January 27, 2016

A Second Step into Frostgrave

I completed my second game of Frostgrave last week and the system is slowly growing on me. I can definitely say it is fun. We are playing a campaign, you can find my opponents views here. The demands on a terrain collection that the game makes are huge but thankfully we are playing via VASSAL and as such we can more easily create 2d maps. The Silent Tower was the last scenario. Here there is a central tower containing the special teasure that is flanked by two further smaller towers. These provide the only access to the central tower. The towers represent a null zone where no magic works. As we only play on a 3x3 board this made the layout and rules quite impactful. I got pretty luck and managed, despite taking out my own Wizard and having his apprentice soon join him, to win the game. A roll of a twenty on a shot without the critical hit rule being in effect took out the enemy wizard at a critical point levelling the playing field. Also pushing the Thief carrying the special treasure off of the tower and therefore splitting the attention of my opponent really helped. I liked the fact that despite being hammered in certain areas a decision like trying to push that Thief off the building were possible and it made for a really cinematic game.

I came out of the game having gained two levels bringing my Wizard to level four. My opponents Necromancer is sitting on level six which isn't unbalancing anything so far. He is definitely pushing his health stat higher which is a good policy and will eventually prevent things like the one shot kill that was so effective in the last game.

My spell list is currently:
  • (8) Absorb Knowledge
  • (8) Push
  • (11) Write Scroll
  • (8) Telekenises
  • (10) Fools Gold
  • (9) Heal
  • (22) Timewalk
  • (16) Brew Potion
You may be wondering at the choice of Timewalk. I took it simply so that I could put it on a scroll, if I ever manage to write one. Finishing the end of the game on the board is a difficult prerequisite to meet it would seem.

My warband currently consists of:
  • Unferth Wizard Deamon in a Bottle
  • Wealhtheow Apprentice Healing Potion
  • Hengist Tracker Belt of Animal Repellance
  • Wiglaf Ranger
  • Hrothmund Ranger
  • Sigemund Treasure Hunter Explosive Cocktail
  • Aeschere Treasure Hunter (Misses next game)
  • Sheafson Thief
  • Hrethel Thief
  • Breca Apothecary
I also have a few things stashed in my Library Base. I don't think the library is really an effective base of perations but it does fit with the sigilist theme and I suppose a 5% chance of generating a new grimoire and potentially a good spell is worth it. I do think I will end up purchasing a few grimoires over the course of the campaign. It is slightly too hard to get useful ones as they are generated randomly. I am quite happy I have recieved Enchant Weapon but it is useless until I can start embedding those enchantments something I might aim to buy soon.
  • Giant Cauldron
  • Enchant Weapon Grimoire
  • Mud Grimoire
  • Miraculous Cure Grimoire
  • 380gc

January 25, 2016

Bloodbowl Ogre

My random painting continues apace. This time I pulled out an Ogre from the depths of my lead pile. I recently brough two of my Bloodbowl teams to Germany as some mention of a league at the local club had been made. My humans are painted but I always like to play with a Big Guy on the team so I got this Ogre out and painted him in one sitting. As he was previously base coated I didn't have too much to do. I am also hoping to see Bloodbowl get rereleased and I want to have a team ready to go just in case it is.

January 21, 2016

Railroad Terrain

Railroad terrain looks great on a Warmachine or Malifaux board and despite the fact I don't play those games offline anymore I still want to get these pieces painted up. These railway pieces have been lying around in my cabinet for a long time and so I pulled them out and finished them off. This piece represents a flood relief section. I am not sure how accurate it is but I think breaks in the raised bed of the track are made to allow floodwaters to pass through rather than have them erode the bed. It also offers some good tactical opportunities. The bridge section is wide enough to allow a Heavy Warjack to move along it.It is important that the piece is as fully playable as possible and I think I achieved that.

I should have done the weathering a little different. I think the salt method I have done on other projects would have worked better. This is fine and I am not going to change it but next time I will use the salt method. I need to put some vegetation on these pieces still but I am lazy at the moment and as I won't be playing with them soon they are fine to go into the cabinet. When I come eventually to use them I will get the flock out.

Currently I have three foot long sections completed and I will need a fourth as the railroad does have to cross the board. I am not sure though what to do for the fourth piece. I have been thinking of a shed sitting over the track. I have also been thinking of a tunnel but building a cliff face has kind of put me off. I have thought about building one before as a sort of table dressing, something to sit on the edge of the board and look nice. The main problem is storage space for something like that. There is no way it could be small and I already struggle to keep my gaming collection in a somewhat organised state. I am however going to build a railway station.

January 19, 2016

A step further into Frostgrave

I played my first campaign game of Frostgrave last week and my second is coming up tonight. It was fun. I still hold a few reservations about the game but more on those later. The game played far better than the first. Mainly because we understood the rules a lot more and how the various interactions work. The nuances of group activations still escape me but I assume the main tactical benefit is derived from support in combats. We also were slow to take advantage of pushes in combat. I imagine they are an interesting rule to interact with. Also forcing combat hasn't quite worked as we thought it might. We have played it two ways now and we are not sure which is correct. Firstly the intention seems to be in preventing an enemy model moving past and engaging something behind. Effectively it allows someone to protect an area. However what happens if you begin within that inch? Can one simply move away? Can they circle around an opponent. I believe that they can move away as long as they do so directly to begin with. I don't think they can circle the opponent. Being able to move away makes sense and interacts well with the combat push idea. However it isn't clear from the rules if this is possible.

