Sunday, December 2, 2012

Painted Dark Vengeance Librarian.

Hi folks,

Not too much going on in my gaming world at the moment but I have managed to get some painting done. 

My librarian went from this...

To this...

Thought it's not shown here yet, I used some green stuff to block out the base and then painted that with a simple earth brown tones and now the Deathwing librarian in power armour is ready to kick butt. I was asked about the greens by my friends as they liked the vibrancy and it's a base coat of P3 Gnarl's Green, a darker wash/paint into the creases, then a series of mixes of Gnarl's Green and P3 Iosan Green to bring up the brightness. I like this a lot more than the chalky look you get with adding white/bone highlights to green.

Now that I've had a chance to handle the Dark Vengeance models a bit more, I have to say that this one is definitely one of the best of them. 

I got to the gaming store for a bit over the weekend to give a quick demonstration game to my student. We played a board game in our English classes last week and instead of using paper markers or the like, I decided to take in my Deathwing for them to use as playing pieces. They were a big hit and he decided to come down to the game store to see what it's all about. Here he is, on the right, watching a showdown between Imperial Guard and Orks. 

I didn't get pictures of the game in progress but I managed to snap a quick one of the Deff Dread stomping through the forest en route to the Guard's battle lines. 

I hope everyone is doing well and looking forward to Christmas.


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Christmas Warmachine & HORDES Deals!

Hi everyone,

While I haven't yet managed to find a playing group to enjoy the game with, I'm very interested in Privateer Press' Warmachine & HORDES games. 

My temptation just jumped up a notch seeing their Christmas bundles.

Here's an example for Khador.

So you get out there with your warcaster, two heavy Jacks, a support piece, some heavy infantry and some snipers too. To support the models they throw in the token set and a mini rulebook. Not to mention the little Christmas ornament :-)

I also love the Circle Orboros deal full of stone construct goodness (though I do love warpwolves too).

Now if you agree that these are great deals then head over to the Privateer Press store pronto. If you spend over $200 then you will get a Coleman Stryker action figure included for free as long as stocks last. Now this may not be something that works for you personally but I'm sure you could find a son/younger brother/cousin etc. who'd love to have this for Christmas. Who knows, they may even come asking you for an intro game later on when they're old enough for the big toys. 
All the best,


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Models or money???

Following up to my Dreadfleet game I talked with my buddy about my stash of Grey Knight terminators. I traded my Tau army for some 20 odd metal terminators, Captain sterns and brother captains when I left America. At the time I needed to get rid of bulky things so that I had space in my luggage for all of the other bits I had to bring back to England. 

I've been carrying around the Grey Knights ever since I left America with a vague future plan to make a Draigowing army and so on. Last night was my crunch time when I decided that I wasn't realistically going to do it any time soon and I would rather see my models in the hands of someone who would really use and appreciate them.

The question is.....sell or trade the models.

Last night I sold the painted power armour grey knights I have and also got the Dark Vengeance librarian above in trade. It's nice and as I looked at the other Dark Angel models I realised that: I'm tired of painting Deathwing so I want a change, the Captain model is much like the finecast captain I have, my buddy is using the power armour marines for painting technique test models and the Ravenwing just don't excite me. I've been offered the Ltd edition chaplain and that might be a cool trade model but then there's the other good thing.

Matus has a whole, mostly still boxed, Dark Eldar army he's happy to trade to me. We haven't worked out exactly what would be a fair amount but I'm very tempted. It has a few Raiders, a couple of Venoms, three Ravagers, several sets of Wyches and Warriors, some Hellions and a few Reaver jetbikes (battleforce parts). 

I'm really tempted by these models to have a very different army with a totally changed playing style. Some part of me is getting bored with marching big 2+ armour save models around the field and trying to get into combat so my Thunderhammers can smash things. I am really interested in playing a fast moving army that jumps from place to place and is a glass cannon.

So that's cool.

On the other hand, do I really need more models? Do I need to spend time painting a whole new 50+ models? Shouldn't I rather take some cash and use that for more 'grown up' activities like holidays or savings? What about transporting those annoyingly shaped Dark Eldar transports? 

I'm not sure yet. I guess the best thing to do is to figure out exactly what is a good trade from my buddy's side and then make a decision from there.

All the best to everyone and opinions are appreciated.

Pete :-)

A quick Dreadfleet battle report.

Hi all,

Thanks to getting out and about in the local gaming shop I found a new gaming buddy who lives about 100m from our building. We've been playing a few games of 40k since we live so close and last night we managed to get together again and thrown down for some Dreadfleet fun.

