Monday, September 30, 2013

I guess Stirland has a rodent problem...

Actually Stirland has a lot of problems, this one will just be added to the list, lol.

I've made a few changes to my WHFB Stirland army, namely in the removal of a few units. Originally I had only wanted about a 1k point list, but once I started Greatswords, I 'needed' more to make them effective. Which meant a bigger army, cause they have a high point cost (for a foot slogging human). Plus I wanted a cannon, which meant an even bigger army to fit both units in with the army percentages (such a stupid system of army building). Soon my 1k army damn near hit 2k before I hit the breaks on it.

WHFB has taken a back seat here locally, as most games other than 40k do periodically. Looking at my little horde of Stirlanders, I really just wanted that 1k list, or rather about 1250 points just to have a little bit of variety. Thus, some units are hitting the auction block. I sold the Greatswords to Bob, and my FAILcast captain, spearmen, and archers (the latter have failed to kill ANYTHING in all of their games) will go to ebay sometime this week.

Now, before Neverness starts lamenting that I'm selling my Empire army before he finishes his Orc regiment (not holding my breath for the rest of the army...), remember that rodent problem I mentioned? Well...

Because I don't already have enough to paint...

Like my Stirland army, Mordheim is indeed a gateway drug as I've wanted a Skaven army for quite sometime, despite my public denials to the contrary. Last week was a good week on ebay (selling wise), and so I picked up 2 island of blood skaven starter regiments before transferring the rest of the funds to my checking account. Half have spears, the others hand weapons and shields. Hopefully this week I'll add the same amount to bump them up to blocks of 40-50 after adding in the Mordheim minis. They will be the core of my army. After that, I'll need an army book to see just what I have and where to go from there to reach the 1k mark, where again, I intend to stop.

Characters I already have in spades thanks to my Mordheim warband. The exception to that being a BSB which I picked up for dirt cheap on ebay, along with a pack master for all of my 'not-so-giant rats'. Right now, my warlord and BSB are Stormvermin. I love those minis but don't have the $100 needed to buy 2 boxes worth for a block of 40 (the Skaven standard it seems). Likewise, the BSB's flag is kinda sad, but till I get an actual Stormvermin standard bearer (those bits were kinda pricey) he'll have to do. Not too inspiring of a BSB, but the Skaven lead thru fear and intimidation so it is no matter. He has decent armor AND a shield, so it is easy to see that he is actually a rat of some worth!

These will have to wait a bit to see some paint/assembly, as we're moving my GF into my/our house this week. Hopefully the dust will settle enough next week for me to paint up a few or something.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Brigada Graphic Novel


This card makes for a nice bookmark.
I'm generally not one to bother with comic books or graphic novels, but every now and again there is an exception, such as Enrique Fernandez's Brigada comic. I first discovered this little gem whilst perusing the blog roll on Nick Carver's Doodledump at some point. After checking out Enrique's blog I summarily started to check it fairly regularly...for awhile.

Impressed with the artwork, I ordered a copy via crowd sourcing, and to be honest I kinda forgot about it. It wasn't a kickstarter, so I wasn't inundated with stretch goals and updates begging enticing me to spend more $$$.  Both a good and a bad thing I suppose. Since at some point, Nick Carver stopped updating frequently (as happens with any blog sooner or later). This caused me to miss the updates of all the 'artsy' blogs on his page, which is how I forgot about Brigada.

Tuesday, I was reminded of my order when the book arrived in the mail! There's the odd misspelling or typeface glitch or two (I work in printing, so I see them where most people might not), but compared to say...the Dark Angels codex which has whole entries retyped in the errata, the editing is top notch! Especially as Enrique himself had total control of the project from start to finish. Now if only Nick Carver would just get his graphic novel going...

Here's a few Random pics from the book:

The cover art.
Ooh...pretty pictures!
My name ought to be in the backers list...didn't see it though. Of course trying to read all thru that started to make my eyes hurt, so I could easily have missed it.
In the package it mentioned a volume 2 is in the works, odds are I will order that one as well.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Grymn Walker WIP


Just a short post today.

