Friday, 9 February 2018

Necromunda - Bitten by the Bug!




Ah, new games..!

When the first Necromunda came out, I was in my early 20's, and loved it. I still have some of my original Orlock gangers, now stripped back from the frankly appalling paint jobs I gave them!
The original packing for the Gangs back in the 90's...

What remains of my 1st House Orlock Gang!




For those who don't follow the various games from GW, Necromunda is a skirmish level war-game, which can be played on a board (the Underhive) or on multiple levels (the Spires) giving a huge range of tactical options to the players.

Each player takes control of a Gang - of which there are six - chosen from the Noble Houses of Hive Primaris;

Escher - Mistresses of Poison and Drugs
Orlock - The House of Steel
Goliath - the Forgebrutes
Cawdor - The largest, and poorest House, religious fanatics
Delaque - Masters of intrigue and spy craft
Van Saar - Techno lords

Of the six, I've always gravitated to Orlock and Escher - they scream 90's metal bands to me, all leather coats, studs and BIG HAIR!

So, I've bought the main box, which contains both Escher and Goliath gangs (enough to start both), but this past weekend allowed me chance to purchase the new Orlocks early... a chance I didn't pass up!

The new Orlocks!

Flipping through different schemes, and looking at the minis, I wanted to paint mine in a way that would make them stand out a little.  Whilst I was looking at them, and browsing the internet, a film from 1988 was playing in the back ground... one of my all time favourites..

AKIRA.

An animated movie, based on a 2000 page Manga of the same name, AKIRA tells the story of a gang of biker youths in Neo-Tokyo, a hive of gangs, unrest and strange goings on... it was settled - I'd be painting my Orlocks to match the head of the gang - a youth named Kaneda:

Character study of Kaneda by Katsuhiro Otomo

In uncharacteristically short space of time, I've now got a fully painted gang! These have took me a little over 12 hours to paint, and I've enjoyed every minute of it!

The whole Gang! Love the Harpoon gun!
The Gang Leader - showing the 'pill' detail on the back of the jacket

The plan is to buy a 2 box when they're on full release to add in more weapon options, and then another box when the trailed weapon expansion packs are released.

In terms of building the minis, they're great to put together - there's enough scope to convert the gangers in multiple manners with little difficulty, and I can easily see ways to swap parts with the Cadian Imperial Guard kits, to allow for even further customisation.

Now to choose which Gang to tackle next - or do I do the Hired Guns?




Sunday, 21 January 2018

New Year New Army - the 1st 1000 points painted!


In every project there are milestones - and this years #newyearnewarmy project (Word Bearer Chaos Marines) has reached a pretty good one quickly!

Starting on New Year's Day, I've now painted 1000 points of the army, which has been great fun.

There is:

Lorgar (Daemon Prince):

Squad of 5 Chaos Marines:

Squad of 10 Chaos Marines:


20 Cultists:

6 Raptors:

A Forgefiend:

Along with a few partially painted units, I took on my friend Josh's Dark Angels yesterday for their first ever fight..

The Mission was 'Secure and Control' - each player places an objective marker in their deployment zone (which in this case was the 'Search and Destroy' version - table quarters). Suspecting Josh would be taking fast Ravenwing units on the whole, I knew I had to deal with those as quickly as I could... 

Which worked for a few rounds as I tied up his Ravenwing bikers with the Forge Fiend, and wth the assistance of some deep striking Oblitorators (yet to be shown here) I took out most of his Land Speeders... 

Problem was, even with a few bikes left, he was still able to reach my objective by turn 6 whilst I languished trying to take out his units that had dug in!

So unfortunately it was a 4-2 loss to me (my points came from First Blood and Linebreaker, Josh's from Linebreaker and Capture the Objective).

Still, I learned a few things, got a taste for the army and I'm looking forward to our next tussle!


Tuesday, 9 January 2018



First squad of the army done! 

They're relatively easy to paint:

Armour:
Black undercoat
Khorne Red basecoat
Carroburg Crimson wash
Squig Orange edge highlight

Trim:
Leadbelcher Base
Nuln Oil wash
Ironbreaker edge highlight

Horns:
Rakarth Flesh base
Agrax Earthshade wash
Ushabti Bone highlight

Lenses:
Sybarite Green

I then added script using Ulthuan Grey.

The bases are:

Mechanicum Grey base
Agrax Earthshade wash
Screaming Skull drybrush

All nice and easy, if not the quickest way to paint them!




Sunday, 7 January 2018

Building the Word Bearers - Week 1

'It's called treachery, Roboute. It works very well'

The months of planning were beginning to show signs of progress.  Men and materials moved from surface to ship, the Dark Gods having calmed the storms that lashed the world for millennia.  

Lorgar turned to look out over the preparations, seeing for himself that even after thousands of years of depredation, of worship to the true Gods, his sons were still the masters of the martial skills ingrained into their very being, serried ranks of men clad in crimson, bone and steel, Apostles interspersed between their lines, checking on devotional scripts carved into the armour,  awaiting their boarding slots.  None of the bickering, petty machinations of self styled Warlords here, just the most devoted followers of their Father.

