Sunday, 21 August 2016

Quick update: How's that Tale of Gamers Challenge going?

Well, it's not terrible!

Where I wanted to be, with one weekend to go, was to have all the Forsaken assembled, and half of them painted, and be going into next month's assembly.

We have eight out of ten Forsaken assembled, and five are mid paint. Five of next month's Marauders are assembled and ready for undercoat.

I am tempted to do a little bit of a swap, and finish off the five Forsaken I'm mid-way through, but paint the five Marauders as the other half of this month's progress. The Forsaken sculpts are pretty detailed, and there's a lot of fiddly detail to deal with.

I think I'll just see how I go next weekend.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Guest Blog: Alec: Painting an army in a week, part 1

In a new thing for the blog, I've invited a guest blogger, Alec, to write a piece. He was giving me some friendly ribbing about how slow five months is for a Tale of Gamers challenge, and mentioned he was painting a similar sized army much faster. I felt it was only fair to highlight his pain and suffering as he attempted this.
- The  Responsible One 

So, when I mentioned to TRO that he was being too generous in getting a thousand points of Age of Sigmar onto the table by counting in months and not days, he asked if I wanted to stick some of my current challenge onto his blog. "Why not," I thought, "it would be kinda cool". The aim was simple: get a thousand points of Age of Sigmar Dwarves onto the table of Warhammer World in a week!

Why a week?  Because I am indecisive, I was going to run some High Elves, then maybe I could do Lizardmen right?  Oh but Dark Elves look cool too!  Maybe just paint up some more Chaos as I have at least half a realms worth still to go... Ooooh and Greenskins, I have a few of those still laying around needing paint on 'em to finish painting the collection...

 Anyway, by the time I decided, I had a week - in amongst the other stuff I needed to do, like pack, spend a day travelling and so on. So less than a week really! On the Sunday, exactly a week before I had to have them ready, I had about half the army ready to be undercoated, and a little more because it was an 8th ed style unit. Also at that point I had miners getting primed as well as that was the incarnation of the list. Yes, indecisive!

So there is how they were starting!

The initial list was

1 Warden King
1 Runelord
20 Thunderers
20 Miners
20 Warriors with hand weapons and shields
10 Warriors with great weapons

Idea behind it was use as much Battle for Skull Pass models as possible.

This started evolving rapidly!

Currently the list is sitting as

Warden King
Warriors with hand weapons and shields
20 Warriors with great weapons
20 Thunderers
10 Ironbreakers

I started painting the Warriors by getting Army Painter Plate Mail sprayed onto the chain parts, then it was onto the beards on the torsos while the parts were separate. Alongside them I started the Thunderers. Two days of painting I have almost got 60 of them to a VERY basic level for Warhammer World.  Tonight (Thursday) I sprayed the characters, Iron Breakers and 20 Battle for Skull Pass Warriors.  As I've almost done the great weapon Warriors and Thunderers it means I can swap to the last 30 models with minimal fuss.

Iron breakers I foresee little problems with, again spray them plate mail, paint the beards on separate heads and them wash before picking out bronze colours means they will go fast.  The older BfSP sculpts will take a bit longer, but will end up roughly the same as the Thunderers, blue and silver, random beard colours, leather pouches etc as you can see from the messily prewashed models!

Pretty simple scheme means it's fast to do as well.

I'd have loved to have got them a little better rather than splodged colours, but meh, limited time plus it gives me something to build on as if I enjoy the Seeds of Hope at Warhammer World as much as I expect to, I think the Dwarves will be making a return trip soon and progress can be seen!

Monday, 8 August 2016

Tale of Gamers: Forsaken Test Paint and a bit of assembly

My key goal for the weekend was to test the planned paint scheme for my army. I'm terrible at visualising colours, so it's vital I get some paint on a model early on to get a good idea as to whether or not the scheme in my head will actually work.

So, here's the guinea pig. He's not finished - the objective was purely just to block in the main colours to make sure they tie together OK. I'm using an off white Vallejo for the white armour, washed with Nuln Oil thinned with Lahmian Medium. The cloth is GW light purple edge paint with a very thinned GW purple wash, too. The horns and growths are bone and Earthshade wash, while the skin is Rakarth Flesh and Fleshtone wash. The metal detail is the new GW light silver, which is really very good. Stormcast Silver? Something like that.

