Sunday, 2 December 2012

Painting the Stormtalon

Seems a fair few people have some hate for this Space Marine flyer, but personally I really like the boxy Space-Marines-make-an-Apache look it has.  So I bought two (one is still boxed, but that's a different story) to add to the Sanguine Swords.  Let's have a look at what I did to ruin this particularly nice bit of grey plastic:

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Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Lost In The Warp

Been a while, huh?  Some of that is due to family problems, but mostly it's because I've been too busy doing actually hobby stuff to write about it.  It's safe to say that I'm very happy with how Sixth Edition is working out so far, and it has shook the meta up enough to encourage new builds and new lists (despite Necrons supposedly being the top dog right now, I've been playing Space Marines for the additional choice their Codex brings).  Everything old is new again.

What's Coming Up?

I've got 40k Doubles coming up in September, for which I need to paint only half a dozen models.  This is a first in that I'm actually taking an army that's nearly complete, but I somehow still suspect I'll be painting like a daemon that last week before the event.  I'm trying out the new Citadel paints properly for these models and so far it's coming out well.

I've also been expanding the Sanguine Swords with flyers which so far consists of two Storm Talons and a Storm Raven (used under the Grey Knight allies rules).  The new Dark Vengeance set will help fill out the Tactical Squads, as I'm unhappy with what are now ten or eleven year old paint jobs and would love to redo those models.

The Necron army has embraced Sixth with gusto, with Necron Warriors returning to the fore and the Scythe kits being a huge boon.  They're still odd when you're used to playing Marines, but they work very well.  Compared to the suffering of pre-Codex fifth, it's nice to be able to use Necrons competitively again.  My beloved Deathmarks are now worthwhile too, but join Tyranids in waiting for the spam to pop out the can.

Now if you'll excuse me, I really need to get back to painting...
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Sunday, 1 July 2012

First Thoughts on Sixth

There is only war!

Sixth edition hit yesterday and after some quick skimming (not giving it my full time until Monday night) it looks like it's going achieve most everything I want from it.  I wasn't going to make a post at this point, but the amount of DOOOM posting I see again made me realise that I have to raise my voice, lest the signal get lost in the noise.  You can't stop the signal.
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Friday, 15 June 2012

Sixth Edition Soon

It would be fair to say I'm kinda excited.

That is all.

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Monday, 11 June 2012

Unboxing: Super Dungeon Explore (Re-Print)

YAY!  I've been waiting for this box for a little while since I discovered it, and I was very happy when it arrived.

Firstly we have the box itself which is cute, colourful and pretty sturdy.  It'll survive a few knocks, and is more stubborn than say, an Island of Blood box or similar.  It's also packed to the brim with stuff.

I must say I love the art style of Super Dungeon Explore - one of the contributing reasons to getting the product was that the OH wanted to play too, and that's down to mostly the art style.

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Sunday, 27 May 2012

Throne of Skulls, April 2012

Wheeew.  This Throne of Skulls was my first solo Games Workshop event and even though I was sick, I still had a blast.  I didn't have a bad opponent all day and the events team were their usual enthusiastic selves, which I find really adds to the atmosphere.
You can see the list I took in one of my earlier posts, here, but without further delay let's get to the games!

Game Zero - Blood Angels
Ok, so I lied, we've got one further thing to cover before I start the true run-down.  One of our members of "Team Fail" had to drop out at short notice, so we press-ganged a replacement.  This man had no 40k experience whatsoever, though he did used to play WFB with us waaay back in the distant past of our student days.

I.  Got.  Trounced.  By a man who had never played the game before.  There's something about that particular Blood Angel army I just can't counter and a lot of my planned changes to the army were inspired by this game.
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Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Tentacle Bento - Will Not Be Silenced

Recently there was a Kickstarter campaign by the fairly well known Soda Pop Miniatures (Relic Knights / Super Dungeon Explore) to make a parody card game based on the dating-sim games of Japan.  I was totally all over that.  Quick, silly card game with cartoon schoolgirls is pretty much top of my "pay attention to me" list.

Until a blogger got upset and Kotaku kicked up a fuss - that caused Kickstarter to pull the project at about the 210% funded mark without even speaking to Soda Pop or seemingly doing any research at all.  Which is a major bummer and rather a nasty mark against Kickstarter.  I don't like censorship in my media, especially uninformed censorship.

Soda Pop have moved their fund raising efforts to their own website, so if this game sounds like it might appeal to you at all (if you've bought anything from Soda Pop in the past, you're likely to at least want to take a look) please go and have a gander at the project over at Soda Pop Girls.

