Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Rising Sun... The beginning...

Sooooo I have until next Feb to get a proper Fantasy army up and running that is a) competitive and b) done entirely by me without outside help.

I have a pile sitting in boxes. I really wanted to do skaven but everyone and their dog will be doing that (and I just got an army of theem) and I don't think I have the time to do that many models. I also really wanted to get stuck into a pile of minis I found in a box at my parent's house last Christmas... Nippon.

(these are ALL GW models) I have roughly 45 samurai with swords, 18 samurai with swords in heavy armour, 16 of so heavily armoured samurai with pole arms, 2 ninja, 1 converted priest/ mage, a pile of character models (8 or so), a nipponese rocket with crew, 12 armoured samurai with long bows, and some other stuff...

Some of these models can be seen on this page here...


There are lots not shown there and I do not have many shown on that page but that shows some of the models for reference. The bases are stamped and labeled GW on all models so that answers the company question.

Roughly 80% or more of the army is pre-slotta bases which is AWESOME fun. Need to figure how to mount these later.

In the coming months I plan to track my progress both as a painter of the army and as a general. I am also breaking tradition by playtesting the heck out of something before taking it to a tourney. While I might have trouble being exciting posting wise for the next month or so because I will be writing reports (I teach) December on should be epic.

Why Samurai? I will get to that later...

Why GW only models (or trying to anyway)? Because I am a hopeless fanboy.

Now the important question... What army list to use...

Looking at the model list I narrowed it down a bit. Empire was one of the first picks but I don't have enough models let alone hand gunners and lots of nights... I would also not have anything to use the ninja as... I want ninjas...

Next... High Elves... Bowmen... Check... Elite units of swordsmen... Check... Same toughness and strength as humans... check... ASF... kinda matches the whole samurai bad ass thing... kinda check... Dragon riders... check... I could convert a small unit of cav or try sculpting them by hand... maybe... Hmmmm... still no ninja...

Last... Dark Elves... On the downside lots of people don;t like playing them BUT basic warriors with hand weapons... Yup... Pole arms and heavy armor (Black guard)... Ok... swordsmen in hvy armor (executioners)... Yup... yakuza as shades... rocket teams as bolt throwers... yup... Funky cav (cold ones) I can convert into temple dogs... Heck yeah! Assassins... CHECK!!!

Hmmm.... bows instead of crossbows... might have to convert those... Need to get pole arms to add to basic soldiers... doable...

I am thinking Dark elves are the way to go... I do want to avoid the usual suspects in the list though... Hydras are AWESOME in the game where one ate my army BUT I don't think they fit my theme... Also, Hated playing against the pendant... So I probably won't use one...

What it comes down to is this:

I WANT TO MAKE AN ARMY THAT FITS MY THEME (and models) THAT 1) CAN WIN A GAME 2) IS NOT JUST ANOTHER DARK ELF LIST... 3) is as much fun to play with as it is against... If that makes sense...

Hope you stay tuned and enjoy...


Here are the models that I have:

Thursday, October 28, 2010

BLOODY RATS!!! (or my new Skaven army)

So hot on the heels of my most recent fantasy tourney successes I thought I would try to play with something that would not warrant a massive comp crotch hit. Yes I have been playing hard lists but I have been playing in no comp tournies. That trend will not last and I look forward to properly comped 8th ed events. Anyway with balance in mind I got this awesome army in the mail the other night. BLOODY RATS!!!

The Characters (There is also a plague priest on a furnace... more picts coming)

Two units of slaves... Here is a picture of one of them...

Now you will obviously see that the army is blood spattered in gore. This is achieved through the use of Tamiya Clear Red paint. It is mixed with Babdab Black to varying degrees before being carefully sprayed on using various methods. As I add to the army I will show how this is done.

Two units of clan rats:

Giant Rats:

Now I do not plan on using rats in my army so I am going to use the rats and handlers as fillers to mix in with the existing slaves and can rats...

Weapon Teams: (Warp Fire Thrower and Doom Flayer)

Furnace and Plague Monks:

Ninja Rats:

Doom Wheel:

Warp Lightning Cannon:

Here is a shot of what they look like before the final highlight and blood:

Yeah the whole army could probably use some extreme highlighting to really "Pop" but I really like the way it looks as is...
I am sure I will get stuck into it soon to tighten it up a bit. Until next time sports fans!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Orktoberfest Recap!

