd time I've tried to post on the thread Warseer's forums have had server issues.

It means I've had to play a joker - you get two for the year - and I get a 'free' month. I'll have to post two months worth of models in a future month to earn that joker back.


Anyway here's the latest in my collection of Daemonhunters battle reports. It was a memorable game against a nasty Tyranid army.

Pilgrim out.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

NEW MODEL FUND: Gold Library

In my last financial round-up I mentioned I would try to put some stuff up for sale on eBay to build up my kitty for new models. I followed through with that promise and listed three items; two graphic novels and a Black Library background book. I was amazed as the bids came whizzing in and the Sabbat Worlds Crusade book in particular raked in an impressive haul. I made £74.89 in just one week.

Get in!

That made me rifle through my other books for similar items and I came up with nine things; eight more graphic novels and another Black Library background book. You can check everything out here. I'm hoping I can add a substantial sum to my war chest by this time next week.

So how does my fund stand at the moment?
  • Total income from sales (and my penny jar) £626.67
  • Less models bought £537.12
  • New model fund £89.55
That's a very healthy profit - the best shape it's been in in a long time. It has obviously been helped because I haven't bought any new models either. To be honest I can't imagine buying anything new at all until well after Christmas, presuming my heavy hints of model-related pressies haven't fallen upon deaf ears.

PS - You may have noticed that I've dropped the category of sellers fees from my figures above. I decided it wasn't necessary at all and instead I've incorporated the fees in my income from sales figures.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

GENERAL: Owen goal

I'm in a foul mood because I'm just back from the match where Newcastle threw away a two goal lead. Why am I surprised?

Just to cheer myself up I've posted another Daemonhunters battle report up over on my battle reports blog. This was another very fluffy game against Jamie's Blood Pact army (using the Imperial Guard list). I wish I'd taken photographs at the time because it was a beautifully modelled army.

I'll be back tomorrow with an update on my New Model Fund.

Friday, December 5, 2008

GENERAL: Basilisk on Fire

The Kings of Leon were fantastic, thanks for asking.

Here's another battle report featuring my Daemonhunters. It was a fluffy game against Wayne's Lost and the Damned army.

I always enjoyed playing against Wayne. I wonder where he is now?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

GENERAL: Daemonhunters resurface

This is just a quick blog before I head out to a surprise 40th birthday party and then on to a Kings of Leon gig.

I was going through my old battle reports, wondering which ones to add to my battle reports blog when I came across some more Daemonhunters games that I'd missed. They date back to 2003/2004 and third edition 40k. Over the next few days I'll be posting them and linking to them from here.

First up is a fight against Gary's short lived Ork army. Check it out here.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

PAINTING: Painting pledge month 4

Here is my contribution to month four of the Tale of 40k Painters painting pledge (try saying that fast). I actually painted these models a while ago for the Gauntlet tournament but I held them back so I didn't exceed my monthly points limit on the pledge. That meant I could spend a little time painting my Brass Scorpion instead, but it will be back to the Blood Angels from now on.

The photographs aren't great because the light was terrible (ahh - British winters) and the flash which I had to use has made the highlights super harsh. Anyway, enough of the excuses, here are the Death Company.

Drum roll please...

Chaplain and five Death Company marines

Although I own ten Death Company models I chose to paint just five and the Chaplain. This would give me a legal squad, would make it easier for me to allocate points to the challenge and allow me to paint each type of marine in their own batch. Five of my Death Company marines came from second edition while five were the newer Death Company models. I went with the older batch of models first. They have metal bodies with plastic arms. There are lots and lots of little conversions on the models which I did many moons ago.

Chaplain Diavolo

The Chaplain was a newer addition to the unit, chosen when I got rid of my Death Company rhino and switched to jump packs in 3rd edition. I didn't want to cut up my old Chaplain Avernus so I had to make a new one. For some reason I gave him a plasma pistol which is not very useful in the game. Ho hum.

Death Company marine with powerfist

This model has had a skull cut in half and moulded onto his shoulder pad. He also carries a powerfist which just represents rending in the current rules.

Death Company marine with powerfist

Another powerfist which was really nasty in previous editions. He has bones glued in a cross on his shoulder pad.

Death Company marine with power axe

This marine has had skeleton arms attached to his own power armoured arms.

Death Company marine with powersword

You can see the bone additions really clearly on this guy.

Death Company marine with chainsword

Anyone remember hand flamers?

Four month group shot

Wow, the models are starting to look like an army now. I haven't varnished these guys yet following last month's frosting disaster. I hope to write an article on the whole frosting phenomenon at some point and I'll probably do my Death Company for that.

I'm not happy with the photographs at all, but I hope to remedy this by next month. Speaking of next month I need to decide on what to paint. Assault marines are high on my list as they count towards the Troops choices of my army and can thus claim objectives.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

TACTICS: Space Marines versus Chaos Daemons

In a recent thread over on The Warhammer Forum I offered some advice to a Space Marine general playing against Chaos Daemons. Having used my Blood Angels against Gary's Chaos Daemons in six very tough games I thought I had something to add. I also thought I'd reproduce my thoughts here so they are preserved for posterity.

I've played half a dozen games against a Daemon army with my Blood Angels and I've done best when keeping virtually all my army off the table in reserve. It negates the deployment advantage Daemons normally have because you get to see where they set up which means you can target isolated squads. It also means you can refuse a flank and effectively put some of his units out of the game.

