August 29, 2012

How do they steer this?

I got the Gun Carriage finished finally. I have been working slowly on it over the last week and it was becoming a little bit of a chore. I painted it in two stages. The horses and undercarriage were the first to get done. I glued these into place without pinning them and now I am thinking I should have pinned them. I guess they will stay attached to the base. I was suprised by how much metal is in this kit. I would have thought the horses were resin too. At least assembly was simple, there aren't that many parts to work with and I only had to fill a few gaps on the horses.

I think the blending worked out for the most part especially with the large flat sides of the carriage. The weathering from the top and the wheels doesn't match 100% as they were painted separetely and I decided to experiment a little. I had wanted to put some dried mud on the wheels which would have covered a lot of the weathering but instead I wasn't brave enough and left them as is. The best mix for the mud I have found involves using plaster (spackle) and if I screwed it up it would be really difficult to remove. So rather than do this with an expensive model I think I will experiment a little more with some other cheaper model. The weathering on top is similar to that which I did on my watchtower. It isn't as textured as the wheels. I still think it looks fine.

So does anyone know how the crew manage to steer this thing?


August 28, 2012

Angry Trees

I painted these a while ago but I forgot to post up a photograph. I really like the models.I painted them up quickly as they are fairly simple except for the bones and skulls. I hate painting bone and skulls, a hang over from GW I think. I came up with a fairly simple receipe though that works really well. I painted them bleached bone and washed them with a watered down version of Devlan Mud (GW) and then a watered down Gryphone Sepia(GW). I highlight this with bleached bone and white. Finally I gave it a brown glaze and it comes out really nicely. It is far quicker than the normal layering I use.

These gave me an idea for flags for my army. I haven't really been able to come up with a cool idea to use on my flags. I will make stumps I think in the same style as these. Simple but should look fine.

August 27, 2012

A devastated brush...

My experiments with two brush blending have continued apace. I am slowly making better progress but it is an uphill battle. I got this Devastator finished last week to get some more practice in before I began the Gun Carriage. The metals and other parts are left basic here as I really focused on the green. Again I managed to get the shading in fine. I went much more dark than I have down previously and I think it worked fine. It is three shades in total each occupying about 50% less space than the previous shade. Again the problems presented themselves when it came to the highlighting. I think I am doing it too quickly without enough intermediate stages. However adding all the stages brings me back to layering something I want to try to evolve beyond. I think I will pick up a Merc 'jack to paint with some different colours to see if that is helpful. I need to pick up a Bucaneer at somepoint anyway. I hope the local store has one in.

I am just putting the finishing touches on the Gun Carriage now. It is an awesome model. It isn't a Celestial Fulcrum but it still has its own charms. I only wish the two horses weren't identical!

August 26, 2012

Steam Roller - Ass Kicking

So yesterday saw me lining out with some friends against some of the best players here in Germany. My local club organised a Steamroller event and despite a smaller than expected turnout we had some great fun. My first round was against a good Cryx player who used Mortenebra. Uusally I find this a tough match up as I can't often deal with the armour easily. However my druids really were the stars of the game. In the first turn they pulled the Deathjack about 10" forward and allowed me to do about 80% damage to him, knocking out his cortex most importantly. Second turn they pulled Seether in while pushin back the rest of the force. Both the Deathjack and the Seether were destroyed in that turn and due to sprint I had nothing within his range. A perfect game for me really.

Things went downhill from there though. The next round was again against Cryx. 50% of the players brought Cryx. I popped down Kreuger and my opponent popped down Deneghra with thirty Mecanithralls. I managed to kill twenty six of them in one turn and both necrosurgeons but my opponent was really canny and pressured the scenario right from the first turn and I was never able to get on top. He won with a scenario victory in Outflank, Outfight, Outlast. It didn't help that I thought that Tornado was a slam effect and not a throw effect. I used it on my Warpwolf to try to help clear some threats and after I had cast I read the spell and realised what I had just done. I wasn't too happy.

Things continued downhill from there. Next up was Skorne and I used prime Baldur. I have not faced epic Morghul before and I was nervous going into the game. The scenario was Sacrifice and I felt I had a good chance at a scenario victory. However I pushed Bladur up and feated thinking I was safe. I was very very wrong. Despite the Archidon having massive wings I forgot it could fly and ignore my feat. I also forgot that Ghostwalk ignored my feat too. I was close to actually surviving as not much could reach me but enough did and Baldur went down. That was a fairly basic mistake so I can't blame anything but my own stupidity. It was still fun to play despite a quick loss.

Then I played some pick up games as we finished way earlier than anticipated. Of course I won these then! That always seems the way. I did get to face off against the newest incarnation of Asphyxious and wow what a 'caster. He really dominates the board and I imagine is great fun to play. Still two Warpwolves to the face are enough to get the job done usually! So there still are two rounds to play today. I will be right in the middle of the first game when this posts. I hope I can pull out some wins now that the pressure is off. Though it is the toughest field I have seen at a german tournament and there are no pushovers at all. There are some shots of the event from yesterday here if you want to see.

