Monday, July 15, 2019

The (Eldar) Guardians of the Galaxy


Another recent purchase has arrived:

Taste the rainbow bitches!

Following our recent game in which I borrowed about 1/2 of my army from Neverness, I decided to bolster my Corsairs with some substantial (and dirt cheap) reinforcements! Clocking in at a mere $26, I got 33 obsolete Guardians. 

I'll add the weapon and shield after painting. This will be a difficult enough job as is.

Well, okay...the 6 with the metal shuriken catapults are still viable with the current Craftworlds codex. They've been primed in a bone color, and will be my 'test squad' for these new fangled GW contrast paints (whenever I get around to buying some). All they'll need is an easy-build box of Guardians  and the above weapons platform to flesh out the squad. 

Two lasgun Guardians had broken guns and were guinea pigs for conversionability. How difficult was that? Not very. In the top photo one can be seen with Dark Eldar arms and a splinter rifle. Those will likely get replaced (yet again), as will the vast majority of the lasguns (or rather lasblasters) with shard Carbines. 

Lasblasters are great and all, and suck it IG players, because that blob of 25 above, armed as they currently are will sling out 100 (assault) lasblaster shots (which strength and range wise are no different than lasguns) a turn.

HOWEVER...lasblasters are 7 points a piece. Meaning those same grunts clock in at a total of 16 points a piece as equipped!! By contrast the vastly more capable Craftworld Swooping Hawks clock in a 13 a piece. Worse yet, I have another 3 with lasblasters already as well. 

Just look up your friendly neighborhood Black Dagger Games on ebay...

So instead, for approximately 200 points less, I can swap out those lasblasters for shard carbines which are almost as good (6" less range and only 75 shots per turn), and clock in at 0 points. Conveniently, I found a bunch of 'em for $6 on ebay! I also got 3 dark eldar hell-glaives (I think?) which will serve as Corsair spar-glaives (Chainswords essentially, granting +1 CC attack and also 0 points). 

They ought to work as Storm Guardians as well.

So...I'll have a good bit of work to do on these guys before it comes time for a cohesive repaint. Luckily they're table top ready (if a bit expensive) as-is. That said, I've gotten the initial batch converted and I'm pleased with 'em so far:

I'm thinking that I'll need to scrounge up some more of those glaives, though I like the look of carbines as well!

Thursday, July 11, 2019

I gotta baby Squiggoth!


Neverness, paging Neverness...(again)....

Anyone who reads the Neverness Hobby Chronicle has probably noticed at one point or another that in the comments, I periodically can't help but cajole/badger Neverness into painting his gargantuan squiggoth. In person, on Facebook, (on this blog), etc., this also happens as well.  

All to no avail I'm afraid, sigh...

He (quote) has no place to work on and or display it in a way that would do it proper justice. Thus, it languishes in storage for going on close to a decade or maybe more now. I've never bought this beastie myself for much the same reasons as to why he won't build it. Well that and then of course there's that hefty price tag attached to it...

However, the badgering of Neverness is only going to get worse I'm afraid as later today, this beastie will be arriving in the mail and to be honest, I can't wait!

Okay, so its only a baby squiggoth, but its the only squiggoth we'll be seeing here locally for the foreseeable future!

I've wanted this mini for a few years now. However, when I first spotted it I (1) was mad at GW and their lousy atrocious Ork codex, which put the army on the back burner and (2) it was a bit pricey, and it would be coming from England (pre-Brexit) meaning the exchange rates were anything but favorable. 

My only prior experience with Hysterical Games (the model's manufacturer) was...not so good. Customer service was first rate, but the castings, not-so-much. That and the replacements weren't much better, which was another deterrent. 

However the Gnomes were tiny little things compared to this, and what few reviews I could find at the time (maybe one actually, but I can't find the link again), folks who had this loved it! However I kinda forgot about it, and then Hysterical Games had cashflow issues, and then they simply went out of business. Sad face. I wouldn't ever be getting my baby squiggoth after all it seemed...