As to the negative points we hate the Critical Hits rule. While it is optional we started off using it as we were told that most people did. It just doesn't work in my opinion. As we move through the campaign we are not going to continue using it. Leap is the next bone of contention. It is simply too powerful and I don't see any reason not to have it. It would seem, in my admittedly small time spent playing, to be the most powerful spell in the game. A 10" move disregarding all penalties in a game supposedly packed with terrain and where the main win condition involves moving slowly with treasure off the board. That disadvantages any side without the spell severly. Its application is just too wide and far too powerful.

Finally the continuing story of my struggling Sigilist:

January 18, 2016

Celestial Vindicators Liberators

There is nothing as good as a bunch of finished miniatures. I am pretty happy with how these Stormcast came out and I think the colour scheme of the Celestial Vindicators was a good choice to base mine upon. I think the more muted tones suit the models better too. While I haven't seen that many other painted Stormcast models I think the metallic ones aren't great and those with a more primary colour as the dominant colour are worse. I had considered doing mine in a darker copper scheme but I am glad I didn't despite the fact that they would have been much faster to paint. I might keep the copper scheme for my upcoming Khornate force.

January 15, 2016

A Foray into Frostgrave

Somehow I managed to start yet another fantasy system. this time it is Frostgrave. Owen from Farfarawy.org modified a VASSAL module to allow us to try the system out remotely. As it is relatively simple we were able to get a game done without too much work being done. First off I like it. The game is characterful and interesting. The rules are straight forward if not always intuitive. What I don't like is the general lack of polish on the game. Some spells are insanely powerful for a relatively easy casting value. Leap is a prime example. As we play on a three foot board a ten inch move covers quite a lot of distance. It makes it very easy to tae treasure off of the board. Also the optional critical hit system is best neglected. We tried it in our game and it removes some of the tactical options as you always have a 5% chance to obliterate whatever you are fighting. All that said I am looking forward to the upcoming campaign and here is an extract from my Sigilists journal:

January 13, 2016

Celestial Vindicator Liberator Prime

Finally this model is complete and the regiment is too. I will take some group shots tomorrow and post it up on Friday or Monday. The fact that there is a little more gold on this model actually made him faster to paint. I am hoping that this will make the Paladins quicker to paint too. I haven't checked out their armour much but from memory it is more ornate. However I think I will paint the Prosecutors next. I am not looking forward to the wings however. I haven't decided on a colour for them but I think I will go with white shaded with grey. The models have enough blue on them that I don't think they need more and I want to keep the sky colour theme going so grey is definitely within that scheme.

I don't like the purple on this models plume but so far I haven't figured out what better colour to use. I felt that the purple would be a homage to the dawn but I haven't captured the colour I wanted. As I mentioned previously I hate purple and I will have to experiment more to get the shade I want I think. The base is hard to make out here as the camera insists on washing it out at the moment. As the Liberator Prime models are standing on rocks it makes them hard to merge into the basing scheme I am using. I think I managed it here but it is going to be hard with the Prosecutors and Lord Celestant on Dracoth. I am not sure how to approach those bases just yet.

January 7, 2016

Another Vindicator

The fourth is complete and the end is in sight, for this regiment at least. Again nothing special here beyond what you have seen on the previous three. I still can't decide upon the shoulder pad scheme and I haven't even attempted to improve the hammer head. It will come eventually but now it is feeling good just to get these to this state of completion. You can expect the Prime next week.

January 4, 2016

Wyrd Stuff: Rogue Necromancy

The Malifaux painting spree continues and I got the Rogue Necromancy finished. He isn't the greatest model ever produced but I do like him still. Painting him was easy enough and surprisingly I enjoyed it. I can often find painting models a bit of a chore and it takes some determination to actually sit and complete them. Why this is I can't really say. I used to absolutely love painting but now it doesn't hold quite the same charms. Alot of it depends I think on the quality of the miniatures and there is nothing worse than having to paint something that is poorly sculpted or cast. I am continuing with my Stormcasts over the next few weeks. Hopefully I can churn out a few more of them.

January 2, 2016

Witchfate Tor Part 1

I bought this model at the same time as the Dreadstone Blight. I pretty much instantly regretted the decision as I bought them without paying any attention to the pictures. Once it arrived I realised that they are more or less the same model with an additional layer on top.I put it together last year but didn't do much with it. I decided the other day that leaving it on top of my display cabinet gathering dust probably wasn't getting the best use out of it even if it is an impressive dust magnet. With that in mind and the strong possibility of an Age of Sigmar campaign coming up in the next few months I decided to get this piece done. I will approach it a level at a time working from the top down. I went with Averland colours as that represents my opponents colour scheme and offers a decent contrast. The darker stone work had already been painted so I went back and painted a lighter stone colour. So far this is what I have managed. Only three more levels and a base to do, that can't take too long right?
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