August 24, 2012

Friday Showcase - Ork Mekboy

I have a vague idea that I showed this model here on the blog before. I picked this model up as not only does he look awesome but he is pretty nifty in the game too. I was never 100% sure how the Kustom Force field worked but a cover save for everything sounded great. A lot of 40k tables I see don't have very much terrain. This fellow solves the problem by bringing his own. The other Mekboy models don't have the same attitude as this guy and I guess thats what finally sold me on the model. He reminds me a little of the last metal Dwarven lords for Fantasy. They oozed attitude despite a simplicity, a few more models like these would be appreciated for every game I play.

August 22, 2012

Butchery Time!

I decided to paint the Butcher. I wanted to leave him until last but I didn't fancy starting work on the Gun Carriage just yet and the Butcher was the only model I had assembled and ready for paint. I kept him in the standard 5th border legion scheme. I wouldhave liked to get a little more contrast with the armour but I wasn't brave enough to really shade him down. I will try it on a Devastator I have assembled here. I think I can really get it darker still and that can only be for the better. I still have to do the base as I haven't varnished him yet. All my Khador will be varnished at once and based afterwards. Maybe I can get a group shot once everything is done.

I have been wondering if I am using paint that isn't suitable for two brush blending though. The Butcher came out fine but on some other models I haven't been finding it very easy. I managed the shading easily but the highlights remain difficult. I use Vajello paints. The base colour is German Fieldgrey WWII. I shade it down with Charred Brown which is easy enough. I highlight it with Dead Flesh. With the shade I get a smooth transition without too much effort but with the highlight it is always a struggle and I seem to only luckily get the effect I want. Does anyone have advice on what type of paint it best for two brush blending?

August 21, 2012

Grayle Farstrider

I am disappointed with how Grayle turned out. He is mainly armour with some leather detailing. I thought I would get him painted to a much higher standard but I really wasn't able to get a good effect on hs armour. I checked him against some of the other models I have painted. Baldur for instance has really excellently done armour, in my eyes at least. I got some good contrast on the metal and the green recesses came out better. I am wondering though if the varnish I use is having an effect. On my older Circle stuff I used Testors Dullcoate, the old poisonous stuff! It really gives a great matt effect, especially on metals. Maybe this is why Baldur's looks so much better?

I am glad I finally managed to pick up Grayle. I have been eyeing him for a while in the store and I finally gave in and grabbed him last week. I don't as yet think he is that good in the game. He really seems to operate as a super solo rather than as a support piece. With a good charge and side step he can deal a lot of damage reliably to infantry. Storm Rager helps out a lot with this. Sprint then gets him out of trouble. I think that this leans heavily to one style of play and it is one that can be countered easily by a canny opponent. I will get Grayle to the table soon and see what I can figure out for him. I have no idea what a good list for him would be...

August 20, 2012

Backswing Brutes

I had two of the Demolition Corps needing to be finished. I haven't really been motivated to get them done. I need them for my Khador list and so yesterday I sat and got them finished. It was far easier than I remembered. Two brush blending is a lot quicker even though I make a good few mistakes. The large flat plates are really nice to work with. I am hoping that this means I will get the 'jacks done quickly. I haven't as yet added battle damage or done the basing. I am unsure if I really want to add the battle damage and I won't base them until I have them varnished.

I really like these in the game. Their MAT is high enough to reliably hit. Backswing basically gives you a reroll, though the errata changes this. Now you have to make the second strike even if there are no enemies within range. This can make for some difficulties when you are positioning them. I usually have Fury cast on them giving an effective P&S of seventeen. That is high enough to threaten 'jacks and 'beasts. They are slow however and as I use them as a counterpunch behind a wall of infantry I often don't get them into battle until very late in the game. This is okay but not ideal. It is good to have all points in the army working at the same time rather than having a lot of it sitting at the back doing nothing. Still if I can manage to attrition well with the forward elements of the army I can really dominate the end of a battle as the Demolition Corps comes into play without a scratch.

August 17, 2012

Friday Showcase - Ork Boy

I thought I would pop up a picture of a single Ork. I really enjoy painting these models as they are quite characterful and yet retain a simplicity. I haven't heard anything about the latest edition of 40k that would attract me back to playing sadly. I guess the game can be fun but fun in a different way than what I am really looking for. I have watched a few games in the local gamestore and from the outsied looking in it seems little has actually changed. I will still continue to paint my Orks though I doubt I will collect many more. I have a massive box of stuff to paint so I won't be running out of Orks for a long long time!

August 16, 2012

Winterguard ready for action

I had hoped to get the Winterguard unit finished yesterday. There was a little more to do on them than I had anticipated. I am getting close to having the full thirty five point list done now. The Winterguard are a massive part of my strategy. I use the list as a jam list. I slowly advance forward with the Winterguard in front. Behind them sits Alexia using the casualties of the Winterguard to build up some Risen. Generally a lot of effort needs to be put in to deal with theWinterguard allowing a lot of my army to advance unmolested. A full unit of Demo Corps, a Kodiak and the Butcher back all this up to add a good counter punch.

