December 29, 2015

Wyrd Stuff: Dead Doxy 2

The painting continues apace. As these were half completed an aeon ago it hasn't been too hard to get them finished off. I went with purple for this lady. It is another colour I hate. I guess though that the only way to improve it to continually expand our repertoire. The camera issue hasn't been resolved so the picture is a little poor once more. I have a Rogue Necromancy to complete still so you can expect him over the coming days. Beyond that there is a Punk Zombie to do still and a Death Marshal. I have been avoiding the Punk Zombie as I really hate that sculpt. Let's see if I am brave enough to actually paint him.

December 27, 2015

Wyrd Stuff: Dead Doxy

My camera work is getting worse and simply because I changed the room I am taking the photographs in. I will try to figure out a better way to take them in the future. I have had a few of Wyrd Miniatures products lying around only half done for a year now and with the holidays I thought it would e a good time to get them finished. I don't really know if I have ever used Dead Doxies in a game before but the models are nice so I picked them up on a whim. They are definitely fun to paint and I kept them colourful like the Rotten Belles I finished a long time ago. I wasn't able to keep the traffic light theme but blue is a good enough colour and I have been using it a lot recently. It is a colour I dislike painting as I can never get the blends to work the way I want. I am slowly improving that however.

December 21, 2015

Stormcast Triumvirate Completed

Three done and a lot more to go. I am actually starting to enjoy painting these more. The blending of the blues is a little annoying but it has started to go faster. It still takes an age to get a single model done. The sheer size of the models means I can only do one at a time as otherwise my paint mixtures would dry too quickly. I don't know if it really effects my speed but I am unaccustomed to painting single models like this for regiments and it really feels wrong.

I am really happy with how the bases are coming along. The ruined temple theme gives me good material to work with and here I did a small broken pillar. It is a little thin and I only realised after I had finished it. I don't really mind and it still looks fine. I might however bulk it up when it comes to doing it on another model. I am going to stop doing the smaller flag stones on the bases and go with larger surfaces before breaking them up. I think it is more realistic, especially when considering marble and of course it looks better. I have tried it on the other bases I have been preparing and it is an improvement.

December 16, 2015

Celestial Vindicators

Very slow progress is being made with my Celestial Vindicator Brotherhood. I haven't made any changes to the scheme and I dont intend to really. I do have a few decisions still to make. I want to work on my silver a little more to make it pop. I am pretty boring when it comes to silvers and stick with washes mainly. I think I could improve this if I went with a darker basecoat and then a wash, finally I would build it up as I do gold. Usually when I do this I don't get the results I really want. Practice is needed I think. I also need to decide what exactly is going to go on the left shoulder pads of these guys. I just can't seem to get a freehand scheme I like at all and it is driving me nuts. I may well go with the basic design on my previously completed model but I don't know. I shall have to admit that I am coming back to these guys in the future once I have figured a few things out.

December 15, 2015

A Year of Malifaux

It didn't seem like a busy year of gaming but while chatting post-game last week I came to the realisation that I have played thirty games of Malifaux this year. You can read a lot about them here. I even managed to play through two campaigns using the beta rules. Despite SAGA making a late resurgence it would seem that Malifaux has won out as the game of 2015. I am still really enjoying the game and the VASSAL module makes it really easy to get a game in. I probably played a slightly lower number of games of Malifaux in 2014 but I still guess around twenty. It also has to be said that this was with a very limited variance in crews and always against the same opponent. It is very intriguing as to why a game would be able to hold my interest for so long.

So what is it that makes the game so enjoyable for me? It is the asymmetric victory conditions I think. The game also rarely focuses on the killing of enemy models. There is a huge amount of replayability and often quite a lot of tension generated by this asymmetry. It is definitely something I would like to see more games embrace and I do believe that Warmachine is bringing out a system for this soon. That would definitely respark my interest in all things Privateer Press. I would definitely consider such a system as almost required for skirmish gaming at this stage and Age of Sigmar would benefit strongly from it. It does require a flexibility in army composition and by determing the Strategies and Schemes in Malifaux prior to building a crew allows this. It would have to be included in games featuring asymmetry and this is where I think Privateer Press will fail. I look forward to seeing what they come up with though.

