30 Jun 2017

New 40k edition, new army!

As that's the unofficial motto for all wargamers, I thought I'd dive in with a new army to see how it plays.... and the winner was Necrons!

These poor misunderstood chaps have had a bit of a journey.... I think most of the troops were from eBay auctions originally and were a mix of colours and basing.  One of my mates then added a bunch of vehicles when they came out and painted them in a spiffy metallic blue colour.... and then decided Necrons weren't for him and passed them onto me for a very good price to keep them in our gaming group.  I subsequently decided I had too many armies (as you do) and passed them onto a friend for his son to use.  His son has decided he's going to follow the chaos gods, so shiny metal evil chaps were no use to him and so I got a whole bunch of chaos models together and swapped them back.  So I decided to get on with it and make them a cohesive force for 8th edition!

My approach when painting armies is to get the bulk of the rank and file done together as I really dislike using unpainted models on the tabletop.  I'm fine for them to be used whilst painting happens, but I make sure that every time I use them, there is some progress. The gaming should then encourage me to paint more and the virtuous gaming/painting circle sustains itself!

I spent a couple of hours repairing the large warrior contingent and I found I had enough to paint up two max sized units of 20.  I do like to start with maximum sized units as they can always then be split out as required.
Classic metallic base as I knew I could recreate it across the army quickly.  To this I added a brass head, shoulder pads and chestplate.  I wanted a cold brass colour to keep them looking menacing and I'm pleased with his they came out.  The classic Necron warrior only has one pose, but I think that suits their relentless nature rather well as these guys are the 40k equivalent of skeleton hordes.

Next up.... another 20 looking almost identical

The main difference is the brass gun barrels so that I can tell them apart if there is a swirling melee on the battlefield.  I'm not a huge fan of the green acrylic the classic Necrons have on their guns, the effect just looks wrong on a 28mm miniature to my eye, so it was nice that doing my overspray for the repaint helped me fix this.  I think GW probably agree these days, as none of the more modern sculpts in the Necron range use acrylic, this paint job should tie the warriors in with their newer sculpted bretheren.

The new rules mean these chaps spend quite a lot of time on the tabletop as "reanimation protocols" works every turn a warrior is dead now instead of being a one shot pseudo invulnerable save.  With the bulk of my menacing warriors done, I'll be turning my attention to the more specialised areas of the army next - HQs and Immortals next up I think.

27 Jun 2017

Epic 40k chaos army, painted following purchasing for once!

As Eddie has been performing sterling work keeping the blog going, I thought I'd better actually blog about what I've been doing.  I've actually had a sustained period of painting going on, somewhat unusual for me as I tend to slow down when not taking part in the analogue hobbies painting challenge (AHPC).

Back in the AHPC, I got interested in Epic 40k given the good work of GregB in the game.  Looking on eBay I was surprised at how cheap the figures were for an out of production game, so I bought a box of Chaos troops and two of fellow gamers were "encouraged" to play.  Fortunately they had about as much willpower as me and eBay was rather quickly stripped of everything of reasonable value that it had!

As I'm sure readers will empathise with, we tend to find that once the initial excitement of a new game passes, it's tough to get it played unless the figures are ready as the next shiny thing is only an internet click away..... so we resolved to get things painted quickly to make the games look good and here are my offerings from the Wordbearers, who are a chaos force fanatically devoted to worshipping chaos gods and their daemons.

First up, two retinues (tactical squads) with attached rhinos.
Nice and quick with a block colour and wash approach.  GW does love giving chaos figures horned helmets, but at this scale they work nicely to add another colour in.  I liked the base sizes GregB uses for his epic forces so I acquired some MDF bases to spread the figures out a little.  The vehicles have decals applied to give another point of interest as free handing tiny tanks like this is something I shan't be attempting!
 Next up, some support in the shape of a Havoc squad.  These are the heavy weapon chaps and I put these on different shaped bases for easy recognition - an idea I stole from other entrants to the AHPC who use base sizes to denote officers in other games.
 Now to the weirder stuff.... the old school chaos force comes with marines riding steeds of slaanesh, so I decided to use these as chaos bikers

Next up, some daemons to summon.  These are from Vanguard miniatures and are very nice Daemonette and Bloodletter stand ins as the original GW models for these figures are pretty hard to come by in numbers sufficient to use as units.

