Thursday, September 29, 2011

For King and Catrawd!!!


I had to look that last word up. Apparently its roughly equivilent to a regiment though its also been referred to as a battalion (perhaps a gutted regiment?). Anyways, these six are the entirety of my meager Quar collection. They're of the Royalist faction who are made up of the few remaining independent kingdoms that are fighting against the Crusader cause (to unify the planet under a single flag). Of course as quarrelsome as Quar are (see what I did there?) royalist rebellions, revolts, insurgencies, etc., mean that there is almost as much fighting in the 'conquered' Kingdoms as there are on the front lines.

Close ups of the last four painted Quar.

Squads appear to be 5-10 Quar with rhyflers, a Yawdryl (Sgt.) and a LMG gunner. However just buying a few random minis, I instead have an Caerten (Lt.), 4 Rhyflers (grunts) & the LMG. It doesn't look like there are any royalist Yawdrly's available as individual models, but being a small shop with surprisingly good communication it ought to not be too hard to get one along with a few extra Rhyflers to flesh out a squad. At that point, I'll have about all I need for one side of a skirmish sized game. Well, barring the rules and an opposing side that is...

Monday, September 26, 2011

A very, very Lone Wolf...


Below you see my former Iron Warriors' Warsmith Kursk. The Iron priest was a hold over from an old SW army and not wanting it to go unused, I had converted it for use with my Iron Warriors. Conveniently the Iron Priest is one of the few metal GW loyalist marines that has no Imperial Aquilas on it anywhere, which meant that all I needed was a servo-pack and arm swap before sending him on his way to chaos.
My Iron warriors were themselves sold off years ago (prior to my selling of anything on ebay even), however being one of my favorite models Warsmith Kursk was separated out. Aside from an occasional cameo in a random CSM list here & there over the years, he's spent his time as a permanent member of my 'Hall of Heroes' (i.e.: my retired minis display stand).

The problem with my Hall of Heroes is that it sits up on top of a bookcase, and more than once a model has taken a swan dive off of it when said bookcase was bumped into. Indeed sometime back that was the fate of my old Iron Hands Iron Father 'Samuel L. Jackson' who was indeed a bad mother-fucker (prior to hitting the hardwood floor @ terminal velocity).

Kursk, has narrowly avoided this fate several times and I reasoned that the servo-pack was not helping his odds as it left the model rather unbalanced. So after snapping the photos above for posterity, I decided to return him to the Emperor's light.

Returned to Space Wolf colors (primed black with a drybrush of codex gray followed by SW gray, delvan mud, and finally a bleached bone drybrushing) and sporting a simple plastic pack, I think he came out rather well. Given that I don't actually have a SW army (and often complain about the over abundance of them locally) he is now simply a Lone Wolf.

Lone Wolves from what I gather, are the last survivors of wiped out packs who want nothing more than to join their lost brethren. However I'm sure that that isn't the only reason for going on a suicide run. Perhaps he was exiled by the other Iron Priests or renounced his position in the chapter's armory himself for some failure of duty. I was thinking of maybe something along the lines of in an act of misguided brevity he skipped a verse in a drop pods' ritual activation catechisms, angering it's machine spirit and causing the retro thrusters to not activate, thus pancaking a dreadnought during an orbital drop.

Something like that.

Anyways, as I said I haven't fielded Wolves in several years, but going from what I know of them, I would figure that potential Iron Priests are separated from their packs while serving as a Blood Claw, and so I put (what I assume is) a Blood Claw marking on his shoulder pad, and his original pack marking on his right leg. His bionic arm with frost blade (can Lone Wolves even get those?) is from an IG sentinel, and a combi-weapon rounds out his weapons. Of course he has the required wolf tail hanging on his pack and I added a brass etched cog from the GW basing kit as well, as I wanted to mechanicum-up his pack a bit.

Anyways, he'll now sit on the shelf and hopefully an army won't materialize around him in the future (much like one did after my Exodite test model came into being).

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Saved by the split force org!


So, some ways back I shelved my Aurora chapter army and started debating whether or not to send them the way of ebay (like so many others before them). Problem was that I really like my painted Aurora minis, just not the army itself. So I started to ask myself why?

Well, I had intended to just build a Scout company army. Nice theme, though not very competitive, but a fun & different SM list than what is always down @ the game shop. However with a low point total I would just add in allied Witch Hunters, tac. squads, etc.. Then the Tyranids arrived in force and Tac Squads became Sternguard, a Librarian showed up, and an arms race began with the Aurora generally staying on the losing end as the fun & themed list was unceremoniously discarded in an attempt to become a competitive list that just happened to have a lot of scouts in it.

Scouts? Competitive?

...brief pause for laughter...

