Sep 2, 2011

Extra, Extra, Read All About It! The Blog is Moving!

Some of you have may have noticed that I haven't been posting as often as I had in the past.  Well, it's because I've been saving up some content as I have a special announcement.  In collaboration with a few Warhammer buddies we have created  a new "Super Blog", affectionately titled the Magnificent Bastards. So starting today I will be posting all future content on this new blog.  All of the current content is available on the new blog and I hope that you will follow me over to the new destination .  I guarantee that you will be glad you did!


Aug 10, 2011

2500 Tourney at Memphis Factory Store

We have a small 2500 point Fantasy Tournament this weekend at the Memphis Factory store.  This time I've decided to run something quite different from the defensive, foot slogger TK armies I've historically fielded.  This time I'm going with an all mobile list.  While I will probably get smashed in some scenarios (hello watchtower) it should be pretty fun to play.  At the very least it gives me a chance to run some units that hardly ever make it to the table (Skeleton Cavalry).  BTW - that is a Heirotitan and not a Colossus.  :)

I will post the full army list tomorrow, but for now here is a quick shot of the army.

Tomb King Magic Counters

For BitS I created some Tomb King Magic counters.  Just print out the PDF, glue the sheet to some black foam core and cut them out with a hobby knife. Voila, counters to keep track of your magic phase.

Quick Update

Ever since BitS I've sort of take a break from Warhammer. It's always a good idea to step away from time to time as, for me, it keeps it fresh. But I've just received a new shipment of brushes and I'm now ready to rock and roll again!

Aug 3, 2011

Plastic Cement Upgrade

Over the years I've been using the various plastic cements that come in the standard plastic bottle along with Plastiweld - which is the brush on cement.  At Blood in the Sun I managed to break my Necropolis Knights multiple times and the boys at Miniature Painting Authority (the repair squad) were using plastic cement in a precision dropper bottle.  I liked it so much that I figured I would give it a try.  I picked up the Testors version and after using it last night to assemble some TK archers (really who has enough TK archers these days?) I really, really love this stuff.  The metal needle dropper tips makes accurately dispensing just the precise amount of glue amazing. Also, it comes with a couple of wires to ream out the needle and the cap actually prevents any glue from leaking out. 
I honestly did not know what I was missing and I wish I would have tried this stuff years ago.

Jul 28, 2011

Princeton Brush Company

Over the past year I've been heavily painting quite on my Dwarf and Tomb King Armies.  Over the years I've become a fan boy for the Windsor Newton Series 7 as I really think their quality has actually improved my painting.  But there are those occasions that you just don't want to pull out the expensive brushes for fear of damaging my prize possessions.  In particular anytime I employ drybrushing or paint metallics I typically look to an alternative, aka cheaper, brush.  Well I'm glad to say that I've found an alternative line of brushes that are inexpensively priced and seem to fair a bit better than the the typical craft store brushes.  They are made by the Princeton Brush Company and the brand is knows as Real Value.  I've been using the Camel and Sable sets (9100, 9101 and 9105) and I've been very happy with the results.  So if you are the market for some cheap, alternative brushes I recommend you check them out.

Jul 14, 2011

The Wild Herd

At Blood in the Sun this past weekend I had he luxury to see an amazing Beastman army up close and personal.  Not only does it look fricken awesome, it plays well too as it scored 2nd place overall.  The army is the prize possession of one Mr. Johnny HPB Hastings (Point Hammered).  For anyone that hasn't been living under a rock this is part of the army that took first place at the Adepticon Fantasy Team Championship this year. 

I've been playing fantasy since 1997 and I can honestly say that this is the prettiest army that I've ever seen in the flesh.  Every model is lavishly painted in extreme detail and the conversion work is nothing short of amazing.  So when you can spare a moment I highly recommend that you head on over to the The Wild Herd and check it out for yourself. Also, his latest army WIP can be found at Orctonnia.