December 14, 2015

A Desperate Escort

I have definitely been playing a lot of SAGA recently. I have managed the odd game of Malifaux via VASSAL also but my club nights are dominated by the early medieval period. We will probably move onto some Muskets and Tomahawks after we conclude this phase of the campaign. I need to consider if it worked out as I imagined it would and to make some changes to improve upon the gameplay aspects. I want to have weather factor into the next phase for instance. It is set in winter after all.The deployments are shown above. I wanted to use the river to split the Norman forces. With the positioning of the fords I could get my pigs back across easily and block the other ford to stop the Normans redeploying which is exactly what I did. The battle is the second in the Harrying of the North campaign. After the Norman success in scattering the bulk of the villagers defenders they set about scattering the herds and burning the food stores around the village. The defenders attempted to bring the animals under the shelter of the forest to the north but were intercepted. Once battle was truly joined I was outflanked completely. Retreating back across the ford did indeed slow the Normans but with some fast movement they circled by blocking force and surrounded me. I also gave away my cows far too easily and as such I was therefore always struggling. As the noose tightened I tried to force a hole in the Norman line which I almost managed. We were once again limited by the terrain selection of other tables in the shop. As we tend to start a little later than the other games we get the left overs and a few pieces we can scavenge from games in progress. The river turned out to be an excellent piece to use and made for an interesting encounter. The Normans ended up surrounded me and I had to attempt to break out along the line of the river. However I hadn't factored in a small unit of Hearthguard across the river. These duly thundered across the ford and forced my baggage to retreat out of the defensive position and then they were pounced upon.

December 9, 2015

The Last Halfling

I have had this model for quite a while. He was even painted. However when I found him hiding at the back of my shelves I decided that this halfling deserved a new look. I didn't even strip the old paint. I don't have a good medium to remove paint with anymore and while Biostrip 20 has been recommended I haven't been able to source any here in Germany. I painted him in Averland colours as there has been talk of replaying some events from the World That Was, centered around Waaagh Gorbad.

November 30, 2015

Duardin Auxillaries

These Duardin prove that I am unable to stick with a project for very long. I am not really sure why I started painting these but somehow I did. All I wanted to do was a sample model.

I have had these models for a very long time. I collected a Dwarf army for sixth that was composed primarily of these models. I kept all the enclosed helms and I had intended using them on a single regiment. They were by far the hest heads in the box and I wanted to make a really attractive unit out of them. I painted them up and then quickly replaced them once the next set of plastics for the Dwarves came out. Still for some reason they were never forgotten and on my last trip back to Ireland they wre retrived from the assortment of models there. I think the helmets are so evocative of Games Workshops Dwarves that I just had to update them. As to what I will paint next I am hoping I can continue with the Stormcast Eternals.

November 23, 2015

Stormcast Eternal

the first of my Stormcast Eternal Warhost is almost done. I really like the miniatures and their Greek/Macedonian style. I had wanted to get some as soon as the came out but with the move back to Germany I wasn't able to get anywhere near a game store. I was gifted these however and now I am finally getting to sit down to enjoy the long process of painting a functional army. This guy is my test model and while I am not 100% happy yet the basic idea is working for me.

I will sit down now and finish the rest of the regiment in the same scheme. I don't like the sculpting on the shoulder pad. it is rather uncharacteristic of GW miniatures as it is indistinct and hence hard to paint well. I have to figure out a way to improve that area when painting it. I also want to look at improving the silver areas of the hammer, maybe darkening them a little more. Also the base needs some more work with bits of foliage but I am happy with the contrast it offers the model.