So after much thought & consideration I just said 'fuck it, I want my themed 10th Co. army'. Plus I don't have to paint 100 scouts, I mean it doesn't have to be the WHOLE 10th company...

(1) The 10th company or any company for that matter is rarely @ full strength.

(2) Easily a third or so are on individual squad level deployments/training exercises.

(3) Easily another third are just a bunch of snot nosed brats who are doing push ups, not running fast enough while being yelled/shot at (for combat simulation of course), getting continually grilled on imperial indoctrination/weeded out for flaws/screaming as they're implanted with organs (that their bodies may or may not accept) via somewhat sadistic chirurgens who don't believe in any form of anesthetics, and are in general just not fit for combat...yet.

That leaves me with roughly 30 or so scouts to play with. Toss in a Company commander & his small support staff and that'll fit into roughly 1000 points I figure.

...another (not so) brief pause for...

Nobody plays @ only 1000 points! (or) Only new players that don't own enough models play at 1k! (or) I can't take anything that's good! (or) I can't take a Deathstar, and you can't win a game with out one! (or) don't you have anything else with you? (or) I have some extra models if you need to borrow/proxy some stuff...(or [and one of my personal favorites]) Its impossible to field an effective Space Wolf army at anything less than 1500 points! (that's bad news for anyone starting with Wolves I guess, and doesn't take into account the 1k Logan-wings either, regardless don't argue as he will not be swayed).

So after all of that pissing & moaning which is something I often hear when suggesting any game below 1850 points (and damn those evil GW people for making us buy more mod--umm, wait...). I gotta ask, is 4ok really a game about strategy & tactics? Or is 40k about Deathstars? (which ironically always gets blown up in the Star Wars Movies...) I mean, if you can not only take one, but rather all of your army's bells & whistles, then where's the challenge?

Its the Internet! Its the net lists! Its...the....way umm, the way that...everyone...umm...plays these days...yeah.

...until there's an odd man out @ the FLGS. A guy shows up late while other people are deploying, or two friends want to come to my house to play, but no one wants to sit there & just watch, or there are too many people @ the shop for the tables available. So what d'ya do? Most often there it ends up with a team game. Either 2 v. 2, or 2 v. 1, or a 3 player carnage scenario (which still is best @ a 1250pts or less often rendering that option moot to the opinions mentioned above).

In 2 v. 2's you often end up with an apocalypse game that's shoe horned into a normal 40k game and isn't too much fun in my opinion. I just avoid those. Or you can whip out the sharpies & start gutting an army like a fish to bring it down to 1k to make things more manageable. However in a 2 v 1, you can swamp the '1' with 6 heavies and the like.

To solve this overloading of slots in the force org., somebody somewhere came up with the 'split force org.' set up in which two people each build an army as follows:

up to 1-Elite
1-3 troops
up to 1-heavy
up to 1-Fast attack
and one optional elite/heavy/fast attack may be used if the other player isn't which makes for a fairly balance force org. Not sure if its universal or not, but locally we allow for units that don't take force org slots to be used as well (i.e.: Command squads, advisers, SW getting 2 HQs in the slot of 1, etc.).

Now, in a 2 v. 1. game that isn't always a balanced game, as the '1' can take all of the bells & whistles, whereas the '2' have armies that are built out of strict limitations. army is built as a balanced force (why hello Aurora Scouts...), and the other is..well...just cheese for lack of a better term. Say taking (5) Grey hunters with a power weapon & flamer covers the (1) required troop choice, and probably rolls in @ around 175ish points. That would leave them 825ish points for the HQ & accompanying Deathstar unit. Yeah, for an army list that's pretty risky putting all of your eggs in that one basket, However when that is paired with an army that was specifically built for the split force org., its really not so bad.

...well in theory I guess...

So coming in full rambling circle now, I've decided to build the Aurora 10th co. as 1k split force org. army. So I can have my fluffy theme, and if I get paired up with some cheese-ball partner that's fine (for me anyways) as it doesn't compromise my principles and it has the added benefit of being easily portable and is more convenient than having to rewrite and/or gut an existing list to accommodate the odd man out @ the shop.

So there you have it, my Auroras (and their BS:3 predator) are saved!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Another Quar


I finished painting another Quar Crusader this weekend and have a third pretty far along. Here's the second:
With me not having any of the rules for these rotund little guys, I've instead been perusing the Zombiesmith forums for background fluff and found quite a bit of it here. I'm not sure but I believe that that's all fan fiction (and unlike a lot of fan fiction, its really quite good!). The first linked story is from a different game line, but the rest of it is all Quar related.

Other than that, I've been spending a lot of time outdoors lately. We've gotten an instant dose of Autumn weather and my gaming has dropped off considerably. Aside from a round of DH the other night, I think its been 2-ish weeks or more since I've played any other games. I'm kinda hoping the lack of playing will reignite my interest (in much the opposite way that my near constant playing earlier this year killed it).