They've since changed their name to Wessex Games and do still sell PanzerfĂ€uste, although all of the old CAD sculpted minis are gone, and their minis lines now are all hand-sculpted (and to me a bit of a let down comparatively speaking). 

As for my baby squiggoth, well...I'm not sure if Noble Knight Games bought all of Hysterical Games' remaining stock or rather just placed a large order prior to their demise, but they have quite a few of the CAD designed minis, and if you want one of these then they still have one left in stock (I snagged the other one before I missed my chance to ever have it!) otherwise good luck finding it elsewhere.

I plan on using this in lieu of a deff dread (especially as I've never liked any of the ork dread minis throughout their entire history) and as I am wont to do, I remade the deff dread datasheet to fit this model. 

I'll replace the placeholder pic at the top after I paint my model up.

So, Neverness we can now look forward to seeing a squiggoth in our games finally! I'm sure you're thrilled...right? 

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Eldar Corsair Void Dreamer for 8th Ed.


So...I'm a pretty big fan of Foreworld's Eldar Corsairs, and I say that despite have next to none of them (and out of my small collection, none of them are actual Forgeworld minis). Corsairs were the Swiss army knives of the Eldar before they were effectively liquidated by Forgeworld when 8th ed was released. 

Such an awesome image and yet I have no idea who created it. 

Sure they have a handful of datasheets, but GW's sudden 'if we don't already make a model for it, then there will be no datasheet for it' mentality that curiously ignores their decades of character/unit customizability (something few if any other games systems could even come close to) killed the Corsairs as an army. Sure, sure, Foregworld's roolz boyz opted for the lowest of low hanging fruit in the 2018 FAQ with the following statement: :

Corsair Reaver Band, Abilities Add the following ability: ‘Corsairs: So long as your Warlord is Aeldari, you can include this unit in a Patrol, Battalion, or Outrider Detachment even if that Detachment contains no HQ units. However, if you do so, that Detachment’s Command Benefits are changed to ‘None’.’

Okay sure, that technically works but...the lack of an actual HQ still irks the hell out of me. This past weekend I just fielded my Corsairs as an auxiliary support detachment. However with reinforcements coming via ebay, I'll soon have enough Corsairs for a patrol detachment, and for that I'd like an HQ of some sort to lead it. 

Thus, I thought I'd forge my own fucking narrative and opted for the next-to-the-lowest hanging fruit: the Void Dreamer. In prior editions, Void Dreamers are the navigators of Corsair fleets, and on the table top, were essentially glorified Warlocks with a few more options for wargear, with...for the most part, a vastly inferior selection of mediocre psychic abilities.

That said, they were also cheap, and thus my usual go-to HQ choice. Never having a large number of corsairs myself, I figured most 'Princes' couldn't be bothered with such small and insignificant actions. Besides, I already have 2 Index Autarchs, so there's no need for a Corsair equivalent in my collection.

I still have the mini that I had used as a Void Dreamer previously, the original Farseer mini, and given said Farseer's abysmal performance last weekend, where he failed to cast ANYTHING for the first 3 turns (yes, even with rerolls), he was in for a demotion. Rather than just making him a Warlock however, is Exodite brethren gave him the boot apparently, and to navigate the stars for a bunch of pirates he goes...

As such I just took the Warlock page out of the Craftworlds codex PDF, and altered it to my liking to change the Warlock into a Void Dreamer :

Right-click and save as...

Slightly off topic but still very relevant, I'm sure you'll note that I nerfed the brace of pistols down from a D6 to a D3 (doing the same for my other Corsairs as well). I just didn't like the idea that en entire faction could be (assuming you rolled high) better gunslingers than the average 30k Moritat or hell, even Cypher! Oh, and one more thing: I dropped the higher price for the Felarch making it a free squad upgrade just like every other squad Sgt./Nob/Exarch/etc. in the GAME! Seriously, why hasn't THAT been FAQ'd yet???