November 16, 2015

The Final Batch of Maneaters

I often wonder why I bought two boxes of these. I didn't really need ten Ogres, especially as I was getting duplicate models. I did my best here to mix the duplicates up but with similar heads it is hard to make them very distinct. I sculpted a helmet on one of the models and I think it came out well, considering my meagre sculpting skills. Actually it came out far better than I thought it would considering that I actually needed to add ears also. I hadn't realised that the ears were sculpted on the body of the miniatures rather than the heads. It is the model on the right shown here. Beyond that I added a few teeth to other models and sculpted a few little details here and there on them. With nine of them done it is time to tackle Golgfag himself. I want to do some conversion work on the miniature to make it a little more imposing, we shall see what I can manage.

November 13, 2015

Harrying of the North

I started a short SAGA campaign with my usual opponent Steve last week. You can read his angle on the first battle on his blog here. I had a good game though it was an uphill struggle right from the start. I am not having much success with my Anglo-Saxons at the moment. I rely heavily on larger unit of warriors, usually in the of twelve models strong.>

The battleboard is very much focused on defensive abilities and while these are good, I can only use them once per turn leaving me vulnerable to a counter attack if I use them in the offense. As I am often presented with enough shooting to force me to move forward I don't have the option but to be offensive. I deployed to the left of the table in this game, a unit is actually further out to the left and is clipped off in the photograph.

I was flanked a little more quickly than I would have liked and in the centre I wasn't able to move as I wished as the space was too constricted and the Normans once again stood well off and shot me. They actually targetted my shooting troops before I considered targetting his and my numbers were reduced to just above ineffective. I was never able to get on top with the casualty rate and I went down 28.5 : 35 slaughter points in the scenario.

One very notable occurence was the rallying of the troops by Fr. Seward. He managed to stand up to a charge by Alan Rufus and his household guard alone and then drove them back. It would have been an unfortunate way for him to exit the campaign but miraculously he survived the onslaught of the Norman cavalry and lives to lead the defence in tonights game. The campaign represents the first week or so of the Harrying of the North. this phase of the campaign is centered around the village of Lundsby and the attempts of Alan Rufus to destroy the villages winter provisions.

In the year of our Lord 1170 King William unleashed his fury on the lands of the North. He had encamped north of York at the start of winter. With the turning of the year and the late arrival of the snows his armies were divided and struck out at the rebellious towns and villages. Alan Rufus was sent against the village of Lundsby and arrived in the first week of January. His wrath was soon felt across the area. Fr. Seward led the defence of the village. His stalwart faith drove off the rampagers but the cost in blood was great.

November 9, 2015

Second Batch of Maneaters

These are the second batch of Golgfags Maneaters. I don't know why I actually like these models, maybe it is nostalgia. They definitely aren't as nice as the current range of Maneaters but they have a charm of their own, quite reflective of mid-90's Games Workshop aesthetic. The one thing I really don't like about these models is the hunchback pose. I have modified them a bit mainly by putting the heads much higher on the body and filling in the cavity where it should be. It was hard to adjust the heads to the correct height and I think I made some of the Ogres a little too tall.

November 2, 2015

Classic Ogre Maneaters

I have had these for a very, very long time. I believe I bought them when they first came out. They languished on my unpainted pile during the intervening decades and finally they surfaced as I moved back to Hamburg. I decided to put them on round bases simply as I am most likely to use them in Age of Sigmar. I kept the paintjob simple and relatively fast. Red is the unit colour to tie them in together and I went for a pattern on the weapons to tie them in somewhat with my Forces of Destruction Orcs. Who knows they may see the battlefield sometime together? I still want to do the bases but as I haven't got the unit finished I won't worry about it much.

October 27, 2015

Sigmar Arrives

I finally managed to get a game of Age of Sigmar played when home in Ireland recently.
My hometown gaming group hosted a few games and I gladly took part. We played a scenario from the Quest for Ghal Maraz pack, I believe it was an ambush style scenario but the name escapes me. I played Ogres and because I had a much lower model count that the two other players I was the defender both times I played. First up I faced off against Dwarves. The army was fairly standard with a little bit of everything included. My opponent didnt really grasp the scenario that well and deployed in a line standing off from my army allowing me plenty of time to get into an advantageous position. He definitely approached the game as if it were just a new edition of Warhammer rather than a completely new game. I enjoyed the game though there is a lot of behaviours to unlearn that are tied into previous editions of Warhammer. I think having played Warmachine and Malifaux have helped a lot with that.

