Friday, May 30, 2008


Just a quick blog entry to show you my progress with Abaddon. Apologies for the quality of the pictures as they seem a bit dark and some bits are out of focus. Ah well - at least they're just work in progress shots. One day I will get a proper photography set up.

Anyhoo - as usual with virtually all of my models I started painting the metallics first.

I used my tried and tested gold recipe which I've described several times already; Tin Bitz followed by Brazen Brass then Burnished Gold and finally Mithril Silver. I then washed it with a mix of Brown*, Chestnut and a little Purple Ink.

For the silvery metallics I went with Boltgun Metal with a Mithril Silver highlight and a wash of Black Ink.

There were a couple of different washes I mixed up for different metal areas. I watered down some Vermin Brown to represent rust on the coil of barbed wire and I gave the sword a couple of Purple washes to bring out the detail. I'm still not sure if I like the effect or not.

Once I had all the metallics completed I went round the whole model with Chaos Black and tidied up my mistakes. Then I broke out the Boltgun Metal again and dabbed the armour edges to show battle damage.

So just two hours work has half finished Abaddon. The largest areas are all done with just the face and hair, tabard and trophy rack to complete. Oh, and the base.

I'm hoping to get more done over the weekend, so I'll check back in with another progress report later

Thursday, May 29, 2008

GENERAL: Bi-monthly book update

I've done pretty well to curb my book buying instincts over the past couple of months so my reading pile has diminished a bit.

Of course I had to buy the latest 40k codex, Chaos Daemons, especially since I already owned numerous models for the army. I thought that the background information and stories were well written and informative and I certainly approve of the extra space that GW seem to be allocating to this in their codices.

I also had an hour to spare in town so I wondered into Forbidden Planet and found the Brothers of the Snake paperback by Dan Abnett at a reduced price. I hadn't even realised it had been released so I bagged a copy. That will be my next read.

It's evidently going to be a big Dan Abnett year this year.

I just read two new Dan Abnett books back to back; Only in Death and Legion. I really enjoyed both. The Gaunts Ghosts book had a great 'haunted house' atmosphere and racked up the tension only to release it in an orgy of bloodletting. I'm already looking forward to the next GG book which includes the Blood Pact once more.

Legion picked up the pace of the Horus Heresy books after they started to flag with Descent of Angels. It proved to be a real eye-opener with some big twists at the end which seriously re-write what we know about the Space Marine Primarchs, the Heresy and of course the Alpha Legion itself. Highly recommended.

Dan Abnett also had a hand in the Inquisition Sourcebook. I've had this for a while and the fact that it has taken me so long to complete it gives you a clue as to what I think of it; it's a stinker. I really don't understand what GW were trying to do with this book (other than make some cash).

The entries are arranged alphabetically which led me to believe that it was going to be an encyclopedic trawl through the GW archives on the Inquisition. I was rudely disabused of this idea when I came to Jac Draco's entry which is thirty one words long. Thirty one words! That's all we get for a trilogy of books which admittedly are based on old background material, but the Black Library is still selling. In contrast the Ravenor and Eisenhorn books are covered in great detail with even z-list characters getting more attention than the entire Inquisition War trilogy.

So it's not a comprehensive A-Z publication drawing together all of the Inquisition source material. It must then offer us some other insights into how the Inquisition is organised and operates, and give us some new background fluff. Nu-huh. The only new stuff I spotted was Abnett's explanation of psyker's. He splits them up into disciplines (such as Biomancy, Pyromancy, etc) and then each has a level (called an Assignment - these are the alpha, beta, gamma levels that Abnett has included in his novels). Other than that the book is simply a skim through of the most recent Black Library publications. For completists only.

I haven't posted any full length book reviews for a while because I have been reading later books in a series and it seemed pointless to review them before the earlier books. Why review Legion when I haven't reviewed Descent of Angels, for example. My solution was to go back to the old books and re-read them, reviewing them as I go. But where to start? Gaunt's Ghosts? Horus Heresy?

Having read Ravenor Rogue recently, and thus completing the Ravenor trilogy, I decided to go back to book one of the Ravenor trilogy and re-read the lot from there. Of course it's not the same as reading the novel from scratch as I already know where the story is going. It's mainly just a skim through to fix the plot points in my head and scribble a few notes to get the feel for the book. Hopefully this shouldn't impact too much upon my 'real' reading time. Expect the Ravenor review very soon.

Onto the updated list.