My white definitely needs work. I think I'll probably layer some light greys and whites over the base and wash to make it cleaner. The flesh needs some bruising and detail picking out. All the bone needs detail picking out by hand, which will suck.

I'm undecided about the belt and straps. Sim reckons I should use a different white, I was considering a brown of some kind. I'm still not sure.

Still, next weekend I hope to have five of the monsters up to something approaching tabletop quality. Should be pretty feasible!

Here's another two assembled - just three need the arms and heads adding now. I've tried to give each one a bit of personality, rather than just jamming parts together at random. At least, they work in my head.

Forsaken are Warriors of Chaos who've mutated too much to be completely in control any more. They're never going to make Champion, let alone daemonhood. They're on a slow descent towards spawndom.

Slaanesh is very much about excess, and the rest of the warband probably has mixed feelings about them - respect for their dedication to have pushed themselves so far, but disappointment (with perhaps a little 'there but for...' feelings) in their failings. The name that springs to mind, for me, is The Indulged.

Friday, 5 August 2016

Circle of Chaos Kickstarter Ajjatahr - Experimenting with Paint

I had recently bought many new delicious paints, and decided I wanted to see what they were like. Given the palette of colours available, I thought Ajjatahr, that delightful tree-person from the Circle of Chaos Kickstarter would be an excellent test subject.

The colours I was playing around with were some Vallejo colours from their Model Colour and Model Air range, a Dark Star sepia wash, and some Coat d'Arms colours.

I heard a few people referring to the Vallejo Dark Sea Blue, from the Model Colour range, as being an awesome dark blue green for blending and shades. In this case, I started off by using it as a base coat. Sadly, I mixed a bit too much retarder medium in, so had to go for a teensy bit of a walk to wait for it to dry.

For those of you who remember me painting my D&D Tiefling, Myth, I used some of the Dark Sea Blue then to blend the darker colours, and it was excellent for that too.

Next up, I drybrushed using the Vallejo Model Air Pale Blue. Yes, it's advertised for airbrushes, but it still works just fine on a brush. This was followed up by the Dark Star Sepia wash. It seemed to work OK, but probably wasn't really the paint I wanted in this circumstance. I'll have to try it out again some time on something else.

Next up was some Coat d'Arms "Italian Red Earth". I sort of loved and hated this all at the same time. It was the consistency of milk and had practically no coverage. For blending and thinned down as a wash, it would be lovely for adding some depth into a colour, but on it's own, it covered very poorly. It's made by the people who made the first Games Workshop paints, and the coverage of yellows at that point was pretty poor.

I also used their Angel Red on the mushrooms - this had a much better coverage, and had a nice tone to it.

I fixed the yellow with some more sepia ink washes, and drybrushing with the Pale Blue again to bring the model back together. Patches of moss and growth got a heavy drybrush of Model Air "Duck Egg Green", which worked well. Coat d'Arms Hawk Turquoise was dropped into the eyes. The base was more Italian Red Earth, washed with the Sepia while still wet.

Finally tidied up the base once to wash was dry with some drybrushing - mixing the Duck Egg with the Italian Red Earth to excellent effect. The base edging is the Italian Red Earth after ten billion coats and basically shovelling the stuff on. If there was any detail to obscure there, it would have been obscured!

On the back, you can see some of the Angel Red better on the fungus growing on the body.

All in all, I really enjoyed this experiment. It was very much playing with paints in ways I wouldn't usually, and not falling back on old tricks. I liked how the model came out as a result, too!

I want to say something deep here, but can't think of words. But experimenting and trying new things is how you learn, alongside practice. I hope to be doing more of it in the future.