I am currently painting a test Stormcast model and based on that I might start an army for Age of Sigmar. I won't post my actual thoughts on the game here. I will reserve that for another post later. I am open to playing it a few more times with enthusiatic players to see what I really think of it. I will say though, so far so good. AS to rebasing my existing collection I am unsure. I don't know how often I will get to play as there seems a paucity of local players. It wouldn't make much sense therefore to rebase anything. Especially as I would have to buy a lot of bases in that event. The first force I would consider for this treatment would be my chaos army, the one I never finished.

October 21, 2015

Age of Sigmar Bases

I wanted to do something a bit more involved than my standard basing scheme for my Age of Sigmar bases. I still wanted it to fit with my older stuff so some thought was involved. What I finally came up with was a ruined temple. It fits fairly well within the setting. To make it convincing I got together some simple moulds for details.I am painting the stone in a marble effect. I have tried this out before with mixed success.

I want the bases to contrast well with the models that are on them and so a light colour works well enough and remains fairly neutral still.
I can get a lot more elaborate with the bigger bases but for now a stump is as exciting as it is going to get. I have to consider the best way to do fallen pillars and maybe even a tumbled statue or two. I will definitely need some better mould making materials if I am going to do that though.

October 19, 2015

A Prologue to the Saga

It is pretty good to be back living in Germany. Regular thursday night gaming is a big improvement over almost no gaming in Finland. Saga has really picked up in popularity here since I left. There were four games underway at the store when I was there. I think the relatively recent publication of the rules in German has helped with that. We played the Challenge scenario from the first rulebook. I dont really like the scenario as once again my Warlord ended up far closer to the enemies starting position that Steve's did to mine. add in the fact that his troops are mainly mounted and that leaves me with a lot of distance to cover quickly. I believe I once saw an amendment where both models are set up on the centreline six inches apart. I would definitely prefer that arrangement. I believe I was down six wonds by the end of the second turn and my troops were not in a position to do anything about that until the third.

I used my Anglo-Danes for this battle. the action got fairly intense as by the third turn and the halfway point of the game I hadn't managed to inflict a single wound on the enemy Warlord and he had inflicted half of mine. Troops were now engaged between the two warlords and it was going to be very tough for me to do anything to win. I tend to not spend my opponents fatigue especially on large relatively intact units and in this battle it was definitely a winning tactic. Initially I was losing large numbers of troops but I was emerging from combat with a single fatigue while the Normans were having theirs slowly mount.

In the last two turns I was able to spend this fatigue to actually wipe out units thereby inflicting more fatigue unto surrounding allies and even the Warlord. This rapidly depleted his bodyguard and allowed me to apply my axe to his head liberally in the final turn. I luckily managed to inflict seven wounds gaining me a narrow victory.

We only got a single game in but the pub was calling to us so I won't complain. The nuances of the battleboard are completely lost on me but we had fun. It actually inspired me to quickly get some more Warriors done for my Anglo-Saxons. Iwant to be able to diversify the construction of my warband and as such I definitely need more models painted.

October 15, 2015

The Saga Continues

I am back living in Germany now. My sojourn in Finland was completed a month ago and my SAGA in Germany continues. I am in the process of writing a campaign based on the Harrying of the North and as a preliminary to playing it I decided to get myself back in the gaming saddle so to speak. So last week I pulled out my Anglo-Saxons and faced off against me regular opponent Steve and his Normans.

The game was great but we both quickly realised that we have a lot of catching up to do with the rules and factions before we embark on a campaign. I narrowly won thanks to succesive volleys of fire unto the Norman Hearthguard. This whittled them down to an ineffectual level and allowed my hastily advancing warriors to engage decisely in the centre despite having to weather a storm of arrows and bolts. We will play again this week, tonight to be exact. I will be bringing out my Anglo-Danes to play just for some variety as once the campaign begins we will be locked into our respective forces for a good few battles.