Books bought.
  • Chaos Daemons codex
  • Brothers of the Snake (paperback)
Books read.
  • Only in Death
  • Legion
  • Chaos Daemons codex
  • Ravenor
  • Inquisition sourcebook
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
  • Storm of Iron
  • 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

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

MODELLING: Aba-daba-doo-don...


This is just a quick update to bring you all the latest model on my painting production line: Abaddon.

He took about half an hour to construct as he is only made of six pieces and the mold lines were minimal.

I wanted to liven his base up without going too over the top so I glued on some slate and a pile of resin skulls. I also added a coil of barbed wire.

I've undercoated him with Chaos Black tonight and I plan to start painting him tomorrow night when my other half is out and about.

In other news, I got in a game of blood bowl last night and I've already written up the game report here. I played the Skaven Gutter Runners versus Gary's Hells Teef Rippa Orcs. That game was the last in week 1 of the league so you can check out the tables here.

And in yet other news I've started reading Brothers of the Snake by Dan Abnett.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

APOCALYPSE: Chaos Daemons reprise

I have decided to take my daemon prince out of this Apocalypse list and put him back into my Chaos Space Marine army. Here's the updated Chaos Daemons list.


  • Great Unclean One, cloud of flies, aura of decay, breath of chaos, unholy might, instrument of chaos
  • Herald of Nurgle, palanquin, breath of chaos, chaos icon, aura of decay
  • Beast of Nurgle, Noxious Touch
  • 9 Bloodletters, Fury of Khorne
  • 9 Plaguebearers, Noxious Touch
  • 6 Daemonettes, Transfixing gaze
Fast Attack
  • 8 Furies
Heavy Support
  • Daemon Prince, Mark of Slaanesh, instrument of chaos, unholy might, aura of acquiescence, soporific musk, transfixing gaze, pavane of slaanesh
Points: 1153

The loss of the daemon prince has reduced the final points total by almost 250 points. I see that GW has already released two data sheets for the daemons. If you haven't seen them yet you can check out the Bloodthirster Bloodbath here and the Daemonic Forge-host here.Unfortunately neither of them are useable by my army (although I could buy three Soulgrinders to bring my army to 1500 points, give me some shooting and use the datasheet...).

Friday, May 23, 2008

APOCALYPSE: Chaos Space Marines redux

With the release of the new Chaos Space Marines codex and, more recently, the Chaos Daemons Codex, I've have to update my Apocalypse Chaos Space Marines army list yet again. The main thing is that I have stripped out all the daemons as they will all be represented by the Chaos Daemons codex. I chose to do this because I thought the daemons in the new codex had more character than the ones in the Chaos Space Marines codex, had better rules and because they were more expensive.

I also had to ditch the warp rift data sheet. Hopefully Games Workshop will create more data sheets specifically for the Chaos Daemon codex.


  • Daemon Prince
  • Chaos Lord, bike, lightning claw
  • Chaos Lord, mark of nurgle, daemon weapon
  • Chaos Lord, mark of nurgle, palanquin of nurgle, daemon weapon
  • Sorceror, mark of nurgle, nurgles rot
  • 5 Possessed
  • Dreadnought, twin linked lascannon
  • 10 Chaos space marines, plasma gun, lascannon, aspiring champion with powerfist, icon of chaos glory
  • 10 Chaos space marines, plasma gun, lascannon, aspiring champion with powerfist, icon of chaos glory
  • 6 Chaos space marines, plasma gun, aspiring champion with plasma pistol, icon of chaos glory
  • 9 Thousand sons, Sorceror with warptime
  • 7 Plague marines, melta gun, flamer, aspiring champion with power weapon
  • 7 Plague marines, plasma pistol
  • 7 Plague marines, 2 plasma guns, aspiring champion with powerfist
  • 7 Plague marines, plasma gun, flamer, aspiring champion with power weapon
  • 6 Plague marines
Fast Attack
  • 8 Raptors, 2 flamers, aspiring champion with power weapon
  • 1 Spawn
Heavy Support
  • 3 Obliterators
  • Predator, twin linked lascannon, heavy bolter sponsons
  • 6 Havocs, 4 heavy bolters, icon of chaos glory
  • 6 Havocs, 2 autocannon, missile launcher, icon of chaos glory
  • 7 Havocs, 2 melta guns, flamer, aspiring champion with plasma pistol
Points: 3911

So I've lost about 500 points from this list but I have the new, more expensive, daemon list to compensate. The only really tough decision I had to make about what to include in what list was the Daemon Prince. In the end I kept him in with this list because the model is more 'space mariney' and painted in Exigator colours. His background fluff is also better suited to the Chaos Space Marines rather than 'pure' Chaos Daemons.