Army of Rasetra

Random Pictures from BitS


Blood in the Sun Recap Part Deux

I went into BitS hoping to be in the top half at the end of the day.  I came in 24th out of 50 players overall, so that is cutting it a bit close for my taste.  But overall I'm still pleased with the result.  On the battle points side, which accounted for ~ 50% of total score, I sort of reaped what I sowed scoring only 47 points.  I simply didn't put in the practice time needed with the list to have a better understanding of each units role.  It turned out to burn me as this tournament had lots of seasoned generals from the Midwest, which meant that none of the games were a cake walk.  I will still take a morale victory out of going 3-2!
On the soft score front I was really happy with the results.  My comp score was a 31 out of 35.  Realistically, it probably could have been a little lower considering the amount of archers I took and the toughness of the War Spinx.  For sportsmanship I netted 31 out of 35.  It's a fine score considering I wasn't overly enthusiastic when I was getting my s$%$ pushed in.  The only thing that burns me is that Domus netted a perfect 35 and I will never hear the end of it.  At least I got to see first hand the "Domus Factor" in the flesh!  For paint I scored a 40.  That is a little higher than I was expecting considering that I ended up fielding a few older units that need to be replaced.  Fortunately, the theme and the better painted units pulled me through.  Though I swear I had to repair the necropolis knights like 4 or 5 times over the weekend the weekend!  I'm really excited for what the future holds for next tournament since I will have all new units painted up and a much nicer display board to better convey the jungle theme.
Big thanks the Grant, Chris, Steve and the rest of the tourney crew that put on a great event.  Fingers crossed that next year I will get to attend both BitS and the Buckeye Battles!  Finally I want to give a big shout out to all the cool players that I met over the weekend.  Now I just need to shake the HPB Virus I came home with!

Jul 13, 2011

Chariots WIP

Blood in the Sun Recap

Last weekend I attended the inaugural Blood in the Sun event outside of Chicago.  BitS was a 2400 point GT, with no special characters and everything else straight from the book.  I found it really challenging to create a list as every option meant I had to leave some toys at home.  Unfortunately, I didn't get a chance to play test the list I ended up fielding, and I suffered the worse for it as you will see in a couple of my games.  Something else that was different at BitS was that we only and 2 1/2 hours per round.  This meant that you had to play quickly and unfortunately I only completed 3 out of my 5 games.  Not a big deal in the grand scheme of things but it did end up costing me a few points. 
On Friday I drove up to Dojo Domus and picked up Jeff Tupper and James Hyde from Middle of Nowhere, Illinois.  We then completed the 3 hour trip to the Chicago burbs and got to the Double Tree hotel that was hosting the Bits in the wee morning of Saturday.  After registration on Saturday I rocked up and began the fun!  Here is what was in my list.
2400 Point Tomb Kings List
Tomb Prince: GW, Armor of Fortune, Dragonbane Gem, Ironcurse Icon
Tomb Herald: GW, Armor of Destiny
Liche Priest (Level 1 Nehekhara): Dispell Scroll
Tomb Guard x22: Light Armor, Shield, Full command
Heirophant (Level 3 Nehekhara): Earthing Rod, Tal of Presver
Archers x 29: Full command 
Chariots x 4: Full command, Banner of the eternal flame
Necropolis Knights x 4: Full command
War Spynx: Fiery roar
Horse archers x 5
Casket of Souls
Screaming Skull Catapult x 2
Game 1 Joe "Luck of the Rodge" Rogers (Wood Elves)
In the opening round match I finally got the opportunity to play Joe "Luck of the Rodge" Rodgers.  It wasn't really luck as I had called him out and challenged him.  Impressively he accepted knowing that I've been running Tomb King and Dwarfs of late, neither of which were a great match up for Wood Elves.  His army was based around 3 treeman, eagle riding hero and a few smaller units of dryads and archers.  He also included a small unit of wardancers which I can only assume were their for the painting score!  I should also mention that Joe's army was beautifully painted.  It is both amazing and humbling to think what Joe was able to do in such a short amount of time.  During deployment it became quite clear that the Rog had out deployed me (that shouldn't surprise anyone) as I found his Treemen in positions where they would be protected from the SSC.  The first couple of turns we traded some bow fire and his eagle rider took a ridiculous amount of shots turning all but 1 wound away (this will become more important later).  Turn 3 saw the game break open as Joe moved his 3 treeman out of cover and headed for my line.  I was able to tie up the uber treeman with my Tomb Guard and I scored a direct hit on both of the other treemen with the SSC, killing them outright.  Then if that wasn't enough the dice Gods really took a shine to me.  The eagle rider charged from behind my ranks into the SSC.  The rider whiffed his attacks and in return the skeleton scored enough wounds to finish off the hero.  This gave me just enough points to score a minor victory.  However, when you are playing a gamer of Joe's stature any victory, no matter how small the margin, is thrilling.
Win 11-9
Game 2 Joe "Sally Joe" Cook (Lizardmen)
I met "Sallie Joe" the previous night as he is part of the Garagehammer bunch that was putting on BitS.  Not much to say about this game except I simply found my level 3 Heirophant and level 1 liche priest lacking.  I really had no answer for the Shadow magic the tooled up Slann was sending my way.  The four salamanders and the skink units didn't help me out either.  In the end I was simply outclassed by a better army.  In retrospect I should have put all of my eggs into trying to kill the Slann.  While it was a long shot that was my only hope. 
Loss 16-4
Game 3 Robert Elmer (Chaos Dwarves)
Going into game three I was really excited about the prospect of playing the Flaming Dwarves again.  I had not played them for going on 10 years and I was eager to see what the army could do with the Indy GT book.  Robert Elmer turned out to be a very competent general and we made sure that we had an interesting, albeit, blood affair.  The game saw a lot of combat and many casualties on both sides.  In the end it was my bone head decision to overrun my Warsphinx which ended up getting him flanked charged by the Obsidian Guard. That turned a decent win into only a minor win.  
Win 11-9
Game 4 Ryan Nicol (High Elves)
Just as in game 2 I again found my magic lacking and feeling like I had brought a knife to a gun fight.  Ryan's army was essentially a HE gun line and consisted of 3 bolt throwers, 2 units of archers and 1 unit of sea guard.  He also had a small 5 man unit of Dragon Princes, lion chariot, eagle and a unit of Sword Masters.  He also had a couple of powerful magic users (including a destroy spell scroll and + dice staff) which meant I had no chance of winning on magic.  Add to this my stupid deployment which basically fed my army to him piece meal and it made for a long game.  Ironically, it was the first game I finished turn 6, too bad I left a single Sword Master alive!
Loss 18-2
Game 5 Ryan "The Bear" Golke (Ogres)
I was really excited to learn that I had the infamous Bear in round 5.  I bookended my tournament with one of the HPBs.  Now I just have to get a hold of Hastings, though I need for him to cool down as he was red hot this weekend going 4-0-1 and coming in 2nd overall.  This game was a lot of fun and I was able to outmaneuver his bigger blocks and take them apart one by one.  At the end of the game I had destroyed everything in his army except 3 characters that were part of his 18 Iron Gut death star unit.  Unfortunately, there were a lot of point tied up in those 3 guys.  That coupled with the fact I had to feed his death star units and characters to setup my charges meant the score was a lot closer.  
 Win 14-6
Tournament Takeaways
Take a level 4 or don't bother.  In addition to the +1 in casting and dispelling attempts the extra spell is a must.  In several games I would have been better served rushing my more mobile troops up the middle to put pressure on the opponent rather than putting them on the flanks.  That would have allowed me to hit their fire base and knock out some of the missle troops.
Well, that is it for now.  Hopefully I will catch up on some sleep this week!