When I play against the Winterguard I have a healthy respect for them. They really pose a lot of difficulties unless your army is tooled to deal with the high defence. Circle doesn't come with a lot of AOE's, though the celestial fulcrum helps somewhat. Usually when I see Khador about to hit the table I use Kreuger. Having played once with the Wwinterguard I start to spot the weaknesses they have. They are slow which is a big one. Bob and Weave which adds two to their defence prevents them from running. Iron Flesh gives another minus one to speed. This means that they are often at their weakest during the first turn of the game. They have to run flat out in the first turn to be able to claim a good position for the second turn. Most often they don't have their buffs up. A good response to this for Circle is Bloodtrackers having prey on the Winterguard. Advance deployment helps as the unit has a short range. Usually you are close enough to get some shots in on the first turn. The problem is the second turn. Once the buffs come up there really is little to do until the Winterguard commit. I haven't got a really good response developed other than Kreuger as of yet.

August 14, 2012

The dreaded Manflu

The Manflu is a terrible illness. Most of last week I spent feeling terrible and having a tap instead of a nose. I didn't get much painting done but I at least got some reading in. I wanted to read A Feast for Crows again before I started with George R. R. Martin's latest book A Dance of Dragons.

Yesterday I was finally able to sit and get some painting done. I have had the Winterguard sitting on my desk for a while and I intend getting them done soon. I have a 35pt Khador list I would like to be able to field and they are a fairly large component of it. I continued with the 5th border legion scheme. I think it comes out fairly well, although my photography doesn't really do it justice. I am slowly improving my two-brush blending technique and while it is faster it is a lot easier to make mistakes with. I am also not really sure what the appropriate applications of it are. Large flat armour plates I can do but when it comes to smaller details I struggle and often go back to layering.

I will hopefully finish the rest of the unit today leaving me with not too many models to still have to do for the list. I played with it on VASSAL last week and you can see the battlereport here. It is a slow list to play but hopefully familiarity will allow me to build up some speed in play.

August 3, 2012

Friday Showcase - Ork Mob

Here is the core of my Ork army for 40k: a giant mob. I only painted twenty four but I definitely have the miniatures to bulk out the unit to its full compliment of thirty. I just couldn't have been bothered at the time in painting more! I have two mobs of this size and it seemed like enough. I have only fielded them a few times against a friends Silver Skull marines and the numbers became a bit superflouous at times. They all came from the Battle for Black Reach except the Nob. I picked up a Batalion box for some reason at one point and at least it gave me a few power klaws to use throughout the army. Right now these guys are occupying a shelf having not been used in three years, a shame really but I can't part with them.

August 2, 2012

Wild Druidess

Solos are great to paint. I think that must be the mantra of the blog. I have played without the help of a Wilder for far too long and I got one last week. I kept with the autumnal colours for this model but I wanted to see how the red might work as a more dominant element. I usually go for a warm brown but I wanted something a little different. She came out fine even if the combination of the red and gold look more like Skorne than Circle. I will experiment with the combination elsewhere in the army as I think it helps bring out the autumnal theme a little better. The camera did wash out the skin tones here almost completely. There is quite a lot of effort on the skin but it just didn't get picked up in the shot.

This Solo seems great and will fit into almost all of my lists. I don't know what I will have to drop but something will give. I usually play at thirty five points and points in the lists are incredibly tight. I have also been experimenting with getting some Bog Trogs into the list. Ambush seems really powerful and I wonder why it doesn't get used more.

August 1, 2012

Watchtower finally done!

It seems like an age since I started this project. Thankfully it is now completely finished. I really just needed to get my airbrush going to that I could do the weathering I wanted and after that it was simple. The green colour is to match my Khadoran scheme. Now they have something to defend at least!The colour somehow blecds in with the aged wood which wasn't what I wanted at all. I thought it might offer a better contrast when finished. It looks good, just different from what I expected. I did apply a 'filter' of brown over the green and this may have caused the blending. A filter is a very dilute wash with pigments that is worked after drying to simulate something like dust or dirt. I haven't really experimented much with it but I imagine it would be a very interesting technique to use on the colossal I guess I will soon be painting.

I thought that the tower might look a little boring in just the plain green and brown so I added this symbol to one of the sides. I cut a stencil from some stiff paper and used the airbrush to paint it on. I wasn't very succesful as the airbrush applied the paint more thinnly than I would have prefered. I was able to touch it up for the most part. It looked horrible before the weathering but now it looks just as old as the rest of the surface around it. I didn't draw the stencil as exactly as I should have but at least for next time I will know what to do.

To differentiate the entrance from the other sides better I added a barrel. You would think a door would be enough but adding a barrel always helps! I picked these up on a whim in a local games store and I like using them on terrain as it adds a little character. The cd base I was using doesn't fit snug to the walls of the tower so adding this filled up a lot of that empty space I think. I didn't weather the entrance side too much in case I add more stuff to it later. I doubt I will but it is a little plain. A shield or something on the wall might be nice.

If you want to see some of the WIP shots of my progress on this you can see them here and here.
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