Take the second turn when you get the opportunity so he has more of his units on the table and you get the vital last turn to grab objectives.

In one memorable game I set up one combat squad with a missile launcher on the table to try and tempt the Daemons toward my lines then hit them with my firepower and combat ability from reserve. Of course, my army had Death Company with jump packs and units in Razorbacks and Rhinos, but regular Space Marines could still pack a decent punch if the daemons are within 18" of your board edge when your reserves come on.

If the Daemons don't go for the bait straight away then your superior shooting should force his hand later.

Just be careful to compete for the objectives as the game progresses.

A unit of 10 marines should be dropping at least 3-4 Bloodletters with one round of shooting, 5-6 if you can get the flamer template on them. Concentrate on shooting each daemon unit until it is completely dead, then move on to the next.

If you can, get the Dreads into close combat with his Bloodletters and other lesser daemons. Most of them can't even hurt the Dreadnought so they'll be stuck there just getting killed. That should leave your Tac squads more room for manoeuvre. Fearlessness works against the Daemons here and you can munch through them surprisingly quickly.

The alternative to using reserves is to castle your forces. This suits a more static, shootier Space Marine force.

Deploy everything on the table at once if possible, all in one small area at the corner edge of your deployment zone. That makes it dangerous for your opponent to deep strike within 12" of either board edge. If you don't leave big gaps between your units he won't be able to land right next to you and he'll be taking a big risk by deep striking with 12" of you. That means he'll probably come in between around 18" away from your lines in a big clump of units.

You should split the Tactical squads into combat squads and put the missile launcher half on the outer edge of your lines. They are going to die horribly in the service of the Emperor. Make sure you keep enough space between each unit so that the Daemons can't assault two units at once.

Everything else will be behind. When the Daemons assault and kill the front line you move all your squads up and barbecue them with your flamers. They should be quite nicely clumped following the close combat. Alternatively you can throw your own units into assault, especially the Dreads and Termies. Sure you're pretty much guaranteed to lose 15 Tac marines but then you get to choose the assaults the round after.

This tactic will only work if you have better shooting than the enemy and again you should be careful to keep an eye on the turn so you have enough time to claim objectives.

Monday, December 1, 2008

GENERAL: Rot, glorious rot!

I'm back from the gym and just have a few moments to direct you to my latest Warhammer Fantasy Battle game report. This was a 2000 pointer using my Warriors of Chaos against Gary's dastardly Dark Elves. I tried an experimental Nurgle marked list while Gary tried out a fighty Lord. Read the full battle report here.

Okey dokey - I'm off to make dinner.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

GENERAL: Bi-monthly book update

After showing some uncharacteristic restraint in my last book update I inevitably succumbed and bought a raft of new Games Workshop publications.

Codex: Space Marines and the Warriors of Chaos army book were obvious buys; I always collect each 40k codex on release and the Warriors are my only Fantasy army. I haven't read either properly yet, although I have built some lists for my Chaos army. I'm sure to read both over the coming couple of months so I'll review them in my next update.

I bought both of the Forge World hardbacks while I was down at Warhammer World at the Gauntlet Tournament. I was hoping to finish the Siege of Vraks book in time for this update but I was 20 pages short. Again, I'll report back on that next time around. I've only had a flick through the Modelling Masterclass book so far but it looks great. It is heavily illustrated with tonnes of cool examples and I'm sure to get a lot of tips from it. The problem with the Forge World books is their size; you'd never carry one around with you to read on the bus, for example, so you can only read it at home and you really have to set time aside to do it. I always struggle to choose between painting, modelling, updating my blog and reading.

Mechanicum was a late addition to my shopping list and will hopefully be a lot easier to devour as it is a paperback. It's top of my reading pile.

So far I've only told you about the books I haven't read, so what the devil have I been up to?

Well, my schedule has been positively crazy over the past few weeks so I just haven't had the time to dedicate to any kind of gaming activity at all. I have done some reading, though, it's just not been specifically gaming related.

I have included Fighter Boys, which I picked up cheap in Oxfam, because I read it in part to inform my Aeronautica Imperialis games. In that regard it was pretty handy as it covered the origins of the RAF, it's organisation and discussions on the merits of different equipment, weapons and planes. It was superb at conveying the feel of being a fighter pilot because the author went out and interviewed them. He also read their journals and diaries from the time.

As well as the personal stories, the book also described the wider conflict and the role the fighter pilots played in the second world war. The political capital garnered by the politicians at the time regarding the RAF struck me as very 40k in particular.

The book wasn't so special in it's narrative momentum, though. I guess that's because the author was a journalist not a novelist, and it is after all a factual account. The sheer scale of the author's research was on show at all times and sometimes it was a bit overwhelming. More than once I lost track of who was who and what they had done.

Nevertheless I'd recommend this book if you are at all interested in the Battle of Britain.

After that dry, thick, factual book I moved straight on to American Gods by Neil Gaiman. This was a birthday present which I started reading while on holiday and I've been feeling the guilt as it lay on my bedside cabinet unfinished ever since. I won't report back on this book as it has nothing to do with my gaming but at over 600 pages it will stop me from reading other books for a few weeks.

I don't know if anybody else out there does this but I go through bouts of starting lots of books at once. Over the last couple of months I was simultaneously reading five books (Fighter Boys, American Gods, Imperial Armour 6: Siege of Vraks Volume 2, the Warriors of Chaos army book, Codex: Space Marines) and then I decided I'd had enough and concentrated on one novel at a time. Fighter Boys is out of the way and American Gods will be next, then I'll probably show some discipline for a couple of books then I'll splurge again. Very strange.

