Monday, May 31, 2010

Blood Eagles - lessons learned & Kill Team

Hello and Happy Memorial Day everyone!

Well, I played 2 games this past weekend. The first, on Friday night was a 900pt. BFG game where my Rogue Trader fleet (much to the surprise of both of us) managed to take down an Emperor class battleship! A Dauntless light cruiser was also destroyed and a Gothic badly crippled and all for my only losses of: 2 frigates, 4 armed transports and 1 escort carrier. My Lunar class cruiser was also crippled. A decisive victory!

Revenge was had though as on the following evening, I played the same opponent with my Blood Eagles CSMs vs. his Mech IG. RHINOS! The Blood Eagles NEED rhinos! While I'm not fond of mech IG that doesn't move too far (if at all forward), and then moved BACK!, it is a valid tactic. Of the few of my troops that actually made it to HTH combat, they inflicted roughly 5 times the casualties received. Alas it was not enough. Pickett's charge in power armor, is still in the end, Pickett's charge. So Rhino's need to be added, some more anti-tank weapons would be good too. The havoc's were high on the list of targets, and their weaponry was inadequate to the task. Throw in an immobilized Vindicator & Dreadnought (it should be said that the Dread made a stupid amount of cover saves, i was tempted to bring that terrain piece home!) and it was a recipe for disaster.

So rhinos & bigger guns for chaos!

That would be enough for a post, maybe ad a photo, but my week would simply not be complete, were I not to put aside my current project(s) and start another. This week, its a Kill team. While I don't have the mission book, I've read over the scenario & really like the idea of this one. All models are independent, 200pts, 3 free USRs, after 50% casualties you have to test every round to not flee. Is it just me, or does that sound like the abridged 5th ed 40k version of Necromunda? Not the campaign, just the one-off game?

I was thinking of using Kroot, A Shaper with Furious charge, (2) Krootox', (-toxes? -toxen?) 1 with Slow & Purposeful the other with Relentless, then fill the rest of the points with basic warriors. Basically a free roaming mercenary war band. However my former Tau were of the Farsight enclave, so I don't have any Kroot.

Instead, I think I'll go back to the Necromunda idea & use some of my old Cawdor gangers. These will be used as IG veterans with camo cloaks.

Frateris Militia anyone?

For those who don't know, Frateris Militia was a unit in the old 'Sister of battle' codex. Basically they were a mob (think IG conscript platoon) of fanatical lunatics that were used as cannon fodder & tar pits. The Eccsliarchy isn't permitted to have their own troops aside from the the SoBs, the Frateris is kind of a gray area/bending of the rules. Most high level members of the Eccsliarchy have SoB bodyguard detachments, yet there are simply too many for that to be a reality. I'm sure that many (I'm thinking more of those in the 'middle management' level) have hand picked retinue's of 'retainers & servants' that are picked from the militia for use of their own personal guards/thugs/henchmen/etc.

The Eccsliarchy is often utterly ruthless, and I would think that a 'kill team' of this nature should reflect that. Dark & sinister colors, Many laden with all sorts of equipment beyond just their rifle, (pistols, a bedazzling array of vicious knives, and various tools to allow them entry where ever needed to do 'The Emperor's work'). The two in front are still bearing Necomunda gang paint, but as the other's are not yet done its no matter. The heavy bolter gunner & another will be added to a 60mm base & given relentless, the leader furious charge, and the grenade launcher tank hunter in case any vehicles are in opposition. I'm trying to remove the head off of a Cawdor juve @ the moment, so as to use it on the driver for a sentinel walker. I'm about halfway there on cutting through the torso, then I'll just need to grind off the excess to fit the Sentinel driver's torso.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Blood Eagles return!

Well, with my purchase of some dirt cheap CSMs off of ebay, I have indeed cobbled together a field-able CSM army.

Not too many minis painted for these guys, here's most of them.

Here's the rest, Lars Blood Eagle (my Lord) & my dreadnought.

Note: the Imperial Fist's former Termie's T-hammer arm under the dread.

This army has been an on again, off again side project. I kind of have a love/hate relationship with the CSM codex. YES, you can make a brutal list with it. BUT, the eviceration of the fluff by Gav Thorpe, and the fact that all legion armies can essentially be the same put me off. The 'all for one, one for all' should have been left to the Three Muskateers.