Pistols and squad leaders aside, I figured that most of the Void Dreamers' Psyhic abilities would be navigationally oriented, and thus of minimal utility on the battlefield. So the only offensive power he has is the Warlock's Destructor version of Smite. However given the Dreamer's talents of reading the warp, he/she can attempt to dispel two psychic powers a turn. That makes my Void Dreamer kind of a defensive leader (which I'll admit is odd for pirates), but is hardly game breaking. 

I'm sure he/she has other powers, but I'd imagine being able to psychically sail a freighter (why on earth I stripped this mini of that wonderful paint job I'll never know...) through an ethereal, soul-screaming patch turbulence has little table top merit. 

The 'condensed for my collection' point values, omitting all of
the other Forgeworld goodies I neither have nor can afford
(without purchasing them from our Russian friends...).

Point costs for the Void Dreamer are the same as the warlock, and the costs of his wargear are also unchanged.

I'll be using this guy going forward (with my opponents' permission of course), though I honestly don't see any reason why they would object to it.  

Also, for all of the Americans out there: Happy Independence day! Now go out there, drink heavily, barbecue, and (carefully?) play with your explosives!

Saturday, June 29, 2019

The Jasper


Late last year My Beloved Wolfy and I made a rather expensive (for us) Impulse buy, and on a Kickstarter no less. We bought ourselves a new dining room table. Most people right now are thinking so? That's gaming related how? Well. It was a Jasper, meaning its not only a dining room table, but a game table as well!

WIP: this is as far as I got Friday evening before calling it a night.

Unlike most kickstarters that I've backed, this one only ran about a month late on the estimated delivery time. Part of that delay was due to feedback on a short run of prototype tables, several of which were damaged in shipping. Resulting in a redesign of their packaging. Yeah, I'm okay with that sort of delay. From what I understand, as soon as the project was funded (in approx. 9 minutes!), mass production started!

3.5' x 5.5' of no dice rolling off of this table's surface gaming space!

The tables' manufacturer is a small custom game table manufacturer in Jasper Missouri. Previously, they built the Duchess game table which I would have liked to have gotten, but couldn't afford at the time. Their other tables are laughably out of our reach, but we splurged on the Jasper.

You'd never know this was game table if we didn't tell you.

Aside from a few inquiries from Wolfy along the lines of where the fuck is MY table?!?, the wait for this KS was mercifully short. It took a week or so to find a home for our old dining room table (Florida, though we're only trucking it as far as Knoxville). We disassembled that, and I lugged its dreadfully heavy parts into other rooms for temporary storage. Thus, with our dining room cleared, I started assembly Friday night. 

Removable cup holder optional location #1: on each corner of the short table edges. 

The instructions were nigh on fool-proof...ha! I bested that theory in no time at all! Mistake #1: 'No honey I don't need any help, I can do it myself.' Followed immediately thereafter by mistake #2: trying (in futility) to get the incorrect bolts into what I thought were their allotted holes. 20 wasted minutes later....and I realized my mistake and it was fairly smooth sailing from there. 

Removable cup holder optional location #2: the middle of the long table edges. Regardless they don't ever need to be on the gaming surface!

Plenty of room for an X-Wing map,
whilst having a 1/3 of the table top for lists, tokens, etc. 

Well, enough rambling: its built! Looks great! is solid as hell, and the finish matches our chairs perfectly! Neverness is slated to come over this evening for the table's inaugural game. So look for a battle report from one of us soon.

My never used Kill Team map. Could probably move that table section to the center and still have 2 side-by-side games going!

a standard Battletech map sheet is about the size of the KT map, but even my over-sized hax map fits perfectly (something I made sure to of when I printed it off some months back).

After some deliberation, we rotated the table 90 degrees for a better fit for the room. Here it is, all set up for 40k vs. Neverness who is currently enroute.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

My Eldar recollection...

Given that this minis 1st battle will be vs. Neverness, those ought to be Space Marine helms decorating the base, but I didn't have any handy.

