Thursday, January 22, 2015

Preparing for the worst with Dad' Army…

o/

With the gears slowly grinding forth on the local Bolt Action front, I've already had to give my fledgling Quar/Dad's Army concept a rethink. Naive fool that I am, I was hoping on Bolt Action being a Beer and Pretzels'  Weird War II game. Unsurprisingly though, the others interested in the game are active 40k players and 40k's ROFLSTOMP the other guy mind-set has naturally been ported over to Bolt Action. 

As such the local WWII military-industrial/inferiority complex is in full swing with most everyone planning to field all elite/veteran infantry along with the biggest and baddest tanks! In the face of that, my inexperienced troops, backed up by light weapons and a Matilda Mk I looked utterly pointless.

…sigh…

Having to switch to something 'more competitive' (grumble, grumble…) yet still sticking with the Dad's Army list allocations, I decided all of my units will be 'regular' quality rather than 'inexperienced', with only a few exceptions. The first of which being the Home Guard. I don't have any of Zombiesmith's Quar partisan minis to use as Home Guard yet, but when I do, well…they have to be inexperienced. No worries there as that just strikes me as a 'fluffy' anyways.

I was pleased to find that I had more of these guys than I thought!
Likewise the other exception will be the addition of my Commando section. Commandos don't have the option to be anything but veteran, so that settles that I guess. With the infantry tweaks out of the way, I'll next move onto the heavy (…snicker…) armor!

Yes, yes...MUCH better!
As I mentioned in my last post about it, I didn't care for the gun barrel as it was an oversized 40k bit. Additionally, the MASSIVE headlight started to annoy me as well. It struck me as the size of a searchlight, such as would be used for spotting enemy bombers on a nighttime raid. That and its placement between the tracks meant the first sizable rock or tree stump to pass between the treads would render it inoperable anyways.

So first up, I popped that off (at which point it flew halfway across the living room!), and using bitz and plasti-card, built out a sloped front glacis which lines up almost perfectly with the front of the hull-turret. For a bit of detail, I added a hatch as well, to access the transmission area. Considering that the engine is up in the hull-turret, I would imagine that the transmission would be a mechanic's nightmare of gears and widgets! For replacement headlights, I found a spare set from an apparently defunct SM Rhino.

For the important part: the gun, I replaced the old bit with a cannon from either an old Stuart light tank or Greyhound armored car, both of which had been victims of 40k's old VDR rules. To go with that, I added a co-axial MMG from a Quar armored car that I decided not to build when I realized how badly cast it was (big internal air bubbles…yikes! I should have given it a better look when I bought it a year or two back).

Initially I was going to use the tank (with its new weaponry) as a Light Tank Mk VI C, but after some research via the BA rulebook (and Wikipedia), I decided instead on the Vickers 6-ton light tank type B (the single turreted version with the 47mm cannon). Hence forth known as the: Quar 6-ton light tank.  Whilst more far fragile than a Matilda Mk I, it doesn't move like molasses on a cold day, and is armed with a MMG and (most importantly) a light anti-tank gun!

Now, the odds of that light anti-tank gun punching a hole in my opponent's tanks aren't the greatest, but at least it has a decent chance of doing so. True, the super heavy (an in-game classification) tanks are still invulnerable to it, but they cost as much as my whole army so I'm not concerned with that. If anyone wants to field one of those, then they'll have to play against someone else's army.

So as you can see, my Quar/Dad's Army is begrudgingly pulling out their brass knuckles for the upcoming fight. However whether the above will be enough for them to hold their own or not remains to be seen…



Monday, January 19, 2015

Spaceships exploding everywhere!

o/

Yes this weekend we played what's becoming the usual epic game of X-Wing. However this go round was my turn at total dice failure where I could evade NOTHING! Oh well, Voril has had that twice now, and Wolfy as well, Kushial you're next! lol.

Instead of a bat rep, I've got pics of another favorite of mine: EVE Online. I've been playing EVE for years now and am kinda bored with it to be honest. Nonetheless there are occasional highlights. For example, I have one of my characters in the Red Vs. Blue alliance. RvB is easily the 'friendliest' PVP you'll find in EVE, and this past Saturday they hosted a Destroyer Free For All (FFA) as a send off for the retiring CEO of Blue Republic.

The set up was destroyers only (aside from 2 Battleships fielded by alliance execs, from which prizes were given for top damage dealers and to whomever got the final killing blow), the dessies were fully fitted and provided by RvB for free in allotments of 5. Each ship was to be insured for the maximum amount which netted the user a profit of 700k-1mil isk (the in-game currency) per lost ship (EVE insurance fraud for the win!). It was a blast and I played for close to 4 hours, losing 21 dessies (the first was my own which I flew directly to the event, the rest were RvB supplied) and I 'whored' myself onto 69 kill mails.