 Bloodletters - nice and simple but with plenty of detail to look interesting
Same with the daemonettes, nice teeny tiny little models.
 After a few games it quickly became apparent that I needed some terminators to help reach out across the board as Chaos has no artillery to speak of.  I picked up a pretty badly beaten up lot from eBay that had just enough terminators to make a unit of if I paired them with leaders and some khorne daemons as I suspect the terminators will be summoning daemons pretty sharpish to give them support when they drop into the backfield.  Thin bases as that's what they came with and consistent basing isn't required in epic as GW changed their basing convention through the different versions of the game and didn't want to annoy veteran players!

 The beaten up lot I just mentioned had a few of the cult troops, namely berzerkers and noise marines, so I did the unthinkable and shoved them together to make a unit (with the odd daemonette added to bulk them out) and painted them all pink to be slaaneshi noise marines

That lot also included (told you eBay was good value!) enough marines for another detachment of them.  These are a different generation of sculpts to the above marines and will give me plenty for the bigger games.  I do need to get some rhinos sorted for this lot and the noise marines above.
 Next up, some more daemons from Vanguard miniatures.  These will represent daemonic beasts and are little hounds that I painted pink to be easy to pick out from the basing.  They don't hit as hard as the daemons above, but are faster so will be able to keep up with the bikers for example.
 As part of my starting force I thought I'd best get some armoured support ready, and what says armoured support better than some land raiders?  a unit of four, mixing two marks of the vehicle because that's what I had.
And lastly, the compulsory group shot.  The eagle eyed amongst you will notice I've added another squad of land raiders, but their decals need finishing, so they didn't get their own shot above....
We've played some really good games of epic and they look grand as we all worked hard to get painted forces together.  It's really pleasing to have a "finished" force ready to pull out whenever we want to use it as 40k 8th edition seems to have grabbed our attention and will no doubt do so for a while....

26 Jun 2017

Anphelion close to completion

I’ve been forging ahead with getting the Spartan Scenics sets finished. It’s been a long job but the end is in sight. I still need to do a few small details, some varnishing and a bundle of the little joining widgets but it is nearly done. I couldn’t resist putting it out on the table for a gander!

The varnish will reduce the glare on the metallic shutters so they should look a bit better once finished.

A shout out to the Silverback for the fantastically well timed transfers which look great on the doors.

I got the Nu Marines for 40K as well over the last week and couldn’t resist getting them put together. For easily kits the poses are pretty cool and they went together well. I was spraying when it was too hot in my eagerness to get things done so some of them are facing being striped and resprayed. Annoying but my own fault!

Inceptors are cool models which really remind me of some of the baddies mech suits from the Rifts RPG. 

The figures themselves are good but the new flying stands. GW? What were you thinking? They are strange sort of perch things that don’t actually go into the models. It’s a small join as well so it looks prone to breakage to me. Needless to say I ditched them and did my own basing thing.


17 Jun 2017

The Pentagram turns 2,000

So firstly an apology as I rather rashly suggested I'd be posting every couple of weeks... turns out work and home decided otherwise!

That said the work project from Hell goes live this weekend so I may, may, be back.

Now I've not been quiet during the last couple of months and have accidentally reached 2000 points with my Age of Sigmar army. I say accidentally because I've just been painting what I fancied and then discovered it all adds up to a magical 2K.

Let me introduce you to my new units who have already been out making friends...

Minotaurs / Bullgors
Part of the Beastmen Faction
GW insist on calling them Bullgors; everyone in our group calls them Minotaurs. Armed with Great Axes because they look cool! They've managed to get into combat once so far in 3 games; they spent the other 2 picking arrows out of their hides...

Lots of fun to paint as long as you like painting skin! May need to add a few more of these as they need a banner. Why? Well, because. Sheesh...

Warp Lightning Cannon
This was a joy to paint and has so far been awesome on the battlefield. I painted it because I fancied doing some artillery (steady Eddie) and as I'd already sprayed up the wood with mournfang brown I dived straight in.

The crystal was a lot of fun and I've tried to show the power of the crystal as it cycles up to blast the bad guys. Yes bad guys. Everyone who faces Chaos is a bad guy. Nyah nyah nyah...