You don't have to like it, but I'd appreciate it if you took a look.  If you'd like a slightly longer version of events and some links to other crowd-funded projects that are worth a look, jump over to Frontline Gamer's post here.

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Monday, 14 May 2012

Games That Define Us

(As suggested by Frontline Gamer's post here).

Ten games that define me as a wargamer, well now, that's rather a difficult one.  You should all know these games, or at least most of them, but they're what brought me to where I am today (and will explain a large portion of my unwillingness to abandon the Big Dog).  The years are roughly when I started playing them, according to the dim haze of my memory.

Game One: Warhammer Fantasy Battle Fourth Edition (1995)

This was my first wargame, if you're not counting Chess.  I split a starter box with a friend, though I had to paint the horrible little goblin spearmen for him, just so I could get the High Elves.  I doubt we played it right, and my Prince Imrik spent longer off the table "Flying High" than he did actually involved in the games.  I  loved every game of it as only a child could.
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Friday, 20 April 2012

Gearing up for Throne of Skulls

You might have noticed a severe lack of content around here lately.  The reasons for that are three-fold, starting with this one:

This game owns me.  Totally.  The ending sucked all the donkeys, but it was a few minutes of poor in a world of awesome.
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Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Gallery: Funfest, March 2012

Most of you will be unfamiliar with Funfest.  That's primarily because it only exists between about half a dozen of my fellow gamers, but the concept is quite simple - go to a venue with great tables and bring your "fun" lists rather than the competitive list you're grooming.  So, early in March we went to Warhammer World in good old Lenton Lane and played some great games.  I love Warhammer World - if you're in the UK and you play Games Workshop games you should get down there on a weekend, it's a great place.

The armies in attendance were seven thousand points of Dark Angels, around three thousand points of Tyranids, two thousand of Chaos (Wordbearers), two thousand of Imperial Guard, some one and a half thousand of Ultramarines, one and a half thousand points of Draigowing (Blood Raven Librarian army) and two thousand of my own Space Marines (Sanguine Swords).

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Saturday, 3 March 2012

Review: Infinity Markers by Micro Art Studio

This is less of a review and more of a gush.  You've been warned.

Now that's out of the way, I love these markers.  Given Infinity's reliance on markers (there's usually more markers on table than miniatures) I wasn't particularly pleased with the print-outs-on-slottabases approach, and just leaving coloured dice works for a while but bogs the game down with "What's that one mean again?".  These markers solve that.  They're at-a-glance clear, they have the name of what they represent printed on them and they use the exact symbols from the rulebook.  All this leads to a very nice set of markers that enhance the game.

I'm going to address the main issue I hear raised about these - they're too expensive.  In my opinion, they're not.  Some of Micro Art Studio's stuff is (£15 for something GW sell for £5 being the optimal example), but these are worth the price without any reservations.  I bought three sets, broken down as follows:

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Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Review: District 5 Holo Ads

I have a fair bit to review from the folks over at Micro Art Sudio, but I want to start with my favourite piece - the District 5 Holo Ads.  MAS have promised us another set of these sometime in the future, which I'm very much looking forward to, but this is what we have released right now.

As you can tell from the intro up there, I liked the Holo Ads.  I think they bring something to an Infinity board that was previously missing, and that's character.  You can spot 40k terrain miles away from its style and that elevates it over "generic sci-fi battlefield", these ads do exactly the same thing for me in regards to Infinity - it takes the battlefield from generic sci-fi and uplifts it to an Infinity battlefield.
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Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Video Review: Broadsword Class Dreadnought

My first video review.  I'm so proud.

No, wait, I'm not.  The audio is terrible and the picture is out of focus for most of it (I blame never having used this camera to take video before).  I'll do better next time.  Let me know what you think below, but be gentle.

The Broadsword is an impressive model and well worthy of being the centrepiece of any Sorylian fleet.  A few problems in casting quality mar the experience, but otherwise a very nice piece that addresses one of my key issues with Firestorm Armada quite well.

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Monday, 13 February 2012

Monday Musing: Is the Combined Army a Metaphor for Games Workshop?

That's a bit of an odd title, isn't it?  This is because it's a bit of a tongue-in-cheek response to Frontline Gamer's lengthy and fan-favourite article "Is the Imperium a Metaphor for Games Workshop?" (here).