Why "Die another Day?" I thought I was going to get done this weekend in Brissie... This was not to be the case.

I am just now becoming conscious again after my weekend in Brissie playing 8th ed at Orktoberfest. Orktoberfest was using very strange rules. Lots of 7th ed tide overs. If you were running at the end of the game you were counted as destroyed, hills were counted as being unlimited hight (limiting TLOS), max 12 power dice a turn period, etc... Day one had a truncated scoring system too which was strange. The most you could win on day one was 15 points. Conversely the least you could score if you lose was 5. Narrowed the field so that day two was tight and competitive. The tourney mainly ignored missions which I thought was rather silly. All in all I probably would not have gone had I know how much they were monkeying with the game in the players pack. On the whole though I was really happy and I am very glad I did go (I just hope that next year they will leave the game alone!).

Thursday night before the event I was one of the chaperones for our lower school sleep over. I had two kids vomit, one kid pee in a corner, a crier, a roller in his sleep with a swishing sounding sleeping bag and a snorer. All in all no sleep. I then taught the next day and while my fellow staff when home to crash I caught a plane and flew across Australia to play war dollies. Was really tired all weekend. Never again...

Game 1: Pete Dunn: Skaven. Pete is a veteran player who I last faced years ago at Liber Animus. He is the Number one ranked NZ player and happens to be the guy I was staying with up there. When I last played Pete I lost badly and had to grow my hair for 6 weeks. YUCK! No bet this time. He had a VERY hard list with 2 WLC, an abomination and a furnace. I got slapped around in this game. Pete is a really good player and I hadn't play tested my army at all. Learned alot about 8th ed and I with my 5 points I was ready for round 2.

Game 2 and 3: High elves and Dark Elves... Game 2 was against a high elves list with no bolt throwers, a lvl 2 mage, and lots of seaguard. The fiends and the Thirster got stuck in and the rest of the army hammered down the middle. Bloodletters made short work of just about everything they touched. I did loose one combat against two swordmasters and a noble on a griffon. Despite the reroll the unit whiffed its leadership badly and popped. OUCH! By turn 5 he was finished though and I took 15 points to game three.

Game 3: Dark Elves: No hydra, no bolt throwers... Weird... Lots of magic, some crossbows, a cauldron and lots of elite units (witch elves, black guard, etc). Bloodthirster go stuck in with a first turn charge against some corsairs. It axed that unit and ran them down when they fled. It then turned around while the rest of the army hit the front lines. I generally did pretty well. The flamers got into a shooting match against lots of crossbowmen and over three turns I wiped them out. Ended with another 15 win.

Dinner, sleep... Coffee... Breakfast...

Game 4: Played another vet player with a Slann and skink list. Massively annoying to play. Chris was great fun and I really enjoyed him but his army was like getting hit in the face a hundred times by little fists every turn. It was fine in the beginning but boy was it annoying by the end. I thought I had his Slann in turn 5 but the silly bugger was able to just get out of my charge arc. I couldn't kill enough little crap for points as he ran from almost every combat. In the end he won 12 to 8. I was raging after that and my next opponent was to feel the wrath.

Game 5: High Elves. Little bit of everything. I smashed one side of his army and ate through the other side. Could not get through his swordmasters and mage though. I eventually got them into combat with my horrors who I buffed to be +2 toughness or toughness +4 for the last few rounds and held them up. The game was about to end with a major victory to me when he hit my thirster with a comet of cassandora and took off a bunch of wounds (I forgot my ward bonus for Magic resistance). He then finished him off with a lucky bolt thrower shot. My victory dropped to 12 points. Hey, I will take it!

Game 6: Warriors of Chaos. My opponent had a shrine, two big blocks of warriors, a big block of knights, and a daemon prince. Turn 1 he got too close to my thirster with his knights. The Thirster got close up and personal and over a few turns ate the knights. Meanwhile one unit of his warriors got dual charged by my horrors and a blood letter block. I won that combat and swept into his DP. The horrors took him down surprisingly and the rest of the game was just wiping things up. 20 points to me.

I packed up and ran for the airport only to have my flight delayed. Missed the awards ceremony but found out later that I came 7th. Not to shabby. I am very proud of this as I was aiming for dead middle of the pack.