I skipped out on gaming this past Saturday in lieu of a local music festival (torrential rain be damned). Much fun was had, enough so that my GF and I just lazied away yesterday. Thus no painting or the like happened either. However I do have one little item to show you, my WIP Grymn Walker:

I painted the rear stowage like they were the pilot's own, as in the Grymn equivalent of a Coleman cooler and Craftsman toolbox rather than containers of military origin.

Despite the Winter colors of the Grymn Troopers, the large white areas on the walker were kinda annoying me. Its just looked too bland. So I ran the Necron Decals up the center of front and up over the top, which broke it up nicely. Need to ink it and dry brush it a bit before adding the gun-arms on. Its coming along nicely I think.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Customer Service at its finest!


Just wanted to give some shout-outs to two of the smaller companies that I like to buy from. As anyone can tell here of late, my gaming attention is no longer held solely by GW and its laughably high prices (in the remote chance you want to argue that point, first go to their 'one-click collections' for SMs, just look a the prices, and yeah...shut up!). As such, lots of little side projects is where its at for me, so much so that I really don't have a 'main project' anymore. For example this week's hobby time was split up amongst my Grymn, Battletech, Bombshell minis (see below), WHFB,  40k and Federation Commander.

Anyways, onto the shout-outs.

First up, some ways back I bought a pair of resin/metal vehicles from ZombieSmith for use in Bolt Action. One however, the Crusader light tank which I intend to use as a Sherman Firefly had tracks that were badly mismolded and I emailed them about it. Expecting a response in a day or so, I instead had an apology inside a half hour! Chatting back and forth with Josh @ Zombiesmith, he said they'd get right on it. Cool, life was good. So I shelved the tank as the Quar have already taken over WWII Europe given my lack of opponents (i.e.: Rob gave up on it, and Screech still doesn't have his Germans built).

Here it is prior to any conversion additions (which includes the firefly barrel at its right).

A fair bit of time went by with no tracks in sight and kinda annoyed I was about to email the Zombie when I instead was emailed by him with the following:

New tread mold is done and yours are cast. I will get them out tomorrow or Friday!

Hardly a lick of flash on them!
Holy Crap! They remade the molds before making me new tracks! How often does that happen? Reminds me of Screech's horridly cast Medusa, and his refusal to send it back as he knew the replacement would if anything be even worse.  As such the new tracks arrived yesterday and as you can see they look just fine which will move that kit up in priority in my ever-changing model queue.

Another of my favorite little mini companies is Bombshell Miniatures, creators of my Grymn's little HlPr Bots (3rd pic down). When I made my initial order, i was tempted to order a little monkey holding a flintlock pistol that they make. Not having anything to go with it though, I decided not to. However with the Dwarven cannon gifted to me by Necron Bob, that's no longer a concern. The Dwarf Cannon looks like a naval gun to me, so its only fitting that the Gun-Captain has a little monkey as his first mate!

Will need to re-prime this guy, but he doesn't have enough paint on him to threaten a loss of detail.
I also 'ordered' a free PDF preview of Counterblast, their forthcoming miniature skirmish game in which they'll be having a kickstarter for next spring (and I already want that spaceship they're working on for it!).  In appreciation of that, there was not only a hand written thank you on my invoice, but another FREE HlPr Bot thrown is as well, nice! The Grymn now have three of these little guys, and as you can see below, the newest one is already based like the others.

Aww, cute little robot...
Of course Bombshell always includes a freebee sticker or two (much like Hasslefree always sends free candy in their shipments). This time however in addition to the free bot and sticker, I also got a promotional Counterblast bookmark (convenient as I bought the Best of Hammer and Bolter Volume Two yesterday), and a promo card f one of their 'babes' and the aforementioned monkey. Sure this is all advertising-type of stuff, but still nice to receive. I mean how often does GW send you free a ANYTHING when placing an order? 