What recollection you ask? Well, to put it simply: I fucking hate assembling Guardians! My sausage fingers (several of which are now covered in glue) just don't do well at all with those fiddly little antennae on their backs. Why did those need to be separate pieces again? Oh that's right, they didn't

Looking at the clock I'm then left asking myself: 
it took how long to assemble one friggin' mini?!?


 To top it off, this is a Corsair. Ya know, the one and only army to die with the release of 8th ed., yeah those guys. Now they're just a few, vastly overpriced squads (well, when you have footsloggers armed with lasblasters like I do).  Oh well. For all that, with a 24" range he's more likely to kill some Space Wolves mon'keigh dogs with this than my other grunt with the fusion blaster is. 

Oh, and in case you were wondering, this month has been brutal, and as such, aside from that earlier game of X-WIng this one mini has been the extent of my hobbying. :-(

Monday, June 17, 2019

Amateurs at War...


Confusion? Check. Collisions? Check. An actual battle plan? Yeah-no.

The other day I was perusing the various gaming blogs that are out there and came across this one. X-wing! Ya know, that game we all used to play all the time until everyone suddenly stopped for reasons I don't quite recall. The final nail in the local X-Wing coffin was the new edition. 

I have no idea how it plays as compared to the original, and nobody I know is/was willing to shell out close to $200 for multiple conversion sets to bring their collections 'up to date'. That combined with the vast majority of the 'new releases' being old ships with current cards/tokens and a corresponding price increase, doesn't help. Yeah, no thanks. 

Both sides on the initial turn.

Anyways, the old edition works just fine and we have a bucket load of ships for it, furthermore we watched most of Rogue One the other night when we stumbled across it whilst flipping thru channels. Thus, when I asked my Beloved Wolfy if she was up for a game in lieu of going out to the FLGS, she was all for it!

To hell with space slugs! What the hell is THAT?!?!

I put together a few 'new' lists using a site that didn't update to the new edition, though admittedly I had to flip thru old blog posts on here to remember just what all we had. I used one of the new Empire lists, trying out the TIE shuttle for the 1st time, whilst Wolfy opted for an old Scum and Villainy (she doesn't qualify as the former) List. 

Baxter and I contemplating our next moves...

Bax had to be removed a few times as (1) he was in the way, (2) we couldn't see thru him and (3) he would suddenly start swiping his paw at and/or trying to chew on random ships and tokens! Luckily photos taken for this post allowed us to return the displaced-by-kitty ships back in their approximate locations afterwards.

Dis planet iz mine!!

Needless to say we were rusty. I opted for the simple old wipe each other out game. Bad idea as it turns out, we ought to have just gone for our Wolfy's hit and run scenario or the like. Indeed she would later state that Women like a story in everything, doesn't matter if it's porn or a mini game, there ought to be a story. lol, that's my girl! 

As the game wore on, we were lucky to find that the TIE shuttle was equipped with a pizza oven, as it was already too late to cook dinner, and the game's end was still nowhere in sight. 

Needless to say, due to some really good rolling on both our parts (which was noted as being uncharacteristic for me by my opponent...), along with some really, really bad positioning, the game seemed to go on forever without inflicting any actual casualties. Unlike back when we were playing regularly, and ships started dropping on turn 2. 

The first ones to finally go BOOM!!!

Instead the first ships were lost in turns...8, 9? I don't know, it was somewhere around then. Damage was being inflicted, make no doubt, just not enough to finish anything off. Seriously, you know its bad when Z-95s seem resilient!

Both of our lists looked a lot like this for entirely too long a time...

Seriously, the last half-a-dozen turns or so, every ship on the board was limping along on their last hull point and yet they still wouldn't die!!

Captain Jonus, expertly beaching his shuttle on an asteroid like a whale on the shore, and taking a point of damage for his efforts. 

Indeed, it was daylight when we got going and just after midnight when the game ended and the Empire ran out the white flag for a table edge. 

The final four, circling that rock in a Top Gun-esque duel that went on for far too long before one of us had the bright idea to utilize a K-turn.

Resulting in the final fight and...