Huzzah!

'Whoring onto KM's' is the fine  EVE tradition of not linking your weapons for maximum damage, but instead shooting at everything in range. In many cases, the amount of damage inflicted is minimal to negligible, who cares? Your character was on the killmail which is all that matters! At certain points I was in scattered pockets of combat and I grouped my shots getting top damage dealer and/or killing blow on several of my fleet-mates. All in all it was a hellova good time!

Here are some screenshot highlights:

In the center is a Raven class battleship moments from detonation!
This is a Dominix battleship experiencing it's own death by a thousand paper cuts...
One of my Dessies, on the verge of destruction!
Green icons are in corp, purple in fleet, and off to the left you can see Jita 4.4, the busiest space station in all of EVE. On the average day, there are about 1100-1200 players in system at any given time, RvB had the numbers up to 2100+ at one point meaning the lag was atrocious! CCP had blocked the gates into the system periodically due to the strain on the server, meaning it took me a few minutes of clicking 'jump'  just to get in system while stuck in the traffic jam at a neighboring system's jump gate...
Another of my ships moments before its demise!
Eventually I had to log off as the lag had gotten so bad I was down to 1-2 FPS, rendering the game unplayable. That and it was dinner time!



Thursday, January 15, 2015

Lambda Shuttle repaint and a last minute U-turn on my part...

Okay, time for a quick change from where this post was originally heading (more on that below, and as only Voril and Wolfy had knowledge of it, likely they'll be the only ones disappointed). Instead I offer all of you the finished Lambda Shuttle repaint:

Both Wolfy and I were pleased with my rendition of engine glow. Its kinda ironic though given just how slow the ship itself is...
So: ta da! Another (minor) project done!

 When first writing this post, I was all set for another bout of nerd rage from atop the ol' soap box, but it occurred to me that only I have a problem with everyone else (i.e.: it seems every game is approached with a kick the others guy's teeth in mentality rather than something that would be fun to play against. Yes, primarily in 40k, though Bolt Action looks to be following quickly even though our group hasn't even played it yet!), but no one else seems to have that problem. Guess that means I've graduated to 'that guy' status. Achievement unlocked!

Yay.

So I deleted my long-winded rant about everything degenerating into (quoting myself here) a pissing contest between grown men playing with their fucking toys! Besides, everyone locally has already heard it from me before (to no avail). I do however wonder if I've just out-grown gaming (as often it just isn't much fun anymore aside from painting minis) and I'm left pondering: just what the hell do I do now? Were it not for the recent additions of X-Wing, and some minor forays into Infinity and Bolt Action, this blog would probably be dead already when you consider its 40k content. Indeed, I've even discarded my State of my 40k series as for the most part, that state is simply: awaiting their turn on ebay.

Monday, January 12, 2015

(X-Wing) Lambda Shuttle WIP Repaint

o/

Sorry, no pics of this weekend's reenactment of the evacuation of Hoth. I brought my camera, but the day before the battery was almost dead so I put it on the charger and....yeah, it was still there when I was at the FLGS. So much for that idea. :-/

Anyways, our (WIP-repainted) Lambda Shuttle made it's battlefield debut in it's new colors. It drew tons of compliments which is always a good thing! It also laid down some good long ranged fire support though I'm starting to think the heavy laser cannon isn't worth 5 points for just an extra shot at ranges 2 & 3 (with no option for crits.).

Unfortunately I'm going to have to glue the wings in the down position, because as you can see they keep scraping the new paint off on the sides.

Sadly, its only notable action was getting pancaked by Kushial's Rebel Transport! Though it did take out an extra shield with it's anti-pursuit laser! So yay, for small victories...lol.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Preparations for Friday night's Epic game of X-Wing

o/

This coming Friday the gang is going to have an Epic X-wing game (a battle report will hopefully follow). Organizing gamers in advance is like herding cats, so I made the suggestion of each player arriving with multiple lists in varying point sizes (i.e.: 100 & 150) and we'll figure out who is doing what when we all see who actually shows up.

Not wanting our newest A-Wing fighter to look out of place or have it get lost in the horde, I painted it to match the rest of our 'Purple Wing'.


Meanwhile her Lambda shuttle is currently primed black (and thus not too photogenic right now), so it may be kinda ugly for the game if it is used. Not quite sure what we'll do with it in the long run, but we'll figure something out...