Week one has seen me planning the first 1000 points to be painted. This is always a little nerve racking, as I can't take all the toys I want, but have to make sure I cover all tactical bases!

With the Word Bearers, it's pretty easy to pick in some cases - lots of infantry, little in the way of heavy armour was always the Way of Lorgar... but with the inclusion of Daemon Engines, this can be rectified...

So I've chosen, based around the Battalion Force Organisation Chart (to make sure I get the Command Points - they're so useful):

HQ:

Daemon Prince (Lorgar Himself)

Dark Apostle (which I'm going to use the Forgeworld Zardu Layak model for)

Troops:

20 Chaos Cultists (Champion, Heavy Flamer, Heavy Stubber, 17 Cultists)

10 Chaos Marines (Aspiring Champion with Power Fist, Flamer, 8 Marines)

5 Chaos Marines (Aspiring Champion with Power Fist, Flamer, 3 Marines)

Heavy Support:

Forgefiend (Ectoplasma Cannons)

Fast Attack:

6 Raptors (Champion with Lightning Claws, 2 Meltas, 3 with Bolt Pistol & Chainsword)

The first to be painted was of course, Aurelian himself - Lorgar, Daemon Prince of the Word Bearers Legion...

The Forgeworld Model is stunning - it oozes arrogance in the stance, the superior outlook of the devoted man intent on purifying the galaxy in the name of his father, the God Emperor.  To change this into the Daemon Prince he becomes was pretty easy - a head swap with a Khorne Champion, the inclusion of a Possessed arm and a change to the back pack to give it the more flared vents of the Chaos Marine....

In terms of painting I used the Word Bearers Red as the base for the armour, with gold trim.


Up next is the first squad of Marines!


Wednesday, 3 January 2018

A Brother's Hatred Runs Deep.... A New army for 2018!

Lorgar shifted in his seat, a throne fashioned from the bleached bones of his slain enemies (and some 'friends') creaked under the weight of the Chaos infused Primarch.

"So, Roboute has awoken from his long slumber... and not a moment too soon it appears" he mused, the knuckles of his right fist turning even whiter as he gripped the arm of the throne.

'Whilst I suspect that the guiding hand of our Lord Tzeentch may well be behind his miraculous recovery, it would be wrong of me not to welcome my brother back properly... After all, Mortarion has failed to deal with him, so as usual it is left to me to deal with our Fathers Favourite!'

Spitting out the the last few words, Lorgar rose from his carrion throne, with a grand sweep of his mutated arm, almost decapitating one of the many robed servants who attended to his every whim.  Calling for his most trusted Captains, Lorgar made ready to leave the safety of the Eye and venture forth into the world of Man to finally settle the matter of sibling rivalry set in motion some 10,000 years before....


Each year I try and choose an army that will be the main focus of my painting and modelling activities. Some years I'm successful (Last year's Eldar project that's now 4k plus a Phantom Titan and 2 Super Heavies) others not so (erm, last year's Space Wolves project that lasted... one model).

This year, I'm returning to one of my favourites - The Word Bearers!  I already have a large Horus Heresy themed WB army, so it seemed only right that I also added to this with a full on Chaos Marine force for the new(ish) 8th Edition 40k.

The rules of creating a project for me are pretty simple:

1) Do I have enthusiasm for the project?

2) Can I do the painting and modelling justice?

3) Can I tell a story with the army?

Well, in terms of the WB, I can answer all three with a resounding YES!  You'll notice that I don't ask myself 'Can I win with this army?' - this doesn't matter to me - if the army tells a story, and is faithful to the background then I'm happier than if it's a random mix of units designed to simply win games (which holds no motivation to me as a painter).

In order to approach the army in the right way, and not just buy random stuff until I can't move for kits (erm... I've never done this. Honest. Ok, maybe once or twice...) I've made some notes on what I want it to be:

1) It needs a Daemon Prince to represent Lorgar himself as there's no 40k model or stats for him...
3) Ideally, it needs to be possessed & Chosen heavy, to represent the fanatical zeal of the Word Bearers
4) Cultists! Lots of Cultists!
5) Not many Heavy Support units as the Word Bearers were all about having overwhelming numbers (at the height of the Crusade, it was said the Word Bearers were one of the most numerous Legions...)

With that in mind, I headed off to Warhammer World and bought from Forgeworld:

1) Lorgar
2) Zardu Layak (to use as a Dark Apostle)
3) A squad of Gal Vorbak
4) A box of Chaos Marines (which will be interspersed with parts from the Mks III and IV kits).

I started on Lorgar last night - just a couple of subtle changes to the 'core' model, as in the background, Lorgar doesn't undergo the huge changes wrought on Angron, Fulgrim or Mortarion...


And here he is - Lorgar, Prince of the XVII Legion, the Word Bearers!


The ultimate aim is to have 1500 points ready for the end of March, at which time I have been challenged to a grudge match by a certain Ultramarines Player... He will rue the day he uttered such a challenge!