Anyway, onto the lists.

Books read.
  • Fighter Boys

Books bought.
  • Mechanicum
  • Imperial Armour 6: Siege of Vraks Volume 2
  • Imperial Armour Model Masterclass Volume 1
  • Codex: Space Marines
  • Fighter Boys
  • Warriors of Chaos army book

Books wanted.
  • Red Fury
  • Planetkill
  • Titanicus
  • Imperial Guard Omnibus Volume 1

Here's what I already own and still need to read:
  • Imperial Armour Three: The Taros campaign
  • Liber Chaotica
  • Storm of Chaos
  • Imperial Infantryman's Primer (Damocles Gulf edition)
  • The Life of Sigmar
  • Faith and Fire
  • Dark Apostle
  • Cardinal Crimson
  • Warriors of Ultramar
  • Dead Sky, Black Sun
  • 13th Legion
  • Kill Team
  • Annihilation Squad
  • Space Wolf
  • Ragnar's Claw
  • Grey Hunter
  • Soul Drinker
  • The Bleeding Chalice
  • Crimson Tears
  • Soldier
My aim is to beat these lists until they hurt in time for my next book update. I want to read at least five of those publications on the list and add nothing to it.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

GENERAL: Wot no gaming?

I have had an extremely busy week so I've had no opportunity to paint at all. In fact my gaming activities have been restricted to just one game of Warhammer. I haven't even managed to read anything (such as the Space Marine codex, Warriors of Chaos army book or finish the Siege of Vraks book 2). A very poor show.

Unfortunately things are unlikely to improve next week as I'm working then I'm away for a few days. Ho Hum. I'll just have to look forward to the week after that when I can start thinking about painting my Blood Angels again.

I've blogged my latest Warhammer game on my battle reports blog. It was my second game against Gary's revitalised Dark Elves. I chose to shake things up by includingArchaon in my list. Read all about it here.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

GENERAL: Is this real or just a fantasy?

I've spent most of this afternoon concentrating on Warhammer Fantasy battle stuff.

I've written up the game I played against Gary earlier in the week and you can read it here. It was the first game using both of our new army books.

The game resulted in some damage to my models so I had to pin a weapon on my Champion in the large Warrior unit and do the same on my Charioteer. I took the opportunity to shorten his halberd as it was ridiculously large. Hopefully it will now fit in my carrying case a little better.

Speaking of carrying cases, I also needed to repair two of the foam trays in my Intersponge as my metal Warhound models had ripped the sponge walls from the base. I used a hot glue gun and I'm hoping it will do the trick.

My next WFB tasks are to read through my Warriors of Chaos army book and come up with a list for my next game and to find some answers to the rules queries that arose in my last game.

And finally, I've managed to put three more items up for auction on eBay. One of them, The Sabbat Worlds Crusade book, should be of interest to readers of this site as it details Dan Abnett's background to his Gaunts Ghosts series. The book is long out of print so I'm hoping it will fetch a good price.

My other auctions are for The ABC Warriors Khronicles of Khaos and Nemesis the Warlock book nine.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

PAINTING: All that glisters...

I had my first day off yesterday following eleven consecutive days at work. I made myself a list of outstanding tasks which ended up running to twenty or so items. Gulp!

Near the top of my list was to paint the gold metals on my Brass Scorpion conversion. I estimated it would take three hours. It took six.

Here's the result.

I started with a 50/50 mix of Tin Bitz and Brazen Brass and blocked in the main gold areas. Next I added a layer of 50/50 Brazen Brass and Burnished Gold. The final highlight was a 50/50 mix of Burnished Gold and Mithril Silver.

To tie the layers together I covered it all with a Gryphonne Sepia wash. This gave the gold a lovely warm tint and took a lot of the harshness from the silvery highlight.

So that's two of the four main colours on my super heavy. Next up will be red on the armour plating and then I'll need to tidy up all the black areas and 'highlight' that with some metallic chips and damage. The final stage will be the detailing.

If you've noticed a change in the photographs accompanying this blog post it's because I tried to follow some of the advice in this post on From the Warp. I remember the original from Wee Toy Soldiers and it's just a shame that that blog is now no more. The guide is particularly handy for me because I have just started using Picasa and I'm really struggling with it. Kudos to Ron for resurrecting it on his outstanding web pages.

Finally, I've written up my thoughts on The Gauntlet tournament over on my Battle Reports blog.

So that's two things knocked off my 'to do' list. Tomorrow I plan on sorting out my Warhammer Fantasy battle stuff; I've got a battle report to write up, some models to repair, some rules queries to investigate and a new army list to write.

Ta ta for now.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


I haven't reported on my New Model Fund for over two months. That's because I've been trying to tighten my belt and concentrate on painting the models I already own, rather than buying new ones.

I did indulge over the weekend, though. The first model I picked up was Chaplain Lemartes for my Blood Angels. I wanted to field him in my 1000 point Gauntlet tournament list so I dropped £10 on him, but he arrived two weeks late. Ah well, I would have bought him eventually anyway. I now have the full set of Blood Angel Characters. It's just a shame he is such an ugly model. I may have to take the modelling knife to him before I break out the paint brushes.