June 10, 2015

Orcs, Orcs and more Orcs

I have been painting.... honest I have. The thing is I have been painting Orcs, lots of orcs and they pretty much all look the same. So really there hasn't been much point in putting up a post which would show all the same models over and over. Here are soe of my rank and file orcs finished except for shields and basing. I don't want to base them until I know what is up with 9th edition fantasy and I don't have any materials here in Finland to use. I am happy with the results but they take way too long to paint and I have little time to be painting as usual. Getting four done a week is excellent progress for me but basically all my free time at the weekend has to be devoted to painting which is annoying. I also painted another eight not shown here but they are for a different regiment which is much further along than the spear boys. Once I am back in Germany permanently I will base and photograph everything.

I stopped painting the Savage Orcs. They were turning out fine but they were boring as hell to paint. Instead I took out some very old Orcs, I bought them around 1998 I think. I cleaned them up replacing the damaged pieces of which there were few thankfully. I didn't seem to be too dedicated to the removal of all the mould lines back then so clean up took longer than anticipated. The paint job was terrible but not too thick so I could just paint over these guys directly. I hate having to strip models. It takes ages and is never too easy with plastic. I have another twenty eight of these to paint so I will be busy with them for the summer at least. I have the old metal command group that came with them originally too so I will have to get them painted up also. I can always get a few more Savages done as a break from these if I need it.

February 10, 2015

Laois Masters

I mentioned last week that I am attending a tournament at the end of the year called the Laois Masters. This will be its third year to be run. I can't guess what effect ninth edition will have on the format but the current composition rules are interesting and endeavour to have a lot more core infantry on the table. The scenarios are all based on Blood and Glory, the best scenario in eight edition in my opinion. The games are all 3000pts with no grand armies allowed. On top of that the rare and lord allowances are set at the 2400pt levels. Minimum core is set at 40% so 1200pts. That is a lot of core in any army and should mean that we see a lot more boots on the tabletop. More special also means a lot more possibilities for warmachines and elite troop types but I feel that should balance well with the increased numbers in general.

For my army it means I would definitely have to add at least another core regiment. That would be forty Orcs. That is a lot to paint but I had intended painting it anyway. I don't know if I mentioned it here before but I have one hundred and sixty plastic boyz. Onto that you can add forty Black Orcs and about forty Savage Orcs. The Goblins may be uncountable at this stage but I have one hundred and thirty of them painted and eventual plans to do more. I want to eventually get all of this painted and of course I would also need to add all the support elements needed. This is a monster project but as I have the models I don't really have an excuse not to paint them. The only distractions I see would be Circle Orboros models and to be honest I have enough of them already.

By the end of this year I indend to have a huge chunk of this army painted and bring it with me somehow to the Masters. Now transporting that many models overseas won't be easy but I can cross that bridge once I come to it. I have got to get the models painted first. I have been partaking in a few hobby challenges with some of the other participants especially painting commitments. I exceeded my January target by a good margin but I doubt I will get much done on my February target. I have said I would get another eight Savage Orcs done. I am currently in Germany divorced from any possibility to paint so time will be short this month. Hopefully I can manage it.

February 3, 2015

More Savages

Here is the progress on my bunch of Savage Orcs. These are slow to paint and it is going to be at least two more months to get them done. The flesh is the problem and a complete lack of time to paint. I am getting an hour late in the evening maybe two if I decide to get less sleep. That really isn't allowing me to make much progress.

I have altered the painting slightly to bring in some more contrast in the skin. It has worked but is subtle. The effort hasn't been much so I am going to keep it up. Green is easily shaded with purple and I have added it to some of the deepest shadows especially on the faces. Beyond that I have brought highlights up a little and with the fur I went with white as the colour where it drapes over the shoulder. It is much better this way. Eight done and that means one fifth of the regiment complete. It doesn't feel like much progress but I am slowly getting there. I haven't considered what to paint next, that will be in the far future sadly. It will also sadly be more Orcs, I have just got to get through them.