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Tale of Gamers: A beginning

So, I am engaged in a battle of nerdery and productivity with James over at Gonzo History Gaming. I ahd a bit of a think, and I've sketched out my army as:

Lord of Slaanesh on Daemonic Mount
10 Chaos Marauders
10 Chaos Warriors
10 Forsaken
2 Chaos Spawn

First up on the block are the Forsaken, as they're already half assembled. You'll notice I'm sticking to square bases with this army for compatability with older systems. In order to stay on target, I need to get them all painted by the end of August. I'm continuing to assemble the second five while I paint up one as a test to check I'm happy with my planned colour scheme.

By halfway through the month, I should have half painted and the others assembled, and be forging ahead with prepping the Chaos Marauders and Chaos Spawn for painting.

This is an ambitious pace, but it is not impossible. Wish me luck!

Monday, 1 August 2016

Weekend progress - goblin wizard painted

So, alongside the fun and games of trying to paint a small Chaos army in five months, I knew that I needed to get a few quick paint jobs done in between, if only to maintain my own sanity, if not interest in the project. I know I have a bad habit of getting hung up on stuff if I spend too long on that and nothing else. So, along comes another goblin.

This is a GoblinAid sculpt by George Fairlamb. I originally painted the robes blue in the intention of painting stars on it in yellow, but the practice stars soon made it clear I didn't have the brush control to manage that. So, that turned into the star on the hat.

I have also updated my Goblin project page with the extra progress.

I also got a bit of miniature preparation done - nothing work photographing at the moment, though. I finally finished assembling and undercoating my Arco-flagellants for my Inquisition force. I also started on a Chaos Blacksmith for a painting challenge over at the Oldhammer Forum.

The model pictured, though, was my cleaning the resin on Tik Tok by Darkstar Miniatures, as a favour for my darling wife. It's a lovely sculpt, and made me definitely think about picking up one or two of their kits for painting. Perhaps as a reward for getting through the current Tale of Gamers project?

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Battle Report: Death from the Skies, Astra Militarum vs Grey Knights, 1750 points

Playing Imperial Guard / Astra Militarum is not necessarily "easy mode". For starters, you end up having to lug cases like this through the London rush hour to get to your games. One of my old regular opponents from when I was playing 40K more regularly laid down a challenge, and who was I to turn away from a challenge?

We decided to go up to 1,750 points to fit in a few more toys, and to make sure we had some flyers. I wanted to try out these new "Death from the Skies" rules, and my opponent was kind enough to agree. The mission ended up being lengthwise deployment, card missions, the one where you don't know what your opponent has.

Two teleporting Dreadknights and a Land Raider full of Purifiers? Lovely. Also, there were some deep striking terminators and two Storm Ravens. Ooh! Both of the Dreadknights could teleport. This wasn't going to go well...

The first new thing Death from the Skies introduces is a new "Dogfight" phase for flyers in reserve. You don't have to use it if you don't want to, and if one person wants to avoid a dogfight, then they can roll to try and get out of it. You both select one of three moves to work out distance, work out facing, and work out who gets to shoot by reading off a little table.

First dogfight, and I got the drop on the Storm Raven, and my Vendetta put a glancing hit onto it. My opponent was certainly looking a little nervous as I opened up with three twin linked lascannons!

Then, in came the Grey Knight Terminators and Librarian, teleporting in under the Skyshield Landing pad I'd deployed by conscripts on.

The Dreadknights did their teleport shunt trick, with one moving to deal with the Praetorians.

The other Dreadknight dropped in at the centre of the line to try and carve it's way through to the Hydra.

The radical Xenos Inquisitor leading the Praetorians, my army Warlord, was charged by the Dreadknight. To give the Praetorians some credit, they and the Inquisitor managed to hold the blasted thing up for ages, dying in droves, bayonetting it for a wound, and generally tying it up for most of the battle.

Dogfight number two. It, erm, didn't go so well. Roundly outmanoeuvred, I ended up with the blasted thing right on my tail and within optimal multi-melta range. Unsurprisingly, the Vendetta did not survive the experience...

The Grey Knight Land Raider tried to fit through a narrow gap between the bunker and the wood. It proceeded to get jammed in among the trees, and unable to move.

Some revenge was had - the Leman Russ Executioner and Demolisher opened fire on the Grey Knights, along with the Heavy Plasma Cannon Sentinels... The Grey Knight Librarian evaporated, along with all but one of the squad, cowering behind a pillar where the last of the crossfire couldn't quite see him.