I still have a half finished Brass Scorpion, 8 Khorne Berzerkers and the mighty Abaddon himself to add to this army so I'm not quite done yet.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

PAINTING: Baneblade rolls off the production line!

The behemoth is finished.

I was supposed to be playing Blood Bowl with Gary last night but work interfered and he couldn't make it. That gave me the opportunity to complete my Baneblade.

I had already painted the hull and repainted the weapons and tracks black. I went over everything metallic with Boltgun Metal then washed it with Black Ink. Then I highlighted the black on the weapons and fuel holders with Charadon Granite.

I really enjoyed painting all the lenses and lights. I chose a red base colour for the lights and blue for the vision lenses. The searchlight was blended from Mechrite Red through Blood Red right up
to Fiery Orange. I feel like I'm 'getting my eye' in with the gradation of colours and subtle painting effects now, having had a bit more practice in the past few weeks.

I've also deliberately gone out of my way to try the Foundation paints and I'm liking them a lot. For the blue vision lenses I started with Necron Abyss, mixed in some Mordian Blue and ended up with Ice Blue highlights. I'm really looking forward to getting some gloss varnish on these bad boys.

It was only when I came to paint the fuel tanks that I discovered I had stuck one set on upside down. Ooops. Still, it's a very minor detail that no-one will spot. Will they?

I spent a bit of time on the exhausts to make them look like they have had some use. I dribbled some Chestnut Ink on there then, when it had dried, I drybrushed some Chaos Black on the ends. I kept the shrine fairly simple with a Boltgun Metal drybrush. I picked out the skulls and figure with Tin Bitz, Brazen Brass and Burnished Gold and then completed the purity seals using Dheneb Stone and Calthan Brown.

You can see how much weathering I added to the tank on the close up of the Baneblade rear and on the sides of the tank. Stuff like this adds so much character to the tank it is well worth the extra work. I drybrushed Calthan Brown around the tracks and bottom half to show dried dirt, then went for Scorched Brown over the top to represent recently churned up mud. I used an old brush to flick Brown Ink all up the sides and bottom of the Baneblade to add yet another layer of grime. The final touch was to add a few clumps of static grass to represent clods of earth trapped in the tracks.

Last but not least I had to name the Baneblade. Normally I'm great at this sort of thing but I had a real mental block this time. I Eventually settled on Gladiator and painted it on the name plaque. It didn't look right; both the name itself and the way I had painted it. I painted the name out and had another ponder. Next I chose Goliath and carefully painted that in. It still looked pants. I also discovered that my Basilisk was named Goliath. Again I painted the name away.

In desperation I searched through all my old transfer sheets and found Justus Extremis. I liked the font and the name seemed to have some gravitas so I went with that.

Justus Extremis. That'll do.

Now I need to come up with a history for it and get it out onto the Apocalypse battlefield!

Friday, May 16, 2008

PAINTING: Starting the Baneblade

I've had a day off work today so I've been able to indulge in some gaming activities. It's about time.

Normally I do all my computer based stuff, including updating my blogs, first and then try to squeeze in some painting later. More often than not I either get nothing painted or much less than I had thought - probably because I get sidetracked and start surf the internet. Today I dived straight in on painting my Baneblade.

The key to regaining my painting mojo was making a big effort to spend thirty minutes painting after work during the week. I drybrushed Orkhide Shade in ragged stripes over the tank on Monday night. That was it. Then on Wednesday I highlighted the green with a light drybrush of Knarloc Green. Again, not a lot. On Thursday I drybrushed Calthan Brown on the other parts of the hull. Nothing to write home about. Friday saw me highlighting that with Tau Sept Ochre. Still not much, but it all stacked up. It meant that I felt like I was getting somewhere and I didn't have it all to do today.

I was trying to match the paintjobs on my other Cadian tanks but I couldn't remember the colours I'd used for them (note to self - keep a painting diary). Instead I used the Foundation paints to approximate the colours. The green has come out pretty close although the higher pigment count means it is a lot richer. The brown stripes are much more yellow than I had expected and don't match at all. Again the colour is far richer and deeper than the regular paints, I like it, so I decided to keep it and not change it. It's a Baneblade, it's different from the other vehicles anyway so I'll not worry about it.