Wednesday, September 14, 2011



okay, this is kindova early post for me, but I'm rather enamored with my latest painted mini and I didn't feel like waiting till Thursday or Friday to post it (schedules suck anyways). So here it is, my first painted Quar!
To be honest, I don't know a whole lot of anything about the Quar or the games in which they're played. First there's This Quar's War which is company sized engagements & then Songs of Our Ancestors which I think would be a more appealing skirmish style (there's a nice little review of it here). I first found the Quar on Miniature Review when they posted the CGI Quar Short film, and have been kinda hooked on the minis ever since. I browse their forums regularly (though like most forums I rarely post), and debated for quite sometime about just what I would get. Then, right around my birthday, I ordered a handful on a whim.

Zombiesmith is a small shop, so it took several weeks for my minis to arrive. When it did the other day I found I was shorted one Royalist Rhyfler (what's pictured above), but the 'Head Zombie' responded within a day with apologies & the missing Quar is currently enroute to me. I don't know if I'll ever play the game (I showed a few friends the short film got the incredulous 'really?' response) But I'd like to get the skirmish version rulebook @ some point, along with a few more minis (just in case).

I mean just for the hell of it, who wouldn't want a little collection of seemingly overweight, bipedal, gun toting aardvarks (or anteaters?) who look like they're eternally fighting WWI? We all have minis on our shelves that we bought for no other reason than 'they look cool', right? I'll post the others as I paint them so stay tuned.

Also, in a continuation of my Monday rant. The esteemed Colonel Gravis has also just posted a rant on his blog that's in a similar vain to my own (though he is a bit more eloquent than I). Should you want to read it then you'll find it here.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Happy Monday...

Nothing starts the day better than the combination of google telling me that the 'auto save' isn't working followed by a browser crash that wipes out my almost finished Monday morning post.


Murl commented he other day that he was thinking of ordering the Heavy Gear Paxton army starter, and so I thought I'd paint another gear. Makes sense really. We only had a general idea of the rules when we stopped playing (damned real life interference) and now several months later we've probably forgotten what little we did understand.

This is a Mauler Bear for my WFPA Highlander squad (Dragoon squad to the rest of the Northerners). I've seen comments on the DP9 forums that point-for-point, the Mauler bear is probably one of, if not the worst gears in the game! The WFPA does use a lot of obsolete equipment though, so I suppose that's fitting.

The twin medium rocket pods are good anti-everything weapons, however they're woefully short ranged and inaccurate. Aside from machine guns, all it had was a light grenade launcher (and both of those are really only good at killing infantry). However the simple upgrade to a heavy grenade launcher seriously improves its threat level as its a fairly long ranged (though still inaccurate) anti-everything gun. Looks like all that I really need is a northern GP squad to flesh out the ranks and my little WFPA force will be complete (I'll put that on my 'to buy' list).

Going back to VOR, here's the last of my Infinity Line Kazak minis. Of the three that I have, I like this one the most. He has kindova 'Hollywood mercenary' look to him. I'm now out of infinity minis to paint so will have to p/u another blister of them as well (and yet again my 'to buy' list grows longer).

I've rather enjoyed these last couple minis. After so many years of playing 40k, its a nice change of pace to not just be painting yet another Space marine or Guardsman. I dunno. I'm wondering just what the future of 40k holds for me. My love of fluffy beer & pretzel lists seem to be getting continually crushed under the current mindset of 'THIS IS GOING TO DESTROY YOU!!!!' I mean, is it really necessary to have every list be either MC spam, Alpha strike, or fielding a Death Star unit (if not several)? Here, this unit will hit & wipe you out without you ever needing to roll a die.

Because that's so much fun right?

Everybody apparently loves that feeling because they all feel the need to field a comparable unit that does the same to their opponent, so everybody can enjoy the feeling of getting your teeth kicked in with no chance of fighting back in every game.

Yaaay, I so want to experience this every game...

Murl commented the other day that due to the 'net list' & tournament mentality that the game seems to be going in that direction whether we like it or not. True perhaps. Dunno, maybe I've outgrown the game or something. I don't really have any urge to sell my minis (various mini purges have left me with the bare bones of what I really like) but I also don't have too much urge to buy 40k stuff or even paint it (as I'm sure readers of this blog have noticed here of late).


Friday, September 9, 2011

Yeah, that looks more like a proper soldier...