I say tongue-in-cheek because his article is fairly long, obviously has had a lot of thought go into it and expresses the rage at the very centre of his dark being.  I, on the other hand, don't write articles that long, generally don't put that much thought into them and am just running with the idea.  Don't be too offended, it's all in good fun.
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Thursday, 9 February 2012

Mars Hungers, the 1500pt Version

Throne of Skulls is in April.


That's less than 80 days.  Must get the metal men painted.  As I've changed colour schemes I can't even use my older troops (painting over silver is rather annoying when you're using black as a secondary colour).  I refuse to do another caffeine-fuelled week of pain as I paint the whole force - the come-down migraine after the event hurt too much to consider doing that again.  I doubt my performance at work was particularly good that week either.
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Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Replacement Flying Stems

Don't you just hate it when a flying stem snaps?  I mean, they're cheap enough to replace but it's not the cost that's the problem.  You're going to be spending at least thirty minutes drilling out the old stem then repairing, repainting and reflocking the base.  All in all it's a complete pain.  I was just becoming comfortable with using the original stems "as is" (I magnetise all my Land Speeder stems, but that's not necessary or easy for the Necron vehicles) when disaster struck and I decided to investigate sturdier options.  I wasn't particularly happy with just replacing it with brass rod and was left thinking "Why oh why do they have to be stupid, brittle acrylic?".  Then a lucky Google turned up a thread on Warseer (rare to get something useful there, I know, but bear with me) that led me to the following person.
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Friday, 3 February 2012

Vallejo Polyurethane Matt Varnish Review

I'm not a massive fan of varnish.  At least, I've always found Purity Seal a bit lacking and gloss varnish horribly off-putting, not to mention some of the cheaper varnishes I've ruined models with.  So I thought I'd get some of Vallejo's Polyurethane Matt Varnish (Vallejo number 27.527) and give it a whirl.

Unfortunately the only painted, metal model I had was from years ago and looks horrible.  At least it didn't matter if I ruined it.  Here are our initial shots.

I really, really hate the paint job on this guy.  I loved the idea of using the missile launcher hand, but my painting has come a long way since this Librarian.  I'd also convert him out of plastic if I were using him today, man I hate metal.  As you can see, not much in the way of detail to ruin, but it's a good enough surface to see any colour distortion.

I didn't clean him, dust him or anything before applying the varnish.  I figured if we go for worst case scenario and we came out good, that'd be proof of the product.  The varnish itself I applied through my airbrush - one of the big advantages for me of this varnish is that I can shoot it through the brush.  I'm not a massive fan of brushing varnish on.
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Wednesday, 1 February 2012

What's Wrong with the Doomsday Ark?

Recently I was asked "What's wrong with the Doomsday Ark?" after I expressed some distaste for the unit, which resulted in a rather ranty and overlong response for the medium (Facebook isn't suited to these kinds of rants).  Here's the tidied-up, reasonable and hopefully useful response for you to digest, dear reader.  It's still fairly opinionated, but hopefully with enough logic to explain those opinions.

The Doomsday Ark is an expensive (just a few points shy of being our most expensive) Heavy Support choice for the Necron army.  It carries a long-range, high-strength, low-AP, large blast weapon that becomes significantly weaker when the unit is moving.  Its primary role is stand-off fire power, and suffers greatly if it has to move.  In a lot of ways you can think of it like a Devastator Squad without the cover save.
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Monday, 30 January 2012

Monday Musings: Lady Luck Can be Defeated

The Lady herself
I dislike "pure" strategy games - chess holds no real attraction for me (though I played it obsessively as a child), nor do regional variations on these styles of game.  Having Lady Luck play her hand by involving dice in my games engages me.  Conversely anything that is too focused on chance ruins my enjoyment - if one dice roll can define a whole game, why didn't we just play dice?

This is why I play Warhammer 40,000.  I have my goals, my list, but I must also contend with the actions of my opponent and the knowledge that no action within the game is a certainty.  A perfect plan against a robotic opponent would still fail if the general cannot adapt to the whims of the dice.

What does all this have to do with the post title?  Well, generalship within these types of games comes down to attempting to limit the affect the dice can have on your victory.  Your grand plans mean nothing if they are going to rely on a fifty-fifty chance towards the end of the game.  There are more than a few methods to limit this exposure to risk, and setting them up is the basis of generalship in Warhammer 40,000.  Here's some of the easier ways to keep Lady Luck from interfering in your games.
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Shadows In The Warp

From The Warp Blog Group

Echoes in the Signal

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