Free Stickers would no doubt have the stockholders marching on Nottingham, burning torches and pitchforks in hand...

Okay, so maybe its marketing at its finest?
Along with the gun-monkey, I also ordered what they call a 'Squidman' for no other reason than the mini amuses me. More like an Octo-Alien in my book, I'm not sure just what I'll use it for, if anything. That said, I painted it up last night just for shits and giggles.

I don't speak Octopus, but I believe that gun translates into: 'Hey you! Get the hell outta my ocean!'
Anyways, once you're tired of crying about GW's prices, and the abysmal Cen-turd-ians (a name coined by Neverness), give some of these other mini companies a look. Cause there's all sorts of other cool stuff out there than just what's in the 'mainstream' of mini-gaming. 
Main stream of mini-gaming...heh, now there's an odd concept to ponder.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Kill 'em with fire!!!


The following is just something I came up with whilst bored last week. Its the background for a WHFB 'Bright Wizard' that I don't yet have a model for, though I do plan to get one at some point...

Infernicus the Lamp Lighter

Copyright of GW
The providence of Stirland has always been something of a backwater. Beyond the walls of the capital city of Wurtbad, efforts to maintain even the illusion of civilization have always been a difficult prospect. This has long been one many problems plaguing the far flung town of Leichberg, especially given its close proximity to the accursed Haunted Hills. Aside from building strong walls and hiring men to guard it, one method of constructing that illusion of civility is to keep the lights of the town burning bright thru the darkness of night.

This important task falls to the lowly lamp lighter. However the lamp lighter's toil is one fraught with danger. Alone on the darkened streets of Leichberg, with no one about other than those bent on thievery and mischief, the lamp lighter is often easy prey. Indeed he's seen as an enemy of the criminals of Leichberg, for he robs them of their protective shadow. Worse still, he is night-blinded by the very candle in which he illuminates the town's street lanterns. Leaving him unaware of an assailant until it is too late.

Thus lamp lighters are few, if at all. Suggestions have been made to employ the town's garrison to provide escort. Yet it is the garrison's so-called 'guards' who are most often accused of the aforementioned thievery and mischief. Avoiding the town's fortified walls and barracks by necessity, the lamp lighter walks instead the desolate streets of Leichberg till the first hint of dawn. Tragically it is left to only this solitary, and often short lived soul to stave off the terrors of night.

However the Lord of Leichberg found an ingenious solution to the lamp lighter's problem whilst solving another at the same time. Infernicus, the city garrison's old, decrepit (and some would say: 'not-so') bright wizard had become quite the thorn in his master's side. Primarily thru his insistence that 'one of his age was beyond need for further study of his order's spell craft.' Only to later be found lost in his scrolls, frantically trying to recall any spell of inflammatory use when called to assist in the town's defense! It seemed that other than in times of war, there's little need for a bright wizard's magics in such a place as Leichberg.

Killing two birds with one stone, Infernicus, at the order of his Lordship is now employed as the town's lamp lighter. His need to light fires on a nightly basis, even if only small flame upon a lantern's wick allows him to maintain mastery of at least one spell. Now he'll be theoretically prepared when next comes the call to arms! Furthermore, few are willing to rob a muttering old wizard as he wanders the streets at night. A few words cast in a moment of fright and his would-be attackers will see themselves quickly set aflame!

Wandering the streets each night, Infernicus now weaves an always varying path of flickering light throughout the town. His vigil maintains Leichberg's nightly visage of civility, whilst he memorizes his spell keeping, and sometimes assists the constabulary via the spontaneous combustion of the odd thief or two.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

To boldly go, where everyone has gone before...


My buddy Rob has been trying in vain to get me to play Federation Commander for quite some time now. Its a newer, more stream-lined game than its predecessor: Star Fleet Battles. That said, it still looks like accounting disguised as a game. It has 2 scales, one for just 1 v. 1 ship duels, and an even further stripped down (basically ships stats and point costs are halved) version to allow for fleet actions. Finding myself without something to read during lunch last week, I downloaded the quick start rules and gave em a read thru.