The second set of models I bought were the new plastic Marauder horsemen. In contrast to the skull-faced goon Lemartes these models look very impressive. The light cavalry will replace the Furies in my old Hordes of Chaos list, and although they won't do it quite so well, they will be tasked to hunt enemy mages, war machines and other light cavalry. The other reason I got these models versus the new plastic Knights or Warhounds is that the latter are included in the new Warriors of Chaos battalion box (it comes with 12 Warriors, 20 Marauders, 10 Warhounds and 5 Knights). I'm sure to pick this set up in the near future to thicken my core units.

So lets take a look at what that £22 spent has done to my fund.
  • Total income from sales (and my penny jar) £593.17
  • Less selling fees £41.39
  • Less models bought £537.12
  • New model fund £14.66
I'm still in profit.

That's great, but the disappointing thing is that I haven't managed to sell anything over the last couple of months. Of course this isn't helped by my hectic schedule but I had hoped to sell just two items a week consistently. That wouldn't have taken up too much of my precious time but it would have kept the pennies rolling in.

I won't be any less busy in the run up to Christmas but I will try to list a few things in order to save up for that battalion box. Alternatively, or in addition to that, I'll have to ask relatives to get me some models as Christmas presents, which won't count against my fund.

Righto, I'm off to a wedding...

Friday, November 7, 2008

PAINTING: Metal on Brass

First things first. The eagle-eyed amongst you may have already noticed that I have posted up my third and final game of The Gauntlet Tournament on my battle reports blog. If you haven't already read the report you can do so here. A tournament round up will follow.

I've been slow to flag this up, and indeed to add to this blog, because my time is so short. I am in the middle of working eleven consecutive days, I've just come off the back of seven nights out from eight and I'm also recovering from a heavy cold. But hey, I've accrued loads of overtime, Newcastle United won two games back to back, the Last Shadow Puppets were superb, my niece had a great birthday (as did my girlfriend's dad and Cheryl) and I'm feeling much better, thanks for asking.

In my last blog post I was wondering whether to paint my Brass Scorpion or my Warriors of Chaos army. I plumped for the Brass Scorpion as it's already built and undercoated and the WoC army isn't due out until the 19th November.

Or so I thought.

I went into Games Workshop to pick up the Lemartes figure I had ordered for the Gauntlet Tournament (you know, the one I went to two weeks ago) and discovered that the WoC was released on the 2nd.

And it was completely sold out in the store.

So I couldn't buy it.


So, like Bamber Gascoigne, I've started so I'll finish.

The Brass Scorpion is a huge model so I didn't know quite where to start. I had planned to fully paint each limb in turn and then finish the body but I accidentally put too much Boltgun Metal on my palette. Okay, so now I'm painting each colour over the whole model before moving onto the next colour.

Here's how the whole model currently looks.

Brass Scorpion/Praying Mantis stalk tank

I used a Citadel large brush to paint on the initial coat of Boltgun Metal. This was really far too large for some of the details I had to pick out but I sacrificed accuracy for the sake of speed. I figured I could tighten things up using the new GW washes.

Claw with wash and highlight

As you can see on the pics above and below the Badab Black has really added a lot of depth to the metallics. I have disabused myself of one misconception though; Games Workshop thinks it is almost impossible to put too much wash on a model - it is. I used the large brush to apply the wash and fairly slathered it on the metallics. On most things it didn't matter because the surrounding areas were black so the excess is invisible but on some of the larger metallic areas, like the claws, the wash has pooled like the old inks used to.

Unlike the old inks it has dried to a matte finish so I should be able to tidy them up easily. Either that or disguise them with some rust washes.

Scorpion Cannon

Because the metallics cover such an area of the model I decided to go back and highlight them with a mixture of Chainmail and Boltgun Metal. I wasn't going for anything too subtle here, but since painting my Blood Angels I have noticed how extreme highlights can bring a model to life.

It's far from my most accomplished work but I think the results so far are acceptable. I'm therefore drawing a line under the silvery metal and moving on to the brass/gold metal next.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

PAINTING: Painting pledge month 3

I've posted up my latest contribution to the Warseer Tale of 40k Painters painting pledge. Of course, anyone reading my blog gets to see the full bifta.

The unit I allocated to October was a 5 man Tactical squad, with Veteran Sergeant with Powerfist and a marine with a melta gun. Regular readers will know I also painted up 5 Death Company Marines and a Chaplain in time for the Gauntlet Tournament but for the purposes of the pledge I'll have to put them forward for the November's contribution.

4th squad 2nd Company

You can see the damage the frosted varnish has done to the models below.

Veteran Sergeant Caedes

Thanks to everyone who posted advice and tips on how to minimise the frosting. I brushed all the models down with a stiff brush and then re-varnished them (after warming up the can and shaking it for a looooong time). It's not as bad as it was, especially from a distance, but it's very noticeable close up.

Melta gun

The squad had mixed results in the tournament. In my first game they lost their powerfist and meltagun in quick succession and thus achieved little. In my second game they contributed to the death of a Daemon Prince and then claimed an objective. In the third they immobilised a Rhino with their shooting then destroyed it in an assault.

Mark VI Corvus armour

I really need to paint up the second combat squad of 5 marines to fill out the squad. Then I'll probably add a Rhino for some mobility.

Tactical marine

I'm not sure which heavy weapon to add to the unit. I have lots of missile launchers but do I pick something else for a bit of variety?

Tactical marine

Alternatively I could keep them in their Razorback for now and concentrate on getting some Assault Marines painted up instead.