With my placing I almost became eligible for the Victorian Masters event. I was ranked higher than number 10 but then I learned that not all his results had not been put in. As number 10 is Chris Cousins who helped me to get the army together in the first place... What can I say... I couldn't argue with his being placed above me. He helped me get where I am now. No worries. As I am now number 11, I hope someone drops out and I get a shot this weekend...

Have a new army to use to... Coming soon... Pictures of my BLOODY RATS!!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Thirster Continues (Again)

Work on the Blood Thirster continues...

He needs more work on his axe and skin...

Not sure if I should go lighter or darker on the dreads... ideas?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Almost FInished Daemon Army...

Well with a week to go here is my funky DOC army. The Thirster needs more help but you get the idea...

The Horrors:

The Letters:

The Fiends:

The Flamers:

The Thirster:

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My Orktoberfest DOC List

Well we are less that two weeks away from Orktoberfest. A large 40k/ Fantasy tournament in Brisbane Australia. I will be heading up from Melbourne to play this year for the first time and I am very excited.

It is a no comp tournament (I think because it is the new edition) and as such my poor tomb kings were just not going to cut the mustard. Expecting the worst I brought the best I have. Daemons of Chaos. I took my very successful 1250 list and beefed it up a bit for this event.

First of all I grew the horrors into a solid block of 19 with command and switched the Blue Scribes for a level two herald with lore of life. I have yet to try this combo but life gives a nice balance of buffs and offense that I think will really compliment my unit choices.

I added two more flamers making the unit 6. These guys are really hit or miss for me. I hope that by adding two they really do their job.

Last of all I added the big point sink himself. A Blood Thirster with rage and armour. I would have loved to give him more but with a 2000 point limit... That is all I could get under the percentages... Anyway... Here is my list... Yes it is harsh but I am bringing a gun to a gun fight...

Baal Hemiamortis
Blood Thirster of Khorne, Immortal Fury, Armour of Khorne

T'Chang The Mysterious
Herald of Tzeentch, Master of Sorcery (Lore of life)

Barbarik… The Bezerker
Khorne Herald

Ballick The Bloody
Khorne Herald, Armour of Khorne, Bsb

The Bloody Skulls
19 Bloodletters, Full Command, Icon of Endless War

Brozen Death
19 Bloodletters, Full Command

Secrets That Kill
19 Horrors of Tzeentch, Champ and Icon Bearer, Icon of Sorcery

The Firestarters
6 Flamers of Tzeentch

Thing Number 1

Thing Number 1

Total: 1998

Lords: 490 Points (24.5%) Heroes: 380 Points (19%)
Core: 808 Points (40%) Rare: 320 Points (16%)

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Thirster Continues (Plus my letters)

Work on my Blood Thirster continues...

Most of my ideas of what a thirster should look like is based on my old fav picture of the beastie by Mark Gibbons...

I have added random strands of dreads to give him the appearance that looks more dreads and less british lawyer...

Once again more chaos dwarf beard texture for the dreads...

Now... The bloodletters, I use the last three generations of bloodletters mixed together for variation in poses and models and I think they look great all mixed together. Now what they don't do is fully mix in with the rest of the army. As a good chunk of the army is completely sculpted by me... Well the letters don;t match... Soooo I am mixing in a 4th kind of letter... Mini floating pacman heads in blood red... They tie in with the rest of the floating balls and the blood red colour will match the rest of the letters in the unit.

Anyway... Here are the green stuffed heads... There are more than this but this gives you the idea. I especially like Elvis to the left...

Next post... My list...

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Blood Thirster WIP Continued

Well Gang I am back... I spent three sessions green stuffing the dreadlocks on my thirster... Now before you look... He isn't done...

I need to fix the middle of his head... I put in his bangs, the dreads going down the sides of the front of his shoulders... between his shoulders and his wings... and down his back... Where they all meet... Not quite done..

My least favorite part so far is the bit that goes down his back... Too flat. I will be adding random strands to add depth and a further sense of movement.

The dreads are fat and chunky. I tried to emulate the texture of chaos dwarf beards... If that makes sense...

Any suggestions would also be welcome...

Friday, October 8, 2010

WIP Blood Thirster

Just a few shots of my WIP Blood Thirster

I took tow BT models and cut them up into bitz. By doing this I was not only able to get a Thirster with two axes but I was also able to get one that looks like he is sort of running.

I used the large balrog wings to give him a more sinister wingspan and outline.