I didn't introduce all of the rules because it would have been a steep learning curve so for this game, we ignored the wind changes, the random fate card effects and some of the shooting modifiers. Instead we went with a fairly basic kill-em-all battle setup with the islands placed in the middle.

My buddy and his wife decided to take the bad guys and I got to play the good guys for once. As you can see, I'm not finished with the painting but slowly the set is starting to come together and look better. 

The funky seascape map hung over the edge of the table but we still had most of the playing area to work with. 

Who does not like to play boardgames with CAKE?

The Heldenhammer (good flagship) and the Blood Reaver (bad flagship) got into a close range broadside match. Sadly the Heldenhammer ended up with too much damage to keep going as it was battered by almost the entire Dreadfleet over a couple of turns. As my wounded captain tried frantically to issue enough repair orders, we were dealing with a collapsed gun deck (reducing broadsides), a dead first mate (reducing command rolls), two fires on board, a hole below the waterline, dead crew, smashed sails and a battered hull. In the end, it was just too much for the proud vessel and it slipped below the waves.

The last gasp of the game. After much fighting and mayhem in the middle and ships sinking left and right, the plucky dwarves, having slowly made their way to the battleground managed to shoot the Blood Reaver, board, kill the captain in a duel, win the boarding action, push off and shoot again to sink the enemy flagship, then ended up in a distant gunnery duel against the ghost ship, Shadewraith. Despite the difficulty in hitting their ghostly foe (you need a 6+ at any range) the dwarves had more guns and more armour to hold on for the final victory. My first ever win in Dreadfleet :-)

I know this game got a really bad rap when it came out and, while I'm not saying that it rewrites the book on quality games, it is fun to play. If you have a friend who has a set or find it on sale (some shops still stock it), then give it a go and I think you will enjoy it. I tend to think of it as more of a board game than a wargame but either way it goes down well with me. I like the variety of painting the different models too so there is a thumbs up on the that front as well.

All the best


Friday, October 26, 2012

My girlfriend loves me and my I made new friends.

Hi everyone,

I'm about to embark on a very ambitious project, the WIP of which will be recorded on Old Shatter Hands blog so that it remains secret should my girlfriend happen to click over to this blog since it's a christmas thing. 

Before I go and write a post or two for that blog, I just have to point out how awesome she is. I went out to work and she had to head back to her hometown for a family celebration. I was busy with meetings, lesson planning and teaching so I didn't get to say good bye except in the morning. When I got home I found the following vandalism to my painting area...

That's right, she stuck "I love you" notes all over my work space, my paints (well, the P3 ones at least), my brushes, my water, my Masters Brush Cleaner and even over a couple of terminators. Needless to say, this perked my day up significantly. 

In other news I finally found an art shop that had beads heavy enough to act as mixers for my paints. Stick one of these in and it'll help rattle up the paint, even those that have separated quite badly from sitting on shop shelves for a long time. Thanks to my students I also learned the Slovak word for ball bearings - Ložisko. I was checking hardware stores for these for a while but since I lacked the vocabulary I was doing my best asking for small balls from metal. I dread to think what the shop staff thought I wanted :-)

Take care all and look out for the WIP stuff coming soon.


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Thoughts after my first game of 6th Edition - How do the Deathwing fare?

So, sixth edition....what's it like?

I got to play my first game yesterday and it was against the new kids on the block - Chaos.

It was fun to get involved with a local gaming group and I'm sure that I'll be back again to enjoy some wargaming with them. Thankfully most people spoke at least some English though a lot of the games were narrated in Slovak with the amusing bits of English thrown in. Here's my example to give you an idea.

"Oni budú ist tam...náročný terén.  potrebojem štyri plus. Psychic test. Ma leadership deväť tak..."
"They will move there...difficult terrain. I need a four plus. Psychic test. He has leadership nine so..."

The game was a ~1750 point game. I think I was underpointed as I didn't tally up my list fully and if I recall correctly it comes to 1535. 

  • Belial. Librarian in terminator armour.
  • Command squad. All TH/SS, cyclone, apothecary and banner.
  • 2 assault squads. Sergeant with LC, 4xTH/SS and cyclone.
  • 2 shooting squads. Assault cannons and one chainfist.

The chaos forces were (off the top of my head)
  • Huron Blackheart. Chaos lord with jump pack, LCs and various bits (invul save, FNP)
  • 12 raptors, PF champion, FNP, 2 meltas
  • 15 noise marines, blastmaster, doomsiren champion, FNP
  • 9 marines in a rhino, melta, mark of nurgle
  • Defiler
  • Forgefiend with two ectoplasm cannons.