So skipping the Legion idea, I instead went with my own warband. I don't have much on background fluff. The 'Blood Eagle' was a ritualistic form of torture (resulting in) execution used by the Norse for particularly high valued targets. Google it, go to wikipedia, etc., a strong stomach is required (which i have and I still felt sick after first reading about it). I have a book on the history of the vikings that goes into gruesome detail on the Blood Eagle. So given that its also the name of my lord, the easy route would be to say they're Space Wolf Renegades. However I opted for them to be Wolf Brothers' survivors. The Wolf Brothers were a SW successor that suffered from severe geneseed degeneration and was excommunitcated and hunted (supposedly) to extinction. Their numbers depleted, no apothecaries surviving, they've turned to none other than the infamous Fabius Bile to help replenish their ranks. A dangerous prospect indeed.

I like the idea of Fabius's enhanced marines/monsters. I will need to get some spawn at some point to represent his 'oops, that didn't work' experiments. I've always seen the enhanced marines, especially with their self destructive tendencies, as more or less the 'fifth mark' of Chaos, the Mark of Malal. Malal is the 'Renegade God' hellbent on the destruction of the other chaos gods (again: google, wikipedia). Considering Fabius' wandering nature, the fact that he's not really associated with any named Chaos god, and his experimentation on Chaos marines that often turns out as bad for them as it does for any captured victims, Fabius easily strikes me as a possible follower of Malal.

Here's what I'm going to try out this weekend:
(Note, Lars himself will not be taking to the field.)

Blood Eagles, 1848 Points

Fabius Bile
Ivan the Cannon (Sorcerer)
Mark of Slaanesh, Doom ‘Bolter’

Twin-Linked Heavy Bolter, Extra Armor, Heavy Flamer

Fallen Angels (Chosen Marines, 5)
Plasma Pistol, Icon to Chaos Glory
Asp. Champ. w/Plasma-Bolter

Enhanced Marines (8)
Flamer, Icon of Khorne, Asp. Champ. w/Powerfist

Enhanced Marines (8)
Plasma Gun, Icon of Slaanesh, Asp. Champ. w/Powerfist

Enhanced Marines (8)
Plasma Gun, Icon of Nurgle, Asp. Champ w/Powerfist

Thousand Suns, Asp. Champ & (7) Grunts
Bolt of Change, Personal Icon

Lesser Demons (5)

Heavy Support:
Havoc Squad (6)
(1) Missile Launcher, (1) Heavy Bolter, (2) Plasma Guns
Icon of Chaos’ Glory

Demonic Possession

Again, a cobbled together menegerie (the Vindicator is still in the livery of my Dark hands' Loyalist SMs, the Havocs are leftovers, The Fallen Angels wandered in from who knows where), but for not using them in forever, it'll do I suppose. More of a training/getting the feel for the army list than anything.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Just some random bits & bobs....

Not too much of excitement this past week from a hobby point of view. Indeed i missed my usual Friday-ish post. I've just done some random stuff with no real coherent plan.

Here's what I got for this post:

Well, my Renegade IG fought 3 games over the past week, all three were capture & control & pitched battle. Game one a cake walk, the other two brutal slug fests. The first was vs. the proxied all to hell ork army that I was screaming about some ways back, but it was being borrowed by a newer player who's learning the ropes. So playing nice, I've learned that not going the 'all my eggs in the nob biker basket' was a good thing for my DLWDG army. Massed Imperial guard firepower backed by just a small 5-man psyker battle squad (or 'cheese on a stick' as I call it) is the perfect way to kill that unit. After losing roughly a third of your points on turn 2, there's really no way to recover. Game 1 = easy win for me. Fun was had by the Ork player though, which is good as i hate murdering the new guy. Game 2 was vs. Nids. My dice were with me, and the bane wolf did its best to show me that the chem cannon is the main gun, not the multi-melta as previously stated, accounting for approximately 12 genestealers! Turn 5 the nids were winning, turn 6 was a draw, turn & I pulled out a victory with one lone 'troops' model on his objective. 80+% casualties on all sides, so a good game! Game 3 vs. Orks again was another with casualties ranging up around the previous one, turn 5 was a tie, each with our objective, turn 6, (the last turn), no one had any objectives! (or troops left on the table) So a tie.

Speaking of Chaos, I picked up some CSMs on ebay cheap. True, in my financial state, i shouldn't be buying stuff, but 12 assembled (and well no less) plus extra bits for $17.50 shipping included. So with that and the other Blood Eagles (my renegade warband) that i already have, I can cobble together about a 1500pt army. I think.