Player Scored Composition

Having just returned from Blood in the Sun (more details later) I've begun the process of pouring over the results, starting with composition.  The results can be found here.  In general, I think the players nailed it.  The generally accepted "weaker" armies like Ogres and Wood Elves were given favorable scoring when compared to the "filthier" armies like Lizardmen and Warriors.  There was the typical scoring variation within each particular army as you would expect whenever you leave comp scoring up to the masses.  What I did find interesting is that there were some examples where two nearly identical armies had substantially different comp scores.  This makes me wonder if a players gaming ability effects which type of opponents they will face, thus potentially effecting their comp score.  
Take for example 2 identical WoC armies taken by two different players.  Let's say one is taken by a "good" player who goes 4-1 while the other is taken by an "poor" player who goes 1-4.  What I wonder is does the different type of opponents that each is likely to face have an effect on their comp score?  The player going 4-1 would be playing on the top tables against many like minded players that may have also brought "filthy" armies.  Theses opponents wouldn't necessarily be put off by playing other "filthy" armies as they would probably come into the tournament expecting it and their comp scoring would reflect it.    Compare this to the player going 1-4.  He would be playing near the bottom tables and would likely be playing against new or "fluffy" gamers.  These opponents wouldn't take the tournament as seriously or may not posses the win at all costs mentality.  These opponents would be fielding softer or narrative driven armies that typically would get very good comp scores.  I would expect that these players would find playing the "filthy" army less enjoyable which would be reflected in their comp scoring. 
To sum up, my theory is that if you are going to take a "filthy" army, make sure you win with it and stay at the top.  If not, your comp scores may be hit a little harder than you may have expected.