Sunday, 31 December 2017

Looking Forward - New stuff in 2018!

In the first of my 'looking forward' posts, I'm going to highlight the Kickstarters that will be fulfilling over the next few months that I've backed.

The first half of 2018 promises to be a busy one for my postman with several 'big box' and a few smaller (yet perfectly formed) offerings dropping through my door!

From Cool Mini Or Not, we have two - SMOG: The World of Moloch, and Zombicide: The Green Horde.

The World Of Smog: Rise of Moloch appealed to me as it's another spin on the Steampunk theme, with players working together to stop the villainous Cult and it's members from taking over!  The minis look as nice as ever, and as with every CMON Kickstarter, they're in abundance! The rules will appear familiar to anyone who's played Zombicide (lots of cards, a character dashboard and random enemy activation) but with a change in setting, I hope it'll keep my groups attention for a while. Even then, I'll have lots of nice Steampunk models to port over to my other games (including the excellent Osprey Books 'In Her Majesty's Name' which I adore).  This is due Feb 2018.



Also from CMON is Zombicide: Green Horde. The next in the ever so successful Zombicide franchise, moving the Black Plague setting on using... Zombie Orcs! This appealed to me as I've enjoyed playing the other versions, and this promises to build up on if not reinvent the game. Not to mention that the figures are getting BIG in this edition (2 Giants, a siege engine and... a Dragon!) Again, hundreds of miniatures are included, with some really nice nods to celebrities and popular culture characters (I'm looking forward to painting Lemmy, Prince and David Bowie's survivors). This is due Feb 2018.




Ever wondered what would happen, if Orcs, Dwarves and Gnomes were involved in a World War 1 setting? That's the premise behind the brilliant game PANZERFAUSTE, from Hysterical Games.  Adding to the table top skirmish battle is the forthcoming Spitfyre: Aerial Combat game!  Taking to the skies on the backs of giant eagles, wyverns and.. pigeons(?!), the game promises to be fast, tactical and fun to play. The minis look lovely, detailed and nice to paint. This is due June 2018.




The fourth game I'm looking forward to is one that's a reinvention of a previously released game, but one I've not had any experience of.  TT Combat are rapidly becoming the guys who buy up great IP from companies that haven't had the best of success, turning it around and making relative successes of them. From this comes Carnivale - Gang fighting in the streets of Venice.  Whilst that on the face may seem a little... dull, the setting is a lot darker than that allows for - vampires and fishmen stalk the streets and canals, fighting for supremacy against religious zealots and cultists a plenty! The figures look stunning (I've gone for vampires, werewolves and aristocracy), the add on MDF buildings (which TT Combat are famed for) are great and the rules - the rules look smooth to run and easy to pick up.  All in all an exciting package!  This is due in February 2018.


In the coming posts I'll be previewing RPGs, what we know is coming from Games Workshop in terms of 40k, AOS and Horus Heresy and accessories galore! 





Saturday, 30 December 2017

NEW YEAR... NEW DIRECTION!

I'm sat here on the Saturday before New Year's Eve, watching Total Recall (the Verhoeven version, not the remake - ew.), thinking about the last year in my hobby, and the last few days....

2017 has been a good year for my hobby related activities, with me building not one, but 4 near-complete armies, due to the release of the excellent 8th Edition of Warhammer 40,000:

Craftworld Eldar

Eldar Harlequins

Exorcists Space Marines

Astra Militarum


All tied around a central idea of them working with a senior Inquisitor following the start of the Terran Crusade, to stem the tide of Chaos across the galaxy. I'll be showcasing the miniatures of each over the next few weeks, along with the back stories I've started to flesh out.

That's just a small part of the goodness - I've also got a stable, regular RPG group now which is playing Starfinder (and loving it), along with a more casual group who are playing 5th edition DnD (my holy grail of a long term Cthulhu campaign still eludes me however...)!

The not so good...

There's been a noticeable rise in the more.. negative participants in our hobby. At first they seemed to have been restricted to the more risible Facebook Groups, but recently, they've begun to show themselves in Youtube channels, blogs and other media. One such negative channel is Arch Warhammer - a Youtube content creator who has delighted in becoming alt-right in their leanings, attacking (and having their followers attack) anyone who disagrees with their anti-feminist, ant-left rants (such as attacking the Feminist 40k group for wanting equal representation of women in the miniature ranges outside of the Sisters of Battle line).  It would be easy to just ramble on and rant about this idiot, but, wanting to channel that energy to be more positive and welcoming to everyone, I've reached out to my fellow Twitter users (under the #warmongers tag) to look at how we can promote the positive, inclusive attitude that's needed in our hobby, with the aim of making it the best it can be.

Look out over the coming weeks for highlights of other blogs, channels and websites that all have a positive, proactive and inclusive attitude, along with reviews of manufacturers, sellers and all-round great hobby providers (a small taster of these can be found in the 'Friends of CGI' sidebar).

I look forward to sharing my hobby with you over the coming weeks and months - hope you're along for the ride!