Because the model was leaning forward a bit I had to raise his chin and in the process I shaved his mane. I am going to completely resculpt his dreads next and fill all of his little gaps. (especially his rear end)

Back to work

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Inspiration or "Copy Catting?"

Ok so I want on my usual peruse of Ebay today just to see what is moving and shaking in the world of wardollies and to my surprise I found a 2nd Floating Eyeball, Tzeentch Daemon army!

For those aware I did that years ago for the last Liber Animus tournament here in Melbourne. I posted it on Warseer a awhile back at I was bombarded with questions concerning how and why I did it. A gentleman on there asked if he could do something similar. I didn’t have a problem with it and he did almost a carbon copy of my army (that looks better to be fair).. . Good on him. Now I find there is another one…

This is actually pretty cool that people have identified with the idea so much that they are replicating my idea with their own spin. The eyeballs in the above army are much larger than mine and they went for the lidless eyes that I generally stayed away from (flamers and LOC aside).

My problem starts when as I was playing on the weekend a kid came up to me at a tournament and told me that I was copying a guy he had seen online. At first I thought that he was referring to my army. Then I thought it might be the warseer guy but now I think he was referring to the Ibis (ebay) guys. Now Ibis miniatures is a painting company that churns out miniatures at a frantic pace. Will my Eyeballs become one of their regular items?

I guess that means that people will stop complaining that they don’t know what is what in my armies…. ☺ (I will have to post my blood letters as mini pacman heads soon but I am holding a few on my ideas from the blog til they show up at Orktoberfest in two weeks).

I don’t think my hobby has been terribly inspirational in the past. I guess I am just getting used to the idea.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Conflict Finals

As discussed earlier, Conflict in Victoria this year (Fantasy Battles that is) was ruled, as it is a new edition of the game, to be open for everyone (not just beginners). Conflict was run as a two heat event with three initial days of playing to get the top ten players from each heat… If that makes sense.

The top thirty players converged on Camberwell’s Battle Bunker this last Sunday to battle it out for the top spot. Players were required to bring the same armies that they qualified with meaning I was back with my daemons. As mentioned before special characters were allowed and comp was a joke so many of the armies in the top 30 had elements of real filth for 1250points.

Game 1: High Elves: Round 1 I got paired with the High Elf player that came 2nd to me in my qualifying heat. Hamish had some sword masters, white lions, and Reavers. He also had a bolt thrower and a large unit of spearmen. I moved into place in the first couple of turns and took some painful shots from magic and the bolt thrower until I was able to get my General’s unit of bloodletters and a fiend (side charged) into his white lions true I took some damaged from ASF great weapons but I wiped him out in return. I did something similar to the sword masters (and his mage) and the Blue scribes charged and wiped out his bolt thrower. In the end I charged the spears from three directions at once and wiped him out. I did make a few mistakes (like challenging his HE hero with a great weapon with my herald. I was killed before I had the chance to strike.) OUCH! Major victory to me.

Game 2: High Elves. Rion had a unit of 20 Seaguard, 10 swordmasters, 10 bowmen, 6 shades led by the uber shade special character, a mage and two bolt throwers. He deployed his army (as this was the diagonal deployment mission) in his quarter so to speak about 8 inches on from the center line across from a stream. In his first turn we discovered that this stream cast a random lore of life spell on you when you stood in it. Hmmm… Anyway by the end of turn two I had charged a bolt thrower with a fiend and was down to 7 bloodletters total. I could not dispel anything in this game and the curse of arrow attraction was kicking my ass. At least I still had 2 units. Kinda… I gathered my wits about me, prayed , and charged into the sea guard with 6 letters and a herald while 1 letter champion and the other herald hit the bowmen. We rolled for spells and one of my units gained always strikes first and the other became int 10 and WS 10. Both denying him ASF rerolls. He wiffed his attacked and my boys walked through both units with extreme prejudice. Meanwhile with my letters out of the way, my flamers turned about face and shot the very annoying shadow warriors off the board with some flickering fire support from the horrors. Fiends ate the other bolt thrower. The stream ate his mage and one of my fiends (terrain is brutal) leaving his swordmasters which were forced to start off the board and came on too far to get into the action. They were close enough to get pasted and eventually wiped out from Horror/flamer attacks. Tabled another opponent for another major victory.