Now, for anyone who's read my blog for awhile now, you'll know that I don't understand rules well just by reading them, I need to play the game to really figure it out. Thus my 2 read throughs really didn't accomplish much. It strikes me as a sort of resource management game (that resource being the ship's power), but I have no clue as to build a fleet (if going that route), or if there are options for better skilled crews, etc.. The rules are spread all over hell's half acre which is littered with PDF updates called communiques, scenario packs, websites, and more. To anyone looking to start the game, this alone makes for quite a turnoff.

Another issue is the background of the game. Being geeks, we've all watched Star Trek at some point, right? Right. This game is based on 'The Original Series' which is always referred to as 'TOS'. Of course that's not defined anywhere and required a google search to explain. The confusion just gets worse from there. The designers of Federation Commander don't seem to have bothered with any background fluff of their own that I can see unless its included in the vast array of scenario packs which require purchase.

For example:

Amarillo Design Bureau's minis are kinda mediocre in quality, but cheap which is what I was looking for. Thus  a mis-mold became battle damage as can be seen on the saucer section.

On a whim, I bought the above ship via ebay. $10 with shipping, figuring worst case scenario it'll look good on the shelf. Its listed as the 'New Light Cruiser'. However after several days of Easter-egg hunting I've determines that its a Kearsarge class (link removed as it won't work...). Star Trek's fluff, canon and otherwise is all over the place, incessantly conflicting (frequently on the same website(s)), and as stated, Federation Commander makes little to no effort to even bother with its own fluff at all. It just lists the ship above as the new light cruiser (as does Star Fleet Battles, though that also mentions that there's roughly a dozen variants of the class as well). I did find it listed by name on the cover art of the Romulans attack on Memory Alpha which has most of the canon Star Trek fluff, and found this on another wiki that matches the description, so after a week or two, I can finally confirm just what ship type I bought (aside from its in game, generic stat card).

As an aside, this background fluff exercise has given me a whole new appreciation of just what is freely available for 40k. Star Trek on the other hand seems to spend most of its time contradicting itself. For example read this page on how the Oberth class has appeared in various episodes/movies, and is invariably depicted as entirely different sizes. No to mention the depth of detail in which this has been Aesthetically though, that's probably my favorite star trek ship type even if the lower hull looks to be entirely inaccessible without a teleporter.

In any case being a gaming geek, there's always a temptation to buy more minis. Even if I don't like the game (and prospects still aren't very good on that). Most likely a blister of 3 Burke class frigates (again, something of a nightmare to figure out what they are named aside from the generic term of 'frigate'). Sadly there's still no fluff that I can find about the ship type capabilites other than physical descriptions. But having 4 ships total would allow me to try the fleet scale, or worst case have a balanced 1 v. 1 frigate duel (training mission anyone?). Plus, all four of the ships with shipping costs included would be about the same as the new SM captain (which I don't want another model of) and would be the entirety of my investment in this little boondoggle.

I had hoped to apply the decals I made onto this last night, but my crappy printer can't print legibly at that small of a size. So I need to increase them in size a bit and just hope they'll still fit onto the ship...

I have no interest in the other races' ships, nor the larger ship types as the little ones already look too convoluted, for example take a look at my Kearsarge (fractional power...wut? lol!). All those boxes remind me of the old Epic Imperator Titan damage chart! Besides, they're 1-piece minis, which means I don't have glue together unpinnable heavy saucer sections and engine nacelles via their tiny connecting parts/sections.

So there you have it. I'll give it a shot (no Rob, not this weekend, instead I'll be trying out my new Spess Mahreenz codex), but I'm not hoping for a lot as I'm not expecting a lot. I'll give the quick-start rules another read as well, but sadly I still don't think it'll help all that much in my understanding of the game...