I was going to sell my loyalist IG army to offset my truck expenses, but when i opened the case to take them out to photograph, a thought occurred to me. My first army was IG, I've had at least half a dozen IG armies over the years, but never have I had a fully painted one till this one. Then I closed the case, & put it back. With my Tau all but gone, that puts the Dark hands back on the auction block. The vindicator will fall to chaos, the scouts will swim in some simple green then on to the Aurora Chapter. My predator that I got an honorable mention for @ GD Atlanta a few years back will go into the display case, and the rest to ebay.

Speaking of the Aurora, I finished painting my captain today.

I haven't really thought of a name for him yet, or a back story aside from Papa JJ's rising star suggestion. In the interim, I've dubbed him 'Captain Ermie' after Hollywood's favorite Marine Corp drill instructor. I base coated the last two Bolt pistol/CCW scouts as well. The addition of the soon to be former DH scouts will bring me up to 17 Aurora minis, so a slow start, but still progressing.

So as I said, just a little of this & that.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Latrine Duty.

So, last week my ol' pick up truck took a bad roll on the ramshackle chart to the tune of several hundred dollars. In a serious funk, from a sudden unexpected expenditure followed immediately by GW's announcement that their raising prices for no other reason than they can, I was in some serious need of cheering up. Buying a new mini usually works, but that is out of the question for a while, and when I eventually can again...well, it'll cost even more than normal. However, building a tank is one of my favorite things to take my mind off of reality, and luckily i got a Hellhound kit for Christmas that was still in the box!


I've always liked the HH, though sadly it will never again be as good as the tactical nuclear weapon that its original version was back in 2nd. ed. 40k. The potential of a 2D6 explosion radius, and being able to blitzkrieg onto the table without getting blown up in my deployment zone (barring over-watch fire) was a glorious thing! The current HH comes in 3 variants. The standard which works well (I already have 2), the Devil Dog which resurrects the 2nd. ed. multi-melta rules in the form of a Melt-cannon, and finally the Banewolf.

The Banewolf with its range of just 'template', struck me as just as useless as the neutered HH of 3rd. ed. And so I ignored it, indeed I've never bothered with the devil dog either (though GW was nice enough to design the gun to be easily interchangeable without the need for magnets). Then, for whatever reason (curiosity I guess), I decided to proxy the Banewolf last winter just to see how it worked out, and fell in love with it! Not so much the weapon itself, but the idea behind it and how well it fit as a weapon of terror for Renegade Guard army.

Paint the barrels & piping BEFORE gluing it all together!

In truth, the Multi-melta is the tank's main weapon. The chem cannon rarely fires, but if it does...well, you'd best hope for death, a quick death! You don't want to survive! The Imperial Guard uses toxic chemicals whereas my renegade guard, (steel yourself) they empty the latrines (be they @ base camp or the holding tanks of their dropships) into the 'ammo' tanks and let em go! Glory to the enemy that is blessed with the honor of bathing in the glorious effluent of the followers of Nurgle! Not all of my renegades are followers of Nurgle, but that makes the whole concept sound even worse than it already does. When I first fired the chem cannon & killed half a Gray Hunter pack, I was asked what it was actually shooting and I came up with that on the fly. The SW player literally gagged & physically shuddered, and so it stuck (literally & figuratively). Only Chaos would use such vile weapons.

So as I said, pray for death!

In the event you survive, odds are your comrades will kill you anyways, your geneseed will NOT be harvested, and your remains will be burned in the hottest flames possible! Once when asked why I was firing the chem cannon at a rhino, I replied 'cause it'll never be right again...'

Can you believe I was called a 'bastard' for that?


Thursday, May 13, 2010


Having been fixated on Marines & Orks here of late, I figured that I'd pull the renegades out for a game @ my FLGS this coming weekend. There was a bit of rearranging needed as I sold of the cadian/catachan contingent a little ways back, so all that are left either have gas masks or are mutated enough not to be concerned but some bad air. I usually use ('counts as') Colonel 'Extra-hands' Straken, but found a lowly captain mini that I painted up some time ago but have never used, so added him to the roster instead.

However after my previous sale of the cadian/catachan minis, I was a medic short on my company command squad. Now, i know when you think chaos & medic, you're probably thinking the same thing as I am. That from a 'fluff' point of view that that doesn't make too much sense. BUT, the feel no pain USR is really a boon on the table top. So after some scrounging for both bitz & ideas, I came up with my medic, whom I call the 'Blood-gusher'.