This morning I used Brown Ink to wash around the rivets (and there are a lot of rivets on this monster). In the afternoon my task was to re-undercoat everything but the hull with Chaos Black. This included the tracks, weapons, engine and icons. It was a laborious job but will pave the way for me to complete the tank over the weekend (I hope).

I did no painting on Tuesday night because Gary came over and we got a couple of games of Blood Bowl in. We played Dwarfs against Chaos and Dark Elves versus Undead. You can read the after match reports on my Blood Bowl blog here.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

APOCALYPSE: Chaos Daemons

Following the release of the Chaos Daemons codex on the 10th May I have stripped all of the Daemonic models out of my Chaos Space Marine army and used them to build a Chaos Daemon army. I expect the army to play terribly on the tabletop because it is essentially just a random collection of models buy hey, it's a 'free' army for a new codex so I'm not complaining.

Here's the list:

  • Great Unclean One, cloud of flies, aura of decay, breath of chaos, unholy might, instrument of chaos
  • Herald of Nurgle, palanquin, breath of chaos, chaos icon, aura of decay
  • Beast of Nurgle, Noxious Touch
  • 9 Bloodletters, Fury of Khorne
  • 9 Plaguebearers, Noxious Touch
  • 6 Daemonettes, Transfixing gaze
Fast Attack
  • 8 Furies
Heavy Support
  • Daemon Prince, Mark of Slaanesh, instrument of chaos, unholy might, aura of acquiescence, soporific musk, transfixing gaze, pavane of slaanesh
  • Daemon Prince, Mark of Tzeentch, iron hide, instrument of chaos, unholy might, master of sorcery, soul devourer, bolt of Tzeentch, daemonic gaze, boon of mutation
Points: 1398

As you can see I've gone a bit bonkers on the gifts and upgrades. That's because I was trying to make a 1500 point army. Even so, I fell about 100 points short. In theory I could add a Soulgrinder or maybe some Tzeentch daemons to cover the shortfall and then cut back on the upgrades but I don't know that I'll ever field my daemons as a proper 1500 point army anyway. In all likelihood I'll just use them as part of an Apocalypse army.

I'll be back shortly with my Apocalypse Chaos Space Marine redux.

Friday, May 9, 2008

PAINTING: Keeper of Secrets

Who'd uv thunk it? I've actually manged to get some painting done and finished a model. Not only that but it is ready before the release of it's codex, not months after.

I posted some in progress pics of my Slaanesh Greater Daemon a while back and, after three hours working on the beast tonight, she is finished.

I went for the Slaanesh scheme printed in the latest White Dwarf; pale purple flesh contrasting with black cloth.

This older model (I think I bought it sometime in the Rogue Trader era) had lots of extra detailing which meant I had to use a larger palette of colours. You can see some gold on there as well as silver armour and some olive green. While I was painting these bits it made me wonder where all these daemons get their clothes, armour and jewellery from. Surely they are from another dimension and these petty things are beyond them?

I'm aware that these pics aren't the best as they were taken with a flash, without a tripod and clearly not with a decent background, but you get the general idea. It's also not the greatest paintjob or model but it is the most detailed painting I've done in an age and I really enjoyed it.

I'll be buying Codex Daemons tomorrow and I'm hoping I'll be able to field a 1500 point army without having to buy a single model. Talking to a GW staffer the other day about this model gave me some food for thought. He suggested that, because this Greater Daemon is much smaller than the current model, I use her as either a Herald or Daemon Prince. I'll certainly bear that in mind when building my army list as it will give me a few more options.

I'm now looking forward to painting my next model which will be either the Baneblade or Abaddon.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

GENERAL: It's all over now

I thought I'd swing by to give you all a heads up that I've posted the final campaign turns and aftermath for the Phoenix campaign. This campaign turned into a little bit of a monster as Gary and I played ten games over three months, painted countless extra models and dug deep into our tactical nous.

I hope you enjoyed it.

Monday, May 5, 2008

GENERAL: Roam where you want to, roam around the world

Hello strangers! How are you keeping? Where have I been, you ask? Well, I sure as hell haven't been blogging, so what have I been up to?

It all started at the back end of April when Gary and I restarted our Blood Bowl league. I ditched the rest of my gaming activities and concentrated on getting the models and dedicated blog ready. We then played our first game and I wrote up the game report here.

At around the same time, on the 20th April to be precise, Newcastle United played one of the biggest games of their season; at home to Sunderland. It was a hell of an occasion and I took a few photos, one of which I've blogged below.