...the Empire's flight from the board!

Anyways, despite the never-ending nature of this particular game, we had a lot of fun, and hope to play some more soon. Maybe even try and resurrect it locally much like Battletech. Given that none of us have to actually buy anything is just an added bonus!

Monday, June 10, 2019

WAAAAUGH!!! in da Appalachun Subsektor


My army gives the illusion of being fully painted from this (cropped) angle...

The elusive WAAAAUGH!!! Neverness came out of his mountain stronghold to bring the even more reclusive Long Wayz Dezert Groop to battle. Our semi-annual Ork vs. Ork games are always a hoot, and this one was no different.

Battlin' in da round! Deployment zones spilt the table in half (easily marked for us by the seam for the table leaf)

We went a little old school, playing at home on the dining room table instead of on a proper gaming board (which I gave to WaaarghPug as I no longer had room to store it). Digging out my rarely used terrain was something akin to an archeological expedition, and scrounging around for the various bits and bobs that make up my army was much the same. 

1k point patrol list of Da Long Wayz Dezert Groop. This is pretty much the entirety of my army these days. Whatever else I have are random odds and ends of partial units, and a now index-only not-so-big mek on awarbike. 

In the end though all but my lobba was present and accounted for, with a grot tank filling in as a proxy for the missing lobba. Also, as it turns out, my terrain is far better painted than any of my armies...which is kind of amusing as painting terrain is one of my least favorite things to do. 

The back window of my (dirty) real life trukk. 

Given the pic above, its a forgone conclusion that I was using the Deff Skulls Kultur for my Army. The scenario was 'the prize' (aka Capture the flag), and with all infantry in my army having Dis iz ours! Zog off! (objective secured), hanging onto said flag would be much easier, especially as I only had a single troops choice. 

Also, my army was a marginal 2 points lower in value than Neverness', giving me a 'twist' card. I drew the outflank card, meaning after deployment, I put my Grot Mega Tank into reserve in order to outflank on either turns 1 or 2.  That would prove quite fortuitous...

The following is my usual photo dump and running commentary which gives you a vague idea as to what was going on. Neverness has a bat rep of his own, so if you're get lost in this recap, there's likely a more coherent recounting on his blog.

All sides deployed and ready for a good krumpin'!

My left flank, with Krump & Pittance (my Warboss) and BOOM! (weird boy) bringing up the rear. 

My right flank, just before Da Grot Spee (mega tank) was put into reserves to outflank.

Having won the roll to deploy first, Neverness' Goffs deployed right on top of the objective, taking immediate control of it. Were he fielding Blood Axes, I'd have been in trouble. Luckily though he was using the Goff Kultur, meaning he would instead bring it closer to me!

Neverness' initial advance. That said, this pic is merely here to show off his impressive (though still WIP) Dakka Jet.

The Dakka jet, (the surprisingly dangerous) grots, lootas and shokk attack gun armed big mek all dumped into my boys mob, eviscerating it in preparation for the inevitable charge...

Da Goffs charge in, where their kultur essentially gives them the Dakka! Dakka! Dakka! rule in close combat! Honestly I have no idea how any of my boys survived this onslaught. Only their upgrade to ard boyz and the fact that we screwed up LD/morale tests in the first turn meaning they weren't wiped out at the get go. That wasn't intentional, but rather due to neither of us having played 40k in months... 

On the other side, my Matilda (battlewagon) was sorely missing its old AV:14, as the shoota boys tore into it with a vengeance, both in shooting and then hand-to-tread combat!

Surviving the 1st Goff turn, BOOM! cast warpath on my boys to help make up for their losses.  Then both BOOM!, and Krump & Pittance charged into the Goffs to even the odds vs my boys!

Shockingly, I wiped them out. BOOM! took da flag, and Krump & Pittance, always eager to beat on the little guys, turned thier sights on the nearby grot mob...

In the backfield of turn 1, Da Grot Spee emerged, and along with an impressive long ranged volley of big shoota fire from Da Matilda, succeeded in causing the Lootas to break and run, huzzah!