The mini is an old Warzone model, Ducal militia Sergeant I think, with a 2nd. ed. Ork pistol, SM knife turned-punch dagger, some small knives from a Mordheim sprue, the helmet is from Pig Iron Miniatures, and both loyalist and Chaos grenades & pouches. Quite the amalgamation.

First off, who else would be more interested in the bloody processes of battlefield surgery than a devotee of Khorne. Arteries severed, blood everywhere...(I'm picturing a US civil war field hospital in which countless amputations, and other similarly brutal ministrations have taken place). Remember folks, Khorne cares not from whence the blood flows, only that is flows...

This one came out super saturated, finally gave up on trying to tweak it.

Much like the Chirurgen from the Witch-Hunter retinues, every Chaos commander needs a chief torturer for extracting information from captives, as well as assisting the apostate preachers in the pre-battle ritual sacrifices. As for the 'feel no pain' USR, I'm sure that you too would refuse to succumb injury when accompanied by a Khornate Medicae. Because if the enemy doesn't kill you, he certainly will! Despite all of his kit, I would rather doubt anesthetics are included.

I can just see a continuous line of conversation resembling Monty Python's Black knight scene...

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Starting the 10th Company

Hi all,

I'm starting to make a bit of progress on the Aurora Chapter Scout company. I now have three finished scouts.

In the center is the squad Sergeant, flanked by two grunts. The one with the red armor & servo-skull is an initiate slated to join the ranks of the chapter's Techmarines. Should he survive his training he will them be sent to Mars for further training rather then joining a reserve company as would be normal. This color scheme is much easier than the yellow/black of the Marines Malevolent. The armor is snot green and gretchin green for the cloth.

I've also been working on my captain and command squad. This requires a bit more thought than your standard company command I think. Command squads are normally veterans from the company, and in many cases, senior sergeants that are also veterans from the venerated 1st. company. However, ALL marines are veterans of the 10th company!


I figure that the 10th company's command squad should be made of grizzled veterans, survivors who've outlived their own squads, or have suffered grievous injury, yet still survived (after all, not everyone gets to be a dreadnought). I had a bunch of Iron Hands bionic arms bits, so after stripping & disassembling several old marines, i rebuilt them using these bits.

All but the Captain (guy with green base coat) and the marine with the flamer have bionics. From what I understand (wink, wink) the flamer marine was the lone survivor of a fluke drop pod 'incident'. The old devastator marine with the auspex will be my Apothecary. No company Champion or standard. I would imagine that these guys don't see the battlefield too often as the 10th company rarely deploys enmass, so their kindova basic outfit. Its real tempting to give these guys with all the bells & whistles, however that also makes them real expensive, and there are no models to receive the dubious honor of being the first to die to save the more valuable models. Aside from the Apothecary and flamer, the squad also has a single marine with a power sword, the rest just bolters.

The captain is also without bionics, I'm not sure on just how 10th company captains are chosen, so I've no idea how he's managed to keep all of his arms intact. This model was intended to be my captain for the MM scout company, hence the large power sarrissa attached to his forearm. The MM were said to use them on their bolters in the Salamander novel, and there was no other good option for giving him a power weapon that I could see. Given the MM's rumored conflicts with the Black Dragons, he apparently saw the value of having your weapon physically attached to one's arm, and had his modified accordingly. It looked cool, so i left it as is. His bolter is taken from an old metal captain kit. It varies from the standard pattern bolter, modified to better handle the Hellfire ammunition I would imagine. Call it the Uriel Ventris syndrome, but I rather like the sparsely armed SM commanders. These guys are fluffed to be virtual gods of war, well, time to prove it. Bolter withe Hellfire ammo, power weapon with digital weapon, frag & Krak. That's it. A bolter and CCW was all that was my original intention, but there was a gap on the back side of the sarrissa, so I trimmed down an auspex to give it a few buttons, so its a power weapon. Recently I've taken a liking to hellfire ammo & digital weapons, so he got those too. His backpack (not shown) has a trophy spike with a skull and Necron warrior head speared on it too. The backpack was from my Imperial Paladins captain, so this guy is kind of an amalgamation of previously ill-fated SM side projects.

Hopefully he will prevail, where his predecessors have failed.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Breaking the BA codex.

Hello, I'm posting 2 days in a row, kinda odd for me, but I had another one of my oddball ideas & wanted some feedback.

First off though I wanted to thank everyone for the concern in regards to my having to wade through an allergy induced hell. Happens every year, this year just seems to be worse than average. My boss at work feels as bad as i do, yet isn't taking anything. So in my case, the pharmaceutical industry has failed me.