So whatever Varistat tells you this is not a Cygor. This is a Ghorgon. And yes I painted this one because I wanted to paint something big and scary (and the Cygor is less scary. Honest)

A whole heap of purple wash on this fellow together with more bone painting than an undead regiment of skeletons...

Two battles and two very different results. Skaven fell to him in droves; Goblins laughed at him as he appears to have an aversion to nets. Sounds like several Newcastle strikers I could mention!

Gorebeast Chariot
And this is one of my favourite models to paint so far. Lots of little details and it had a lot of fun on the tabletop the other night as it is fast!

This chariot is actually in the Slaves to Darkness faction but I have dedicated it to Khorne (it was a complicated ceremony and made a right mess of the carpet) so this is now part of my Khorne Bloodbound!

All weapons are painted orange in my Khorne army. My colleague, Silverback, has audited the model and confirmed all weapons are indeed orange.

In case you're wandering the orange does not actually contain any orange paints.

Base - Mournfang Brown
Base - Averland Sunset
Wash - Casandora Yellow x2
Dry - Wrack White (heavy around sharp edges)
Wash - Casandora Yellow x2

I allow the washes to dry horizontally so they don't pool too much. I really do rate the new Citadel Shades.

And finally...
Back to the Beastmen Faction again for a Leader. I actually lack leaders in my army so I'm pleased this guy appeared on my to do list.

I decided to paint his hair as a stand out feature and he went blond. He is now known as Thor Pantene. In his first battle he charged the enemy and did, well, very little. I think he spent the time exchanging hair colouring tips with the Goblins... a little underwhelming so far!

So there we are. Thanks for taking a look and next time: Stormvermin, Or new 40K!


12 Jun 2017

Mostly works in progress.

As part of my planned dockside terrain set I’d bought the TTCombat container ship set. Great set with loads of value as it comes with several containers as well as the ship itself. I finished the containers at the back end of last year but hadn’t progressed the ship itself.
I resolved to get it done and so it was given a blast of undercoat…..

….and then the colours were added with large scale dry brushing.

I’ve recently got hold of some of the Vallejo rust powders and plan to make this a somewhat battered freighter.

Also sat neglected in my study was the enormous Spartan Scenics spaceship that I purchased several years ago. I’ve always liked the idea of having landed shuttles and ships as scenery and that’s why I got it. It too got an undercoat prior to painting.

I wanted to layer up the paint to lighten the look of it up from the base grey so I started with heavy dry brushing of greys getting lighter until I got to white.

Masking went on and I proceeded to orange…..

 …..then red. I’ve printed some special decals for it so those need to go on before I can weather it.

With the threat of a new edition, I decided that the Howling Griffons needed some reinforcements especially as these have been sat in the queue for ages as well.

These boys take my 365 tally up to 226.

In the drive to get things done I ended up letting my eye fall upon the rest of the Spartan scenic sets that I had. It think I’ve been procrastinating somewhat due to the size of the project to get the starter and corridor sets done but the new edition of 40K has egged me on and this will be usable for Infinity, 40K, Infinity, Pulp City and soooo much more so I decided to get stuck in and get it done once and for all.

The kits themselves are a cracking concept that was badly delivered. The design is excellent and looks a treat but the building of them is dogged by the fact that it takes soooo much work to put them together. We are spoilt somewhat these days as MDF kits are pretty awesome but these are hard work. All the slots need significant cutting and filing to enable it to fit together as they were cut too small. I’ve done the bulk of it now so I am methodically spraying, constructing sub-assemblies, spraying again before construction and then the final spray. After that the details need picking out. I’ve prepared some decals for the sections. A long job but once they are done it’ll be a cool set to use and they’ll be enough of it to lay out a pretty big base. This is just the additional corridor set in the photos. the starter set has even more corridors and rooms as well.

I’ve been wanting to get it done so I can use it as the Anphelion Base from the Anphelion Project Forgeworld book. IG and Marines vs Tyranids. Right up my street!

With all these MDF kits I have been gathering (or more accurately hoarding) leftover bits of MDF to the point where I have a box full of them. I’d put together a couple of Epic things from them but nothing bigger. However I was browsing the internet for a radar/comms array for the Anphelion base when one that I saw sparked my imagination and the following monstrosity was born!

Needs some details and paneling but you get the idea.

 I was pretty motivated before but sheesh…8th Edition 40K has lit a fire under me!