My weedy Kommados showed up as well, though they managed only a few pot-shots. 

Neverness' warboss, rode in his trukk up to flank da Matilda. However, My tankbustas frantically disembarked the quickly dying matilda, and did what they do best: shot the living shit out of his trukk! They'd have killed it too were it not for the ramshackle rule. Da Matilda's zzap gun tried to assist, but instead maintained its' streak of hitting nothing since the demise of the 3rd ed ork codex. Thus, the tankbustas charged in and finished it off, much to the warboss' dismay.

Faced with the hideous prospect of overwatch fire from a FULL unit of tankbustas, da boss instead shoots one in the head, and signals the Dakka Jet which wipes my unit off of the table! (yeah that fucker needed to die...).

Shortly there after, Da Matilda met its end, though not before grinding a few boys under it's treads. Neveress' boss and boys turned their sights on my big gunz. The Grot gunners prepared to sell themselves in a blind panic before hiding under their gunz! This tactic killed a few boys, but didn't prevent the inevitable. 
Meanwhile those sneaky Kommandos move into position for their favorite kind of charge: from behind!

Ya know, it only took close to a decade, but finally Da Grot Spee had it's chance to run amok and shine! Here, it had just killed  Neverness' Big mek w/shokk attack gun that was holed up in my old, 2nd ed. era White Dwarf pattern bunker! Indeed, the twin-Grotzooka is a terrifying weapon in this edition, averaging 14 shots per volley (though only a 3rd of those are effective).

Da shoota boys were sadly not caught flat footed, and killed 3 of the 5 Kommandos on the way in! The remaining two idiots badasses killed more than enough to make up for those losses, that said...

...their cause was of course lost. It did leave neverness' boys in da crater though, and he loves (minis sliding and falling off of) craters...

Back on the other side, Krump and my boyz (again with warpath cast on the latter) successfully slaughtered the grots, though 4 boyz were lost in the process. 

Enraged at the loss of his minions, the Runtherder attacks Krump! Yet once again, Krump beats the little guy down.

The remnants of my horde (now a mere 4 models) advances towards the enemy. BOOM! elects to hold beck with da flag, but tries to remain in da fight by casting Smite Spite. Instead he rolls a snake eyes, damned near killing himself instead!

Tired of the rampaging Grot Spee, Neverness' dakka jet uses the 'long, uncontrolled bursts' stratagem as it makes a strafing run on my grot mega tank, inflicting a half dozen or so wounds! In return the mega tank fills the sky with (quite ineffective) lead and scrap! To me, the exchange brings to mind a WWII naval engagement.

As the dakka jet completes its circuit of the little table in the backfield, Neverness' army moves to retake the flag and finish off my shattered army.

The two warbosses prepare to charge one another, Krump however was badly bleeding by this point (though I don't recall who gets credit for that). 

As such his cause was lost, with his last words proclaiming his demise as fake nooz!!

Da Grot Spee, warily eyes its next target...

The warboss passes the tank, looking for da' flag, and leaving the boys to finish it off. 

Da badly damaged Grot Spee manages to kill a few boys before suffering it's last wound and...uh...sinking into oblivion.

With nowhere to run, the Dakka Jet bearing down on him, BOOM! decids to go out with glory and casts...a fucking snake eyes! Daemons from the warp cast aside the worthless flag he was carrying and suck his soul into oblivion, denying Neverness the kill!

Out of both armies, these few are all that survived!

Well that was bloody and fun! Of the 150 or so orks + vehicles that started the game, all that survived was Neverness' Dakka Jet, Warboss, and 5 boyz! Yup, that's a good scrap in my books, even if I did get tabled! 

Ork vs. Ork games are prettymuch the only 40k games I can be coaxed into playing these days, though Neverness is keen to get in an Eldar vs. his...something rematch (hell, it was around 1:30am or so, you're lucky I remembered any of this at that hour). Perhaps I'll indulge him in a game of that, but for now my 40k bloodlust has been sated.