Second, when I'd mentioned the Marines Malevolent idea to my friend Happyspawn (his handle when he posts), he just smirked & said 'good luck with that.' He knew I'd get fed up with painting black & yellow and wouldn't get too far with them. I think my friends sometimes know me better than i know myself, and in this case he is correct.
I already am looking for excuses not to break out the yellow paint (not that I can stop coughing/sneezing enough to really paint yet) and so my idea for a MM army is best described as an epic FAIL. Just another pipe dream.


So where to next?

I could go back to the Imperial wait, i sold that tank on ebay, so scratch that. So back to perusing the varied SM chapters for ideas.

Some years back I tried (and failed) to do an Aurora chapter SM army. Most were primed, a few painted, but they died when i couldn't paint their shoulder icon with anything even approaching consistency (and GW has since released Aurora shoulder pads & I now have teh ability to make my own decals too). Most of the army I want will be scouts, so while the metal shoulder pads won't work, its obvious that they've not yet earned the right to wear the chapter's heraldry (convenient eh?). In any case, they got little further than the Marines Malevolent. BUT they easily fit my M.O. when it comes to Marine chapters. For starters they're green. Happyspawn likes to comment that virtually everything I paint is green (whereas all he paints is gray). I believe i used snot green (appropriate for this time of year), so its brighter than my Dark Hands army. Also they have little in the way of fluff, and what they do have is workable with the BA codex.

Photo copyrighted by Gamesworkshop & acquired from, and used without permission of either party.

So sticking with my scout company idea, starting out with (4) troops choices, i.e.: one squad with each weapon type. Captain, Chaplain (odd to be an elite), Librarian, Techmarine and tanks @ BS3 for scout crews.

What I WON'T be using from the BA codex includes:

Special Characters
Sanguinary Guard
Sternguard/vanguard (I believe they have all of those options too)
Assault marines
Tactical Marines
Death Company
Death Company Dreadnoughts
Regular Dreadnoughts
Storm Ravens
Landraiders as transports (much less deep striking)

Now, I'm sure that just a few of you are wondering where I'm going with this, and why use the BA codex as Aurora Marines are Ultramarine successors. Well, there is one bit of fluff that fits PERFECTLY with the BA codex:

'The Aurora Chapter is known for its armored assaults, and as such possesses three times the typical number of Land Raiders and Predators.' (again lifted from without permission)

Scouts are known for, well, scouting, and out flanking, and the Aurora is known for having more tanks than a normal codex chapter. With the BA codex, I can field (6) predators, outflanking with three!
Now, this does fall into the spamming weapons gripe that I often have (somewhat mitigated by running the tanks at BS3), and I'm sure that the 'flavor of the month club' @ my local FLGS will have a field day when they see me perusing the new BA codex.


That just might work!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Progress has ground to a halt...

I hate this time of the year...

Spring = pollen, LOTS and LOTS of pollen! Despite prescription strength medication (which seems to be doing nothing), my life has devolved into an endless cycle of sneezing, coughing and blowing my nose. At my current pace its one box of tissues per day! I tried painting a captain for my MM scout company. However, due to the above problems, it took close to an hour to just get a halfway decent base coat on the mini. At that point I put away the brushes & said 'to hell with it!'

As it is, I've got a few concerns regarding the Marines Malevolent. Despite great fluff & feel to the army, but the black and yellow scheme goes against my usual preference for armies. That preference being for nice and opaque colors so if a mistake is made, its easily corrected. One misstep with the black or even just boltgun metal (regardless of how steady my hand, its inevitable, a sudden sneeze yesterday wrought havoc on the captain's helmet with the black!) requires 1-2 coats of bleached bone followed by 2 separate shades of yellow. Kind of a laborious process, and has slowed things down considerably.

Another thing is, that my decals that I made for them look more brown than black once applied. I was trying to figure out why as that's never been an issue before, and I think its due to the yellow paint. The black isn't entirely opaque so I may have to paint over them with black after they dry, another setback.

Now, is that all un-doable? No. Realistically doable? Its debatable.

In the past, prior to sticking to just opaque colors, most of my armies consisted of just a few painted minis and the rest primed, before just getting shelved and sold off as just another unfinished side product...

I'm already seeing these 'black and yellow bastards' (which, when it comes to painting is oddly appropriate) running dangerously close to that fate. I dunno, until I can breathe normally again, the point is kinda moot. I'll just ponder it in the mean time I suppose.