When I arrived at my seat there was a black card attached to it so I held it aloft at the appointed time. You can see the effect in the photo as the whole stadium showed it's black and white stripes.

The tension was palpable, as at that time both sides could still be relegated. On the way into the ground we passed the incoming Sunderland fans. I took a video on my digital camera.

Michael Owen scored the first goal for us after just three minutes, then Sunderland played their way back into the match for the rest of the half. They couldn't get a goal, though, and that meant that when Newcastle were awarded a penalty right at the end of the first half we could all but secure the game if Owen scored. I took another video clip of the action.

Despite the goalkeeper getting a hand to the ball, it squirmed in and put us two ahead. The second half saw no more goals so Newcastle won the game and bragging rights for me!

Since then, both Newcastle and Sunderland have avoided relegation so there are two more derby matches to look forward to next season.

With the Newcastle Sunderland derby match out of the way my attentions turned to my upcoming holiday to Rome. This was a romantic anniversary trip with my girlfriend, Sam. We got in late on Sunday night, then got up early on Monday morning to visit the Vatican.

The architecture was simply stunning, as were all the artworks on display. The Sistine chapel lived up to all my expectations as one of the crowning achievements of Western art and a soaring symbol of the heights that humanity can reach.

While I was in there, some bastard stole my wallet.

We spent the next three hours of our romantic trip making statements to the police who really couldn't have cared less about the plight of two stupid English tourists. I had to cancel all my credit cards and then rely on my girlfriend to pay me through the rest of the holiday.

We didn't let it spoil the trip, though. On the second day we saw the Colosseum and the Pantheon, the Trevi fountain and the Spanish Steps and the Villa Borghese, and then went out for a romantic meal. Are you feeling the romance yet?

Day three saw us picking through the remains of the Roman Empire on Palatine Hill and at the Forum, then we climbed up to the top of the Vittorio Emmanuel II Monument to get spectacular views over the whole city. We flew home exhausted but happy.

There was no time for rest. We were back home for one night then out on the road again.

We drove up into Scotland for a family wedding. This was a very posh affair in a beautiful location. The church was in St Monans, clinging onto the cliff face above the sea and the reception was at Kellie castle, a pretty National Trust property a few miles inland. We were incredibly lucky with the weather which had been forecast rain but stayed dry until the Sunday when we made our way back.

So today is Monday and that's what I did on my holidays. What does this have to do with Games Workshop games? Not a right lot but it does explain why I haven't been blogging lately.

Some of the things I did while I was away might have an impact on my gaming though. I got a good deal on a new digital SLR (Olympus 410) so expect to see a sharp jump in the quality of my photographs once I get to grips with the beast.

The sheer cost of my excursions should force me to start e-baying my unwanted stuff very shortly, especially if I want to buy any new models. Remember that my New Model Fund is in deficit at the moment!

My experience of walking around Rome, and especially the Vatican, made me really want to start a 40k Cities of Death board based on a Cardinal World. I'd love to recreate some of the marble and brick colours and textures I saw, and I've never seen this approach taken before so I might come up with something unique.

That's a long way off. I already have a lot to do in the immediate future. I plan to get some games of Blood Bowl in and update the Blood Bowl blog with the rest of my old content. I have a ton of books I have read but not yet reviewed and a lot more books to read. I also need to complete my Chaos Space Marine and Apocalypse models.

I have made a little progress on the painting front, though. Before I went away I got a couple of hours painting time and I decided to make a start on my ancient Slaanesh Greater Daemon model. The colour scheme was inspired by the latest issue of White Dwarf (UK 341). It is relatively subtle and uses a very small purple/black palette.

I took these pictures with my new camera and a harsh flash because the light is so bad, so they are quite unforgiving. Nevertheless, you can see where I'm going with this model. The skin was the biggest area so I started with a mix of Hormagaunt Purple and Dheneb Stone then added more and more Skull White to each successive layer.

Next I drybrushed the armour with Boltgun Metal, did a Black Ink wash and then a light drybrush of Mithril Silver. In retrospect I should have done this stage first so I wouldn't have had to worry about damaging the skin.

The claws and horns were a mix of Hormagaunt Purple, Liche Purple and Chaos Black, with Bleached Bone added for the highlights.

I may add some gold or brass for the rest of the decorations and then some grey highlights for the black cloth and then this little lass will be ready in time for Codex Daemons.

Phew, that was a monster blog entry, probably the longest I've ever written. I'm off to the Newcastle Chelsea match this afternoon and then I'll be back later in the week.