Monday, September 9, 2013



Can ya guess the age???
That word was the greeting for Neverness when he arrived at the FLGS for Saturday Night's gaming. Ya see today is his birthday and Red Bird had been planning the party for most of the summer. Or at least how to achieve total surprise. EVERYONE was in on it, and somehow we managed to keep it all secret!

I had tried to get one of the custom sculpted cakes, but that proved to be something of a nightmare. In the end I just baked a red velvet cake and our friend Rob decorated it (he owns a DQ, so decorates cakes all the time). It all worked out though as the icon on the cake came straight off of Neverness' blog (which seemed to surprise him as well)!

Here comes the pain...

After cake and presents game night went on as per the norm, and my GF & I teamed up with 1k each of my Eldar and her Fem Fa'Tau (which worked out like a split force org), vs. Neverness' ancient Ultramarines and the appropriately enough, the old SM codex. We played the Emprah's will scenario, with the short table edge deployment.

Bringing in his new decade with a bang!

 Neverness took a bucket load of photos, so will probably do a battle report. So I'll just post the one highlight above. Kushial gave Neverness a nicely painted, metal Ultramarine dreadnought however as you can see above, the Fem  Fa'Tau were not impressed, and on turn one decided it was 'First Blood'.

Another highlight of the game was a the various points where my Eldar were in close range, and paying the price for it. Whilst determining damage to my units, behind me I heard my GF mutter more than once: "I'm gonna fuck that shit up next turn...". lol, awesome!

Now why don't you all go and wish Neverness a good one!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Starting a few little 40k side projects...


Check any of my linked posts on my Storm Wardens and you'll quickly note that all of the minis in that army are old. Indeed most are the 2nd ed. starter box mono-posed marines. Whilst kinda boring, all together they kinda work fine from an aesthetic point of view. I'm even looking to get SM bikes in lieu of assault marines, as again, the bikers are essentially all in the same pose.

I do however have a squad of marines that are all made from multi-poseable parts. They've been around the block, and all have been stripped, partially disassembled, reassembled, and back again. In general, they just look like hell. I tried using them as Sternguard for the Wardens (which are known as 'Inheritors'), but they looked so screamingly different that it didn't work at all for me. So they've sat on the shelf collecting dust, until now...

A friend of mine is starting his own Mechanicum themed fan-dex, and in asking for help someone posted a link to the Angry Marines (that's not a work safe link there folks...). I'd forgotten about that home brew chapter, and reading thru the hilarity of it, I thought why not use my small contingent of multi-posed marines for them? Thus I ordered a few bitz needed as my supply of CCWs has long ago been depleted.

As an added bonus, it'll now be 'fluffy' for me to scream obscenities at my opponents while we play, lol!

Sure its only a base coat, but its a start. Rather than the screaming bright yellow of the Imperial Fists, I'm just using the Averland Sun (or whatever its called) base paint, more of a mustard yellow. It'll save me from needing 15+ coats of yellow to fix a mistake made with any other color.

Fan-dexes aren't universally accepted, so I'll use the rules for Space Puppies. Starting with Blood Claws, as Angry Marines can't hit the broadside of a barn, and just want to get into HTH combat! Give em' a Wolf Guard Battle Leader as the small allied contingent doesn't require a full Captain, and will throw in a Lone Wolf for no other reason than Neverness' Lone Wolf is always a thorn in my side, and this seems like a good opportunity to return the favor! Despite just being base coated, I couldn't resist trying my hand at painting the shoulder pad icon, and it came out reasonably well I think.

Quick! Get the Psychic bug spray!

Not forgetting the Exodites from my last post, I now have a platoon's worth of Psychic tokens. Most just have the power written on in pen till they're painted properly. But it gives me options for rolling 3 of the same of all of the Warlock powers (well, only 2 for Destructor), plus any of the Farseer's powers.  They ought to paint up quickly so long as the Angry Marines or whatever else doesn't distract me.