Well I only managed to get one of the other two Infinity (turned VOR) Kazaks done (though the second is in progress). This guy's pose looks far more militaryish (I don't think that's a word) than the 'battle babe' that I posted earlier in the week.
As I said in the last post, I will be spreading these guys out among various squads in order to make for a more motley appearance, hence the roman numeral II (for the 2nd squad) on his base. I made his back pack a lighter shade of green (and the third guy's will be tan) to further the lack of conformity.

In the event that you're really interested in how the Kazaks are supposed to be used, go & check out the dicerolla. True, Papa JJ doesn't really know what he's doing with Infinity (yet), at least he's giving it a go, whereas I'm not even going to bother.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Battle Babe


As I stated earlier, I have no interest in the game Infinity (nor does anyone else locally) however I do like the minis & have purchased a handful for use in a possible VOR army. Whether or not that ever really happens, it does give me the excuse to buy & paint something different (an spares me of dealing with people getting their hopes up were I to paint a Warmahorde mini). Most of the minis I like are from the Ariadna faction, so if that game ever takes hold here, then I guess I'll already be set.

Anyways, I bought a blister of (3) Line Kazak minis via ebay and this is the first one. Its (sadly) one of the usual 'need to make her look as sexy as possible while wearing body armor & holding a gun' kind of models. Actually, of the three in the blister, this one I like the least. The others to actually look like they're supposed to be soldiers (as opposed to a recruitment centerfold). But whatever, I figured I'd paint her first to get her out of the way. The roman numeral 'I' on the back of her base denotes squad number. The army is planned to have four squads, which will come to 18 infantry models total. Plus the APC in the linked post above (although Secret Weapon Miniatures is working on an awesome 28mm wheeled AFV that I may get if it ever comes into production).

This week looks to be predominantly rainy, so maybe I'll be able to get the other two painted up for my late week post.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Hey, what's that little tank over there?

It's nothing, don't worry about it...


That somewhat infamous exchange is now something of a running joke in our gaming group. It was between myself & Neverness (who will no doubt comment when he sees this post) when he first saw my Forgeworld Cyclops speeding towards his fast approaching Ork bikers. Shortly thereafter, three bikers were vaporized and he asked 'okay, now what the hell was that?!?'

Its what I like to call '25 points of annoyance' yet is more commonly known as the Imperial Cyclops.
Long a fixture in my now sold 110th Ryza imperial guard army, this week I repainted it for use with my renegade guard. In the interim the cyclops has sat hidden away in a drawer, hoping (probably futilely) that it will be forgotten by my friends. So infamous is this little guy that I've had to change tactics & keep it (and it's operator) well hidden for most of the game, in some piece of terrain, laying in wait for the enemy's approach. Indeed, people have walked over to the table, pointed it out and told whomever I was playing to 'SHOOT THAT THING FIRST! JUST DO IT!'


However if all goes to plan, then around turn three or four my opponent will have one of those 'What's tha--oh shit! I didn't see that.' moments.

Hopefully it'll be in my turn where the cyclops can race forwards & kill something, otherwise it's promptly shot at & disabled or (on a roll of a '6' to glance/penetrate) it explodes! Some may call that a dirty trick, but @ 25 points is it? Using FW models & characters (with the exception of super heavies) isn't all that uncommon, and considering most people can't build a list without a 'deathstar' unit included, I would hardly call the cyclops 'dirty'. Perhaps I can get another opinion tonight when it makes its debut against some Tyranid MC spam.

For those who aren't familiar with it, the Cyclops is an IG fast attack choice. AV 10 all around plus an operator which is a lone IG grunt equipped with a lasgun (or in my operator's case, just an autopistol) & a radio controller. You can have 1-3 Cyclops per FA choice (I only have the one). So long as the cyclops is within 48" of the operator it may move normally with the exception of it may move within 1" of an enemy model. If it goes beyond 48", it stops & may not move again till the operator gets back into range.

Once you find the best place to stop (within 1" of something the enemy considers valuable) it explodes in the shooting phase & it does so like a demo charge, except it doesn't scatter and against vehicles the strength isn't halved as the hole is always going to be over the cyclops itself (the cyclops is then removed as it has been vaporized).

Of course if the enemy shoots & glances or penetrates it, the cyclops is automatically wrecked, no rolling on the chart. If the glancing or penetrating roll is a '6', then it explodes in the same manner as above, so it's best not to let this little guy near your own troops! If the operator is killed before it blows up then it basically becomes another piece of terrain, it can't even explode. So it does have it's limitations.

Alternatively, Col. Gravis has one which he uses to represent a demo charge for his veteran squad. That's a pretty good idea actually, except that for me this model has become a bit notorious. So putting it with a veteran squad (even if I were to repeatedly explain that it is just a demo charge and not an actual cyclops), would more or less be the death knell of that squad.

The cyclops is a cheap & fun little curve ball to throw out on the table every now & again though, and I highly recommend you try it out.