Models painted by the end of month 3

By my reckoning I now have 595 points of Blood Angels painted up so I'm ahead of schedule. I'll have to work out how much the Death Company should cost for the challenge because in the game their cost is factored into the Tactical squads. Stiil, even if I count them as entirely free the Chaplain costs 135 points on his own.

Now I just need to decide what to paint over the next four weeks or so; Brass Scorpion or Warriors of Chaos.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

GENERAL: Analyze this

I've been writing up a lot of battle reports lately so they're at the forefront of my thoughts, and when I saw this post on The Warhammer Forum I had the answer already. The poster asks what he can do to turn around a losing streak. This was my answer:

The best thing you can do to turn around a losing record is to write up battle reports of all your games just after you've played them. It can take a bit of time but it really does make you analyze your list, your opponent's list and the tactics you used during the game.

After each report write down three things you'd change about the game if you could; it could be bringing different guns to take on particular units, having more mobility, attacking on a narrow front instead of table wide or going second instead of first.

After a few games I guarantee you'll spot a trend that you'll be able to correct by either adjusting your tactics or tweaking your army list.

One of the good things about 5th edition, I think, is that there are now a number of ways to play the same army differently. The variety of different missions and deployment types plus the control you have over reserves means you can radically change your army play style without changing a single model in your list.

Of course it's nice to be able to do something with those battle reports when you've spent all that time writing them which is the reason I have my battle reports blog.

The latest game I've just added is the second at The Gauntlet Tournament. Check it out here.

Friday, October 31, 2008

GENERAL: Warriors and Salamanders

I read my latest issue of White Dwarf over the past two days. I was looking forward to the launch of the Warriors of Chaos army book for Warhammer Fantasy Battle, as this is the only army I currently own for the game. I play a mortal list so this book would be vital to my next 6+ years of Warhammer gaming.

When I read the battle report I was incensed!

I have contributed to a thread on The Warhammer Forum on this very subject but I thought I'd record my thoughts here too.

I've been playing GW games for 20+ years, but I stopped playing WFB in 3rd edition and just began again in 7th. So I'm a veteran but a newbie to WFB. I chose to play mortal Hordes of Chaos and my buddy picked Dark Elves.

Boy did I get a run around in those early games we played. The problem was that I played a mixed HoC army with light magic, two Warrior units and just one unit of Knights and my opponent just danced around me, whittling my units away with magic and shooting, then delivering a decisive charge in the final turns of the game. It was very clear to me that it didn't matter how hard my units on foot were, if I couldn't get them into combat they were useless.

My fortunes changed when I began to include units and items to negate the enemy magic users, war machines and fast cavalry. Furies were my linchpin but Book of Secrets, Marauder Cav and bound magic missiles helped too.

Now they've improved the Dark Elf army book (much needed I agree) but what the devil have they done to the Warriors? What options do I have now to keep those march blockers off my flank, the mages and bolt throwers from skewering my expensive models?

Surely the inaugural battle report with the new book will advise me?

No. Apparently my plan is to hope my opponent decides to take me on in close combat. Are you kidding me?

Nobody wanted to charge me before, why would they want to now when my Warriors are even better in combat? Can't GW see the effect that this will have on most games?

Your opponent doesn't ever want to make combat so he uses his movement to march block you and his magic and shooting to kill you before you get there. The WoC hasn't got great tools to stop those things so he drops his foot troops and gets more knights. That means the opponent wants to get into combat even less, and he has to kill you even quicker, so he invests in more magic, shooting and annoying support units. So the WoC gets more Cav to make it into combat quicker. Etc, etc.

IMHO the WoC book would have been far better with units a range of abilities which would have allowed greater tactical flexibility for the WoC player AND his opponent. What about skirmishing Marauders in small units with throwing axes and throwing spears? Thugs (that's going back a bit I'll grant you) with bows? Re-introduce some Chaos Dwarf units?

The way it is now is exactly how Alessio describes it in the battle report:

Chaos runs at the guns, and then either a) Chaos is shot to pieces or b) Chaos reaches the gunline in reasonable numbers and cuts the enemy army to pieces.

Reading the battle report again I think that maybe Alessio was actually having a sly dig at the WoC book in his comments about gunlines.

Ahem. With that little rant out of the way I want to point you toward my first battle report of The Gauntlet Tournament. This was versus the new Space Marine codex iteration of Salamanders.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

GENERAL: Fight the good fight

I wasn't expecting to blog at all today but I'm so loaded with cold I came home from work early. In between a hot bath, working my way through my Google Reader list and reading the latest issue of White Dwarf I decided to write up another battle report.

This was my last practice game before the Gauntlet Tournament and I took on Neevesy's Imperial Guard army.

Monday, October 27, 2008

GENERAL: Practice makes perfect

Another day, another battle report. This game was my first against the new 5th edition Space Marine codex. Vanguard and Sternguard and a Chapter Master in a 1000 point game? Uh oh...

Sunday, October 26, 2008

GENERAL: News from the front

Thanks to everyone who has offered sympathy and advice regarding my frosted models. While I haven't had time to look at fixing them just yet, I will in the near future.*

As promised, here is the first in a raft of battle reports detailing the exploits of my Blood Angels preceding and during The Gauntlet tournament. This game was fought against Gary's Chaos Daemons which he was also trialling for the tournament.

*Once I get rid of this damn cold and stop working every hour God sends.

Friday, October 24, 2008

GENERAL: Normal service is resumed

I'm back from The Gauntlet tournament.