Monday, January 5, 2015

There's finally some movement on the Bolt Action front...

o/

Well, its taken a few years, but it sounds like Bolt Action is finally getting going around here. Rob has 'narrowed it down to 3 armies' (down from 5) meaning by the end of the decade he ought to be close to picking a faction. Screech has built a Tamiya 1/48th scale wirbelwind and also assembled about a squad or so...I think. Neverness has a Sherman Firefly in progress, Kushial has mentioned interest (in his latest post as it turns out!), and there are two guys at the FLGS (one a somewhat recent addition, the other returning after a considerable absence) who have 1k armies already built and ready to go! My 500 points of Quar (British) are ready to go once I reread the rules again. Aside from myself, two others in our group are also pondering Weird War II with non-human armies, so all-in-all, it looks good!

With that in mind, I finally finished building my Quar tank today. Originally I intended to use it as a Firefly, but instead decided on an early war (1940-Fall of France/BEF) army. As such, I yanked out the Firefly barrel with the intent to use it as a Matilda Mk I only to find that I lacked any sort of suitable HMG for it. Rummaging thru the bitz box, I found a cool looking (if over-sized) bit to use.

Do all miniature companies make their tank hatches too small? Seriously, how are these chubby little guys supposed to crawl in there? Then there's the issue of the curiously narrow hull-turret...
The Quar Matilda Mk I. Edit: The more I look at that gun barrel, the less I like it, so expect that to be changed in a future post.
Apparently the Quar aren't nocturnal (unlike Ant Eaters/Aardvarks) resulting for the need of this huge headlight!
Land mines could be a serious problem considering this engine/fuel tank bit from Curious Constructs. Amusingly, its the most detailed bit of this conversion, even though when the turret is on, it is largely hidden from view.
In the event that Bolt Action gets going steadily and I have some funds to expand my force, I would like to get some of Zombiesmith's wonderfully characterful Partisan miniatures to use as a Home Guard Section for a 'Dad's Army' force. However those plans will be some ways off if ever coming to fruit...

Monday, December 29, 2014

30k: Centurion and Techmarine

o/

Whew, its been a wild week! I had the whole week off, but there was little hobby time as we had family in from out of state, and of course Christmas day which included me surprising just about everyone when I popped the question to Wolfy (she said 'yes')! So needless to say, it was a really good week for me!

Just prior to Christmas, I put in a bid on ebay for the crew of a Forgeworld Rapier Laser Destroyer (without the Rapier itself or shoulder pads for the crew). I didn't have the $$$ for it, but they were a good deal, so I placed a minimum bid, knowing I'd lose but wouldn't kick myself for not trying. Naturally, I won the auction. Yay, one more charge for the already screaming credit card. Oh well, Friday and Saturday were kinda quiet and so I put the two together.

First up, my Centurion:

I'll probably paint that helmet on his base in EC colors as well, leaving one to wonder if it belonged to friend or foe...
One thing the Emperor's Children were known for was trophy taking. If they defeated a particularly worthy foe, they would take a weapon from their victim as both a trophy, and for use on future battlefields. As you can see, my Centurion has done just that.

Its not really visible, but the arm holding that blade is actually a bionic arm. So it leaves you to wonder if his organic arm was separated from his body by the very blade that the bionic replacement now wields...

I'll count it as a Charnabal Sabre which is a CCW that confers +1 initiative and is rending.  Beyond the exotic blade, he's a bit of a no-frills type of officer who is outfitted with a bolter, bolt pistol, and grenades. I intend to field him as just a standard Centurion, not one of the optional Consuls.

The other Rapier crew-marine (the one who is normally mounted on the Rapier itself) has been converted to a Techmarine with Conversion Beamer:

Armed to the teeth and looking for a fight!
This guy is something of a blasphemy I guess (no doubt why he was slated for termination by his traitorous brethren) as he's an amalgamation of actual Forgeworld and Chinese knock-off resin parts! I had gotten the Astral Claws Techmarine via China but didn't care for some defects in the casting of his torso (though to be honest, it was no worse than some of the actual FW purchases I've made). As such, it was never painted. With the demise of my Astral Claws, I omitted the offending parts and added the rest to the 30k gunner's body.

He looks kinda comical with such an enormous backpack, no doubt his servo-automata (servitors with bolters) help to keep him upright when on the move. Of course the conversion beamer gives my fledgling force some much needed heavy firepower which will also make this guy target priority #1! Thus the servo-automata will also serve as a few ablative wounds to keep him alive a little longer as well!

So, all I need now are some squads in the 'Troops' category (my recon marines sadly are a support squad, so can't be used for compulsory choices). Currently finances don't permit that but...I still only have two of my 30k marines painted so that's alright I guess as there's plenty to do in the interim.

Note: for anyone running short of Mk III shoulder pads, some of the CSM shoulder pads work just as well!
With New Years day falling on a Thursday, I'm not sure if I'll have another post this week or not. So in the event that I don't I'd like to wish all of you a happy New Year to come!!!