Jul 6, 2011

Army of Rasetra - Blood in the Sun

Fortunately, this time around I had most everything ready to go well in advance.  Made prepping for BitS much less stressful!  Here are the shots of the "finished" army.  I will endeavor to get some better shots at BitS.  As I got in zero practice games I'm relying on favorable matchups and decent soft scores to pull me through!

Jul 5, 2011


With Blood in the Sun only days away my army had an urgent need for a proper Necrotect.  I attempted to kit bash my own but  I ended up going with the official Finecast version.  My intention was to do a full step by step guide, unfortunately I didn't have the time.  He is not going to win a Golden Demon, but for under 4 hours I'm happy with the results.  I especially like the skin.  Apologise for the crappy pix, someday I may just get around to getting that light box.

Jul 4, 2011

Necropolis Knights - Done and Dusted

I'm finally finished with the remaining Necropolis Knights.  This makes the unit 6 strong including full command.  Doubtful I will ever field a 6 man unit, but this gives me some options.

This weekend I finished the final touches that make the unit pop.  One thing that really came out great was that I removed the tabs on the Cold One feet and pinned them to the base.  With texture and paint I did my best to blend the feet into the base.  Also, I'm really happy with how the bases came out.  I was going to use resin bases and I actually bought about $70 of bases from Dragon Forge.  Instead I opted for my own bases made with plasticard and sand. 

Again, my apologies for the pix.  I need a light box!  :)


Jul 1, 2011

Necro Knight WIP

First Impressions with Finecast

With another tournament looming I picked up 2 of the new TK characters, the Necrotect and the Liche Priest.  I opened up the Necrotect and after admiring the crisp detail on the model I cut out a piece of spure and then bent it between my figures.  Unfortunately it snapped pretty easily under only modest pressure.  It' did snap cleanly, but it really makes me concerned that the whip will eventually break if not handled with kid gloves.  Next I looked at the model closely and did find some of the tell-tale signs that everyone has been screaming about.  Fortunately, the model didn't have anything deal breaking issues and I will be able to make the necessary repairs. 
I've worked with resin quite a bit and I think there are two basic types of defects, both of which are showing up on the fine cast models.  First is where excess resin protrudes off the model.  This is not so bad if it happens on the edge on on a flat surface as it can be easily clean up.  But if this happens near a detail on the model some portion of the detail will be missing and you typical lose any remaining detail in the process of cleaning up the model.  The other type of defect is the incomplete fill.  This shows up as a portion of the model simply missing or bubbles in the model.  This can sometimes be fixed depending on how bad the problem is.  Simple bubbles can be filled with green stuff.  But if whole portions of the model are missing, say the tip of the sword, there is no way to fix that short of re-sculpting.
I removed the Necrotect from the sprue with hobby clippers.  I was concerned that the delicate portions of the model might break, like near the tip of the whip.  Fortunately that didn't happen.  I also very quickly removed the flashing from the model with the hobby clippers.  Next I was able to clean up the Necrotect model in a matter of minutes with only a hobby knife.  Historically, a metal model would have taken considerable longer and usually required the use of files in addition to the hobby knife.  Finally, I attached his arm and mounted him to the base with regular CA glue (as opposed to plastics glue).
My overall first impressions of Finecast are positive, but it should be taken with a grain of salt as I've specifically avoided the larger, multi piece kits that would be more susceptible defects.  I'm really happy with how the Necrotect turned out so far and I'm looking forward to getting him painted up this weekend.  Also, he does look a lot better than my "custom" Necrotect using parts from the bitz box!

New Gear is Here

The new gear is here just in time for Blood in the Sun.  I can almost hear Domus rolling his eyes now!  :)

Random Musings

Real life has been slowing down the quantity of posts of late.  But that is sure to change with Blood in the Sun now only a week away!
Recently I've been following a discussion on our favorite mailing list about the ramifications of 8th edition on the player base, namely are we gaining or losing players because of 8th edition.  You have already heard that discussion a hundred times.  But what I always find interesting is the guaranteed sub discussion about the increased potential impact of magic and how that is bad for the game.  Whenever that topic comes up it always makes me wonder if some players wouldn't be better off playing historicals.

Jun 25, 2011

BitS Terrain Piece (j/k)

Like many folks I scour the clearance toy racks. The search doesn't always pan out. But today I scored something interesting at Toys R Us. The scale is quite large for Warhammer, but the wall sections are particularly nice. We will see what I end up doing with it. But whatever comes of it I can't really complain for 35 bucks can I?