I finished 15th out of 32 with one win, one draw and a loss. Congratulations to Francis whose Orks took the top spot and Derek whose Imperial Guard won best painted.

I had hoped to compete in that category but I had a disaster the day before the tournament. I finished all my painting and varnished the models to protect their painstakingly applied paintjobs. Then the f***ing varnish frosted my models.

I now need to look into techniques to try to save them. Binning all my cans of Games Workshop varnish is a good start.

I might pick up some tips from the Imperial Armour Model Masterclass Volume One. I bought this from Warhammer World as it never appeared in my local store (nor did the Lemartes model I had ordered for The Gauntlet tournament, but that's another story). I've just had a quick flick through so far but it looks fantastic, with loads of great photography, modelling and painting tips and the shock of seeing some non-Games Workshop products. I wonder what varnish they recommend?

I'll post up a review of the book once I've read it. Because of the tournament I haven't even read the Space Marine codex yet, so that will also be on the reading stand. As is the Siege of Vraks part 2. It's just as well I'll have a little more time on my hands now.

My blog, and the rest of my hobby related activities, fell by the wayside while I was speed painting for the tournament. With that out of the way I can return to my duties on my blogs. I'm trying to regulate my Blood Angels painting through the Warseer Tale of 40k Painters and the upside to cranking out a couple of new units in a short space of time is that I don't have to paint Space Marines for a couple of months. I'll photograph them, hopefully once I've rescued them from the frosting of doom, and post them as I present them on Warseer.

With my new-found time I can update my Battle Reports blog with my tournament games, review the books I'll read, sort out some technical issues with the blog (the photos and other niggly things I'm not happy with) and maybe even paint some of my Warriors of Chaos models for Fantasy.

Get ready for take off...

Sunday, October 19, 2008

PAINTING: Running the Gauntlet

I haven't posted for a bit - in fact I've done very little else at all - because I've been painting like a daemon ahead of The Gauntlet tournament. That doesn't mean I've painted lots of models. In fact I've only painted a few, but they're to a decent standard. The Blood Angels hold a special place in my affections because they were my first ever 40k army so I want to paint them to the best of my abilities.

The main thing I needed for the tournament was more Troops so I began with 5 Tactical marines.

I chose a Veteran Sergeant with a powerfist to lead the squad. I had really wanted a Veteran with a lightning claw for a bit of variety, and to use the great model I have, but I was dismayed to find the Blood Angels codex disallows it. The special weapon I selected was a meltagun, again to add another dimension to my list.

All I need to do to finish these guys is stick on some transfers. Without thinking, I painted their kneepads black, like the first Tac squad I completed. I should really have painted them blue if I was going to use them as the second squad of my company, but I have decided to leave them as is and they will represent the 4th squad. I have left them at five models for the moment as they will be riding my Razorback into battle in my 1000 point list.

Once I'd completed my Tactical marines I moved on to my Death Company. I have ten models but concentrated on the first five as that was all I could fit into my tournament army list. These models are probably ten years old at least, and I converted them from regular marines as no dedicated Death Company models existed at the time.

I had painted them up and used them in many games, then I ripped off their regular backpacks and glued on jump packs to get them ready for 5th edition. I also added a jump pack Chaplain with a plasma pistol to lead them. Over the past week I have been building up the highlights and details I never painted the first time around. I really wanted Lemartes to act as the spiritual commander of the Death Company and indeed my whole army but the model didn't arrive in time for me to paint it up.

The tournament takes place on Thursday coming so I better get back to the painting table. If I don't blog before then, wish me luck...

Friday, October 3, 2008

PAINTING: Heavy armour

Despite being on holiday for almost three weeks I have keep my promise for the Warseer Tale of 4ok Painters Pledge. As I knew I'd only have limited time to finish my entry, I chose to finish my Land Raider. It was an ideal choice because I'd already put it together and painted the interior and it was a single, expensive model. Here's how it looks.

I'm really getting into painting vehicles; it's relatively easy to get good results due to all the sharp edges, I have my paint and weathering scheme nailed down and it grows the army very quickly.

The Land Raider took a lot longer than the Rhino, though. There are lots of thin layers of armour which means loads more highlighting and the Godhammer lascannons (how cool is that name?) were a pain to paint then glue together. I'm not looking forward to putting together the metal Hurricane Bolters on my Land Raider Crusader.

Due to the time constraints of the pledge I had to skip the 'mud' mix I usually use on my vehicles. The Land Raider still has all the paint chips and dried dirt, though.

The only bad thing about the Land Raider is that I probably won't be able to take it in my first tournament list. When I was buying my copy of Black Reach at Games Workshop last Saturday I found out about The Gauntlet tournament. This is held in Warhammer World and normally consists of three 1000 point games played between 40-50 gamers from the North East of England. I played in the tournament in 2003, 2004 and 2005 and won best painted army in the first two years and overall in the last.

At 255 points the Land Raider will be too expensive to fit into my 1000 point list. On the other hand I have precious little else painted and ready to take and I only have three weeks to go!

I've posted up my first practice battle report on my battle reports forum here. It's clear from that game that I need to hurriedly paint up some Troops so Tactical Marines are next on my painting table.

Friday, September 26, 2008

GENERAL: Bi monthly book update

Okay, I'm back from almost three weeks in California and ready to immerse myself in the Games Workshop hobby once again. First up is what's been on the reading stand?

The apocalypse is coming! Worlds will bleed and civilisations will end! Why?