February 2, 2015

One Months Tally

I am going to try and keep a tally of what I have painted this year. Time seems to fly by and little progress is made, a tally won't keep me motivated but it will indicate how lazy I have been. Unusually I have an aim for hr I want done by the end of the year. There is a tournament, the Laois Masters coming up and I want to get my army ready for that. It is a three thousand point game with some extra restrictions and while they haven't been completely signed off on they are:
1200pts from Core selection minimum
600pts from Lords selection maximum
1200pts from Character selection total
600pts from Rare selection maximum

So that means that I need to get a lot of painting done in the next eleven months. That level of core is three Orc hordes and a smattering of Goblins. That is going to mean some long evenings sitting at the painting table.

As for January's tally, I managed eighteen Night Goblins and eight Savage Orcs, not bad but not enough.

January 26, 2015

Savage Orcs: old vs. new

I thought I might show you my previous painting attempts on these Savage Orcs. Guess which one is the old one? I painted them fairly simply over ten years ago. The skin was something like a Scorpion Green(GW) base coat, then an ink wash and finally a drybrush. The lizard skin cloth didn't have any contrast which it defintely does now. I am quite happy with the contrast between the orcs flesh and the cloth. These are sadly taking a while. It would be great to get them finished by February. I am making a trip back to Germany at the end of the month and I could potentially drop these off and gather some unpainted miniatures to paint. Not that I don't have some here to do but I could forsee getting verything here done and then having nothing at all to do. I am unsure if I want to do tattoos on the Savages. I might experiment a little and see if I can come up with something I like.

January 19, 2015

First Pair of Savage Orcs

Savage Orcs are next on the list to get painted. I bought these when I lived in England many years ago. There was a good second hand shop for miniatures where you could get some really great deals. A lot of my students paltry income was spent there on projects I still haven't finished. I painted a few of these when I got them but they were shelved relatively quickly in favour of something else. I think in this case my first Hordes miniatures. I painted them rather quickly mainly with some drybrushing on the skin and some tattoos to break it up. I will post some pictures of them before I paint over them.

I am happy enough with these two Orcs, I still think that there is room for improvement but as I have to do forty of these there is only so much I am willing to do
. The skin needs a little more refinement. The colour and tone is fine but getting a better defined muscles and facial features would be good. Aalso the fur is really poor. It doesn't have enough of a paintable texture to do much other than drybrushing and washing. I wanted to transition from a dark fur colour to a lighter one. I did that but I think it could have been done better. A lighter tone on top would give a better contrast. I am not changing it now but I will do on the future versions of these models.I didn't want to go with a grey stone for the weapons so I went with brown. I think that worked out quite well so I will definitely be copying that through the rest of the regiment. Again the bases aren't done. I can worry about that once I know if I need round ones or not. I really hope I dodn't need round bases...

January 15, 2015

Night Goblins finished?

Finally these sixty models are done. It was quite a slog towards the end but I managed to push through. I have refrained from finishing the bases as I may have to put them on round ones all too soon. Hopefully that doesn't come to pass, it would just feel wrong. Then again who knows? It could be great. I am pretty enthusiastic about ninth edition. While it will be a big change I don't think it will be bad. Warhammer needs a shake up, the fluff needs to progress desperately and be maintained in this progress. The armies are fairly static and boring especially if you have played since third edition. Very little has changed and to be honest it is boring to see the same armies hit the table game after game.

I don't know if I will ever need these sixty models. If the game is becoming smaller then larger regiments will probably be superfluous. Maybe it will be possible amongst veteran players to up the points to a level whereby the number of models are similar to before and the game still plays well. We will just have to wait and see. The next regiment up on the pianting block will be my Savage Orcs. I have about forty of these and I have been putting them on the long finger for quite a while. I don't have much more to do during the long dark evenings here in Finland.

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