The Dreadknight jumped across, peppering the side of the Hydra with shots to try and make the sky safe for the Grey Knight flyers.

But it was the Grey Knight Terminator charging in who finished it off.

The Vendetta gone, the Storm Ravens raced onto the field, ramjets screaming.

The Purifiers disembarked from the damaged Land Raider, closing with the nearby Guardsmen and their associated witch.

The powers of their Cleansing Flame obliterated the psyker, and many of his bodyguard.

It was starting to not look good for the Astra Militarum.

The flyers assisted with the mop up operation, wiping out the conscripts.

While the Dreadknight took revenge on the Sentinels.

Finally, to smoking Leman Russes, both barely held together, was all that was left of the proud Astra Militarum...

The Grey Knights have a policy of no witnesses. While the rogue Inquisitor and his pet witch were dead, none would carry word of their activities back to the Imperium.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Malifaux Changeling Proxy finished, and an Age of Sigmar scheme...

So, first up, I've managed to get the last Malifaux Changeling proxy finished. Apart from that bit of grey at the front which of course I only noticed as I was uploading the blasted thing. It'll be gone by the time he hits the table, I promise. The miniature is, as with the other two proxies, from Heresy. You should buy his stuff. It's pretty darned good.

I did have a bit of a disaster at the weekend with this model, though. Here's a WiP, just as I'm trying to blend the highlights. The hot weather was murdering my blending!

This is the wonder-juice that fixed it. It's amazingly good, though can be frustrating if you're trying to speed paint! I used a bit too much with another model I was painting that weekend (not finished, so no pics yet), and it took forever to dry!

I also finished assembling this lovely swamp witch. She's available from Krakon Games, should you be of a mind. She's going to go alongside a Troll Outpost sculpt I picked up a Kickstarter a while ago.

Next up on the painting table is this lovely tree person from the Circle of Chaos Kickstarter. I mostly grabbed him as a quick speed paint with a grab bag of assorted paints I've not used before to see what they're like. He's not quite finished yet, so once he's done, I'll get a post up about him.

Age of Sigmar Tale of Gamers

So there I was, chatting away on the social medias about the new General's Handbook and all the models I hadn't painted when up popped James Holloway of Gonzo History: Gaming Edition. He suggested perhaps a joint blog thing, wherein we would get some Age of Sigmar stuff painted up. After a bit of maths and checking of my busy schedule, I accepted the challenge!

We're not against other people joining in, though, so this is a call for other shmucks / bloggers to join in. We're looking to try and get 1,000 points of Age of Sigmar stuff painted between August and December - with 5 months, thats about 200 points a month.

We're both using models we mostly already have (apart from maybe fixing an under strength unit or so), but if you want to be buying new stuff, feel free and go ahead. I'm also hoping in January that at least James and I will be able to get a game in against each other with our newly painted complete playable force.

So - if you're interested, drop James or I a note, and we can have a chat about people getting involved. If it's just the two of us, though, I'm sure we'll manage, like some kind of super nerdy buddy cop movie. Except with wargamers.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Getting the motor running

I remembered where my paint brushes were! This is a work in progress on the last Heresy Miniatures figure I'm using as a Changeling for Malifaux. I've been pretty heavy on assembling stuff for the past few weeks, but I really got in the mood for painting a few bits and pieces this weekend, so got to work on this little half finished fellow.

Of course, I didn't spend the entire weekend on that. The other hobby relevant thing I did was starting to sort out the horror that was my old paints bag.

I cleared a space on the work table and set up this wondrous thing for a bunch of my paints. You can pick them up from HobbyZone. Luckily, I picked mine up shortly before certain poor choices crashed the value of the pound.

This one still needs to find a place on the table, but fits smaller pots. I still need to pick up another stand for some of the middle sized pots - old GW, current Forge World air and Cote d'Arms stuff.

Beyond that, the plan is to just start plugging through all the different things I have to do! Schemes bubbling in my head include getting a small Age of Sigmar force up and running, starting on the Cypher project, and any number of the boxed games I own - including getting started on Horus Heresy!