I have finally exercised some self restraint and not rushed out and immediately bought the latest Black Library 40k books. I really wanted to pick up Red Fury as it covers my Blood Angels - I'm painting an army of them at the moment - the new Forge World publication Siege of Vraks and the Planetkill anthology, but my 'to read' pile isn't getting any smaller. To that end I have introduced a new category to this bi-monthly book update; books wanted. I'll catalogue everything here so I don't forget about it, then I can work through the list once I've read some of the books I already own.

Books bought.
  • Apocalypse: Reload

Books read.
  • Battle for the Abyss
  • Apocalypse: Reload
  • 40k 5th edition
Battle for the Abyss was a disappointment. I haven't read much of Ben Counter's stuff other than his previous Horus Heresy novel which I was largely undecided on, so I was eager to give this book a go. The first thing I have to say is that the content of the book was unexpected; it largely deals with spaceship battles rather than battles on the ground. This isn't necessarily a bad thing; indeed it can allow authors to deepen the universe by shedding light on largely unexplored areas of the setting. Look at what Abnett achieved with Legion (which was a great book).

Unfortunately Counter misses the opportunity and instead creates a cliched plot, villains and protagonists and under imagines all the detail which could have redeemed the book. Skraal's 'journey' through the bowels of the Abyss was a prime example which read like a series of random rolls on an RPG encounter table rather than the desperate guerrilla war it could have been. The writing was so hackneyed and on the nose I can't believe a decent editor would have let it through. There is no way that this book is anywhere near the standard of plotting, writing and in particular characterisation, of Fulgrim, Horus Rising or False Gods.

Oh dear - I have the three books of the Souldrinkers trilogy sitting on my shelf still to read.

Apocalypse: Reload was a quick read. The vast majority of this tome is additional datasheets, several of which have already appeared on the GW website. Since I haven't actually played a game of Apocalypse yet they are of limited use to me at the moment. The rest of the book consists of a brief tactica for each army in Apocalypse games (Daemonhunter and Witch Hunter armies are once again ignored completely), army specific strategic assets (nifty), some ideas to spice up Apocalypse games (including notes on the 5th edition rules changes - decide yourself!) and finally a battle report. It's hardly an essential buy, being an expansion of an expansion, but handy for Apocalypse players.

I finally finished reading the new 40k 5th edition cover to cover. It is split into three main sections; the rules, the background and hobby information. Each of the sections is laid out in a visually appealing way and GW get top marks for streamlining both the rules and background. In fact, everything in the book seems far more focused than in previous editions.

The rules are a step forward as far as I am concerned. They seem quite tight on first inspection with a lot of the contentious issues from 4th edition resolved. Consistent wording coupled with good diagrams and even a bit of game designer commentary combine to make a better game in my opinion. Of course I have minor quibbles; why bring back kill points from second edition when they were dropped because they were broken then, and why bring back ramming? Still, I'm looking forward to playing many games of 5th edition over the coming years.

The background section is simply stunning. It makes heavy use of John Blanche illustrations and, while his work is not to everybody's taste, I think it embodies the spirit of 40k better than anything else I've seen. There are no photographs of models in this section - it solely consists of atmospheric paintings and drawings.

It also gathers together the history of the Imperium in a comprehensive six page timeline. The last 300 years are labelled the Time of Ending and highlight the fact that the Imperium is crumbling under attack right across the galaxy.

Another innovation here is that each faction has it's own four page view on the 41st millennium, rather than the Imperio-centric only view of previous editions. The Craftworld and Dark Eldar Commorragh paintings in particular break new ground and are simply stunning.

The third and final chunk of the book is the hobby section. This shows the models and battlefields used in the game. It contains virtually no rules (4th edition had loads of specialist missions, campaign rules, etc) but is a practical guide to playing the game - choosing an army, painting it and making a table with terrain.

All in all I give a big thumbs up to this version of 40k.

Books wanted.
  • Red Fury
  • Planetkill
  • Siege of Vraks 2

Here's what I already own and still need to read:
  • Imperial Armour Three: The Taros campaign
  • Liber Chaotica
  • Storm of Chaos
  • Imperial Infantryman's Primer (Damocles Gulf edition)
  • The Life of Sigmar
  • Faith and Fire
  • Dark Apostle
  • Cardinal Crimson
  • Warriors of Ultramar
  • Dead Sky, Black Sun
  • 13th Legion
  • Kill Team
  • Annihilation Squad
  • Space Wolf
  • Ragnar's Claw
  • Grey Hunter
  • Soul Drinker
  • The Bleeding Chalice
  • Crimson Tears
  • Soldier

Friday, September 5, 2008

NEW MODEL FUND: Brass in pocket

I'm back in profit.

I scraped together £16 from my penny jar and sales of my mobile phone and SLR camera brought in just over £70 so, coupled with the fact I didn't buy any more models, I now have a healthy £36 in the kitty.
  • Total income from sales (and my penny jar) £593.17
  • Less selling fees £41.39
  • Less models bought £515.12
  • New model fund £36.49
I also tried to sell some old Judge Dredd comics and had high hopes for them but no-one bought them so they've gone back in the loft. My next sales will be some 2000AD graphic novels, computer books and role-playing magazines.

I'll need some cash in the near future when the new Warhammer Warriors of Chaos book is released. The plastic wolves and Marauder cavalry look great and a plastic chariot will be a must for me. The two new metal Lords look awesome too. An last but not least, I really want to bust out a Dragon. If no new model is released I may have to convert a High Elf plastic one.