I’ll admit at this point nerves were getting to me and with my morning caffeine long gone and still recovering from Collingwood’s victory the night before. I rocked up to my last game and found Nathan Parker (former captain of the game club that used to constantly challenge my club when it existed).

Game 3: Nathan was playing beasts and we were playing the Banner mission. He had a big unit of bestigor, a unit of minotaurs, a large unit of gors, two units of hounds, two chariots, and something else. We lined up across from each other and I discovered that I had an altar of Khaine on my side of the board. I duly deployed as many units next to it as possible. Turn 1 he comes towards me. I discover my letters have to try and charge. They make the 17 inch charge range and close with his generals unit. I smash a lot of bestigor. He kills a few letters but I win by 2 I think. Even with a reroll he fails his leadership test and runs… 2 inches… I catch and kill him to win the game… We keep playing but eventually I table him for a major victory (I guess I won anyway). Nathan as always was a great opponent as was my other opponents on Sunday.

As I had pulled another perfect score on sports, comp, battle, and painting… I came 1st. No one was more surprised than me. I had a great time and I think my feelings were shared my most of the players there. Here is hoping that GW Camberwell will run more “heat” events in the future.

Until next time…

Friday, October 1, 2010

Missions in Warhammer (A must read guest poster)

Pete Dunn is a veteran player of many years whose list of accomplishments and trophy rack is hard to compete with. He recently restarted his hobby blog Fields of Blood in which he discusses Warhammer in NZ and abroad. I was going to write a blog post addressing missions in 8th ed but Pete beat me to it and did a much better job than I could. Here is where his post came from originally and here is what Pete had to say...

Over the past month one of the hot topics on Warhammer forums has been the so-called "Rage-Quitting" by veteran players. If you believe the posts this is in part because the game now requires less sophisticated tactics, is prone to big spell-itis and has generally been "dumbed down".

Now I don't prescribe to those theories (with the exception that a big spell can hurt you and completely disrupt your battleplan) as I think the game has moved on, evolved, what-have-you.

At Pilgrimage in August, three scenarios were played - Battleline, Meeting Engagement and Battle for the Pass. Post-event you should have heard the gnashing of teeth as various people catalogued how the scenarios neutered their armis. For goodness sake people read the Players Pack. You knew where playing them. Construct your army to deal with them!

Which brings me to the point of this post - The Scenarios.

I was always a nay-sayer re scenarios in 7th Edition. However in 8th Edition I believe that GW have hit a winner. The scenarios are varied and if you play all six of them, internally balanced. What sort of army can win Battleline? An extreme army - be it in terms of magic, points denial or hitting power. What type of army will dominate tournaments where the full gambit of scenarios are played - a balanced army.

Only want ghouls as your Core Infantry? Good luck for "Blood and Glory". Only want to take big blocks in Battleline? Good luck when you meet a bigger dog (read deathstar) and can't deal with it - I'll bet then you wished you had spent 100 points on three cheap throwaway units rather than the "uber-mega-combo of doom" sword on your Lord. Playing "Watchtower" - well you better have something in your list that can claim the tower (20 or less core infantry) or shift the incumbents. Put 1000 points in your Deathstar? Hope you don't roll a "1" in "Meeting Engagement" or it gets separated from your main force in "Dawn Attack".

The scenarios provide a balance that acts as a form of comp over the course of a tournament. Yes you might compete well in "Battleline" but let's see you across the full gambit.

This of course is predicated on the fact that you are playing the scenarios. Already I have seen events where scenarios like "Watchtower" or "Blood & Glory" have their objective reduced to 400-500VPs. This isn't playing scenarios (nor do I believe is it giving the game a fair chance). This is playing "Battleline - with a Twist of Lemon". In a lot of cases I think this is the influence of compromise to appease the Rage-Quitters. These guys don't want to give up their 7th Ed paradigm.

At Skitterleap III this weekend, the scenarios are......the scenarios. If you don't control the Watchtower you don't win the game. If your Fortitude level is breached you don't win the game. Yes there is an opportunity to score points/lose points but the scenario is sacrosanct.

I see the ability to adapt, evolve, amend your battleplan and list as the key in 8th Ed.

The game has moved on from the ability to judge distances and know with near absolute certainty the outcome of particular combat. It is now about risk management, risk mitigation, having a balanced army to cover various scenarios and contingencies.......and especially having a Plan B when shit happens.

To mix historical references - "It's a Brave New World out there, evolve or die".