Here's the forgefiend model....being fiendish. My opponent had the whole
thing magnetised so he could swap configurations easily.

It's a nice kit but not as big or impressive as I first thought it might be.
I'm not sure I'd feel happy about dropping 40 quid on it.

My opponent got to infiltrate a lot of units due to Huron. It was a bit of a challenge to deal with so many things right in my face at the start of the game. Unlike normally, I didn't deep strike much. In fact, this is when I learned that you can only reserve half of your army in this edition, which does take some wind out of the Deathwing assault sails.

The deployment zone. That Fortress of Redemption is really big. I have to
say though that when injection moulded kits get so big the detail seems to get
a bit less impressive. The angel statues are very plain when unpainted.

Here is one squad about to get shot to pieces by the Noise marines. 

Basically on the left flank, the 15 noise marines with fearless and FNP just put a brutal amount of firepower down against the terminator squads and torrented them badly. It took two full squads to advance and get close enough to make an assault move. We slowly ground them down in assault but by then Huron and his crew had moved up to wipe out the survivors. The forgefiend spent some time blowing up terminators with his plasma cannons then moved back to avoid the assault.

The command squad and another group ready to enter the fray.

About to contact the raptor squad. This is the start of my command squad
being tied up for the rest of the game because of a challenge. Not my 
favourite rule to be honest.

On the other side we smacked the Raptors around but due to the new challenge rules it ended with Belial (2+ save & FNP) fighting the Chaos lord (4+ invul. & FNP) while three TH/SS terminators and the librarian kicked their heels and watched. Instead of smacking the lord's head in with a thunder hammer they had to cheer weakly (you don't even get a bonus unless you have five or more models watching. It was my fault in a way for getting the challenge going but then again it is a new rule so I wasn't quite aware of the repercussions.

6th Edition and Deathwing

Generally speaking the game hasn't changed too much but it did feel a bit unusual for me. Shooting is a lot more powerful now, especially since assaulters can be overwatch shot as though they had run forwards even though they won't move from their spot. That's one thing that bugs me more now than in 5th edition. I try to charge, I get shot at and hurt, then my guys don't even move from their spot so that next turn my opponents move back and I'm in the same boat again. I guess I've just not adapted to the methods yet and the Deathwing will have to be altered.

I noticed that my lack of firepower is really a problem in a lot of ways. I can't reliable put multiple hits on a vehicle enough to take it out. A couple of times I considered taking pot shots at the defiler/forgefiend but it didn't seem worth it since a glance knocks off a hull point rather than having a chance to wreck a gun like 5th edition glancing hits. If I had more long range guns it could help out so that may be the way to expand in future.

Challenges are a bit of a funny beast. I think that if you have a killy character it can be a really great way to take out special character on the other side or deny them attacks if they refuse the challenge. That said with a leader who is fairly average (like Belial) and is just carrying a basic weapon you can end up with a whole unit tar-pitted simply because the combat isn't getting resolved either way. In this case we had two characters with ok weapons, good saves and FNP who just couldn't take each other out fast enough. Perhaps it'd be better to give Belial a Thunder hammer but I don't really want to hack up a nice model.

I was a bit lost with the warlord traits and psychic powers. The randomness and having to remember them was new and they slipped my mind in game. I didn't really plan and take advantage of them properly. I think that in many ways this game was a bit in at the deep end and so I didn't use the options available to me in quite the best way. Still, that's to be expected from the first couple of times trying out a new ruleset. I was a bit annoyed at this game, or at myself for not being up to speed yet, but no biggie :-)

Thanks for reading


Thursday, October 18, 2012

Wayland Games & Privateer Press. Awesome customer service.

Just a quick post from me since I'm spending my time clearing the painting decks ready for a big, challenging project. The details won't be put up here as it's a secret but will be hosted on a popular site named for the blue-skinned Crisis suit wielding aliens ;-)

I have to say a big thank you and thumbs up to Privateer Press and Wayland games.

The former got me the replacement paints for the mispacked boxes from the west coast of America to Slovakia in two weeks. Perhaps not super high speed but they were courteous and helpful in making things work out just fine. Great work from a company whose paints I'm getting more and more interested in using. I've gone from about 5% P3 to about 45% P3 in my collection as the GW paints dry out or get used up.