Gary's Dark Elf army book came out recently too so I'm sure he'll be chomping at the bit to get some games in.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

PAINTING: Pledge kept

I haven't blogged anywhere near as much I would like during the past weeks but I hope this entry will make up for that. I've been concentrating on painting my Blood Angels for the Warseer Tale of 40k Painters pledge. It's the end of the first month and I'm happy to declare that I've kept my pledge. I thought I'd give all of my readers the first look at the finished models.

Almost 200 points of Blood Angels muster

I need to paint up 2000 points of Blood Angels over the next year. My aim is to complete 200 points per month which leaves me with a bit of wriggle room if I can't paint anything for a month or two. For my first month I decided to paint five Tactical marines, a Rhino and a Land Speeder.

I finished the Speeder first, as I have blogged here previously.

Speeder front

Speeder side

Speeder side

With the Speeder done inside a week I moved onto the Rhino.

Rhino side

Rhino front

Rhino side

Rhino rear

The Rhino only took a week or so which meant I had two weeks for five Marines. No problem.

I've completely finished the painting of these models but I haven't added the transfers yet. I'll do that later when I've purchased some Micro-Sol. The other five marines I painted months ago, and which will complete this Tactical squad, have some very crinkly transfers curling around their shoulder pads which I want to remove because they look so bad. Thanks for my blog readers who pointed me towards the Bell of Lost Souls transfer tutorial.

This marine has gauntlets from a Chaos Space Marine

Marine with battle damage

Missile launcher

Bare-headed marine

Mark VI Corvus armour

I'm really happy with how these marines turned out and I'm looking forward to getting them onto the battlefield.

I'm in a bit of a quandary for my September pledge. I'm away on holiday for a fortnight so my painting time will be severely restricted. I certainly couldn't paint as many models as I did for August. One option is to paint a single high cost model like a Land Raider - I have one of these already built and undercoated - alternatively I could play a joker and skip the whole month, picking up the challenge for October.

Oh, and I almost forgot, I have the eighth battle in the Vogen campaign up on my battle reports blog. My radical Daemonhunters took on Gary's Chaos Space Marines.

Monday, August 25, 2008

GENERAL: Of Tactical Marines and Land Raiders

I've hauled together my seventh battle report of the Vogen campaign and you can read it here. My Daemonhunters took on Ken's Witch Hunters in the battle of the Ordos.

Meanwhile, apologies for the lack of blog entries. I have been frantically painting my Blood Angels; the Rhino is now finished and I'm right on track to complete the Tactical Marines by the end of the month. Their armour is all but done with two base coats, a Baal Red wash, and two sets of highlights. I'll move on to painting the other details next (pouches, grenades, eyes) then a last coat of Blood Red and the final highlight will see them battle ready.

Then I just need to decide on my next 200 points. I'm, leaning toward my Land Raider because I'm away on holiday for two weeks in September so my painting time will be halved, I've been enjoying painting vehicles, it's already half built and undercoated, it will gobble up a whole load of points (250+) and Land Raiders are now much better in 5th edition. The only negative is that it isn't Troops, and that's what I'm desperate to get on the table.

Maybe the month after I could do some Assault Marines?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

PAINTING: Mud on the tracks

More progress on the Rhino. I painted the metallics with Chaos Black and then Boltgun Metal, then washed them with Badab Black. Once that had dried I started adding the weathering effects.

As you can see from the pics, it is not for the faint-hearted. I took my carefully highlighted tank and messed it up! I started with a light drybrush of Khemri Brown, drawing the brush up and away from the tracks and the front of the Rhino, in the direction that mud and dust would be thrown up. Once that had dried I drybrushed Calthan Brown a little heavier over a smaller area. The idea is that the mud has dried furthest from the tracks and gets darker and thicker as you get closer to the ground.

Next I dabbed on copious amounts of Scorched Brown, especially on areas where the mud mix was clumped (mud mix is a mixture of PVA glue, sand and static grass). Later I'll flick ink over the top to represent mud splatters but I need to add the transfers first.

I also added some realism in the shape of oily deposits around the exhausts, stippled with Chaos Black, then roughly edged with Boltgun Metal. I love this effect and it takes so little time to achieve.

The Rhino is looking really good now, and I'm sure it will be finished by Friday. Watch this space.

Also, I've plundered the files from my old website to bring you the latest instalment of the Vogen campaign. This is actually a page I forget about when I first started posting the battle reports - an introduction. I've placed it at the right chronological point in the blog (i.e. right at the start of the campaign) so it would be easy to miss. That's why I'm pointing it out now.

Monday, August 18, 2008

PAINTING: Pimp my ride

Finally, I have photographic evidence of progress on my Blood Angels.
As you can see I have painted the metallics on the Tactical Marines and given their armour a base coat of Mechrite Red. I was hungover on Sunday so I didn't feel like adding the Blood Red layer onto the Marines; instead I gave the Rhino a coat of Blood Red and then edged it in Blazing Orange. I also washed the crevices with Devlan Mud (is there anything this wash isn't good for?).

For some reason I'm really enjoying painting vehicles at the moment even though finishing the infantry would be more useful. I'm not stressing about it, though - progress is progress. As long as all the models are finished by the end of August I'll be happy.

Meanwhile, war rages on the battlefields of the 41st millennium. I have posted my fifth battle in in the Vogen campaign on my battle reports blog and it contains one of the most memorable gaming moments I have ever had. Check out a scrap between my Daemonhunters and Gary's Eldar here.