Wayland games is awesome for having a solid webstore, good prices and carrying out a warehouse move without all of the stock loss/hassle/shenanigans that seem to plaguing another popular retailer at the moment. I dropped them an email about my order's shipping date (materials for the secret project) and they responded promptly, apologising for the slower than desired shipping. They explained that it was due to the warehouse move. I thanked them and asked if there was any way to bump the shipping date up because of the amount of work I need to do on the project and its importance. I also stressed that I would not be upset at all should it not happen but they went ahead and shipped the order the next day, which is just great.

So...let's say it a few more times.

Wayland Games is awesome
Wayland Games is awesome
Wayland Games is awesome

Take care all ;-)


Friday, October 5, 2012

Mispacked paints, Norwegian Adventures and a miniature hunting challenge

Hey everyone,

There's not a lot of energy in my life at the moment for blogging but I aim to improve that. Basically work is very busy and this last month has been a relentless barrage of trips and visits to various places. I've been to the High Tatra mountains, had a weekend at a wedding in southern Slovakia, went to Bojnice (a city with a pretty zoo) got in a game of 40k and spent the last weekend in Norway for a family reunion and birthday celebration. All of these are in addition to a full time teaching job with funny hours ;-)

That said I'm enjoying life and trying to put some time into painting my army up. Looking at the photos of my game reminded me of how nice it is to see a painted force on the table. I think what's helping is that I've cleared the halfway point with the army and once I get the bone armour done on the next two squads the real grunt work is finished. Next on my list is clearing the backlog of dreadfleet models plus a very special modelling project (more to come on that later as I'll need help/advice). 

My mispacked paints (in the front). The one on the left has the
wrong label and might be the wrong colour. The one on the right 
is the wrong shade of brown. A useful brown, granted, but not the
one that was supposed to be in the box.

I got some P3 paint sets recently with the aim of expanding my colours and also working more with this brand, as I like it a lot. It's got good consistency, nice flow and covers well. I prefer the pots to the GW pots that I have as well. Unfortunately there were two mispacks in the boxes that I contacted Privateer Press about. The ticket was submitted into their portal on the 1st of October and was listed as shipping as of yesterday (Oct 4th), so I can't fault their turnaround. Now it's just down to seeing how long it takes to get from Washington to Bratislava :-)

My Norwegian weekend was a lot of fun and I got to meet many family members I hadn't gotten to know before. We had a lot of food, gave birthday wishes to dad and my uncle Bjorn, and then spent the day sightseeing in Oslo. It's a great country to visit but really REALLY expensive, especially compared to Slovakia. Going from Eu1-1.50 for a beer to somewhere more like 8 Euros for a beer was a bit tough. However the emergency taxi ride took the cake entirely.

We got on the train to the wrong airport in Oslo (North, not South). It was down to the wire, no way to get to the right airport in time using the trains so a taxi was the only way. 120km at high speed cost me and my sister the absolutely scalping sum of ~310 Euros!!!

And you thought that GW was expensive ;-)

Me, my uncle Bjorn and my dad at the Viking ship museum in Oslo

That's all for now but I have a very challenging and very important project coming up that I'll need bloggers help for. 

I want to make a very special sculpted piece on a display base. I think I can sculpt what I want for the base but there is no way I can make figures look even half decent. I have one of the figures sorted out but the other has eluded me thus far.

I need a kneeling male fantasy figure. I think the most likely is a fantasy knight, perhaps offering up his sword and I'm sure I've seen one before thought I can think of where.

Anyone who can help would be much appreciated :-)


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Deathwing's final 5th edition march to war

This the last (5th edition) march of the Deathwing.....

These are not my Deathwing.

But these are my Deathwing. Notice the slowly increasing numbers
of painted models.

Well this weekend, in my quest to actually use and enjoy my models instead of just having them around I managed to schedule another game against my colleague. Since neither of us has really played recently we decided to take the 5th edition rules out for another spin. When I finally get around to ordering Dark Vengeance or playing at the game store where people can teach me (I hope the language barrier will only cause humourous misunderstandings) I'll switch up to the new rules.

Edina admires Aaron's models because they are fun and 
a different colour to my 'bone guys'. 

Aaron's triple lascannon predator and winged, lash daemon prince.

Raptors, terminators and noise marines ready for battle.

I did a normal deployment with two shooty squads plus the librarian
on the field, the latter for anti-lash defences. We were playing an objective
game and I did the old trick of putting the objectives where I planned to
go and not on my side. I knew I needed to get into assault and there are
three objectives near Aaron (the white dice cube, one under the troops
in his hand, one behind the paper ream, one to the left of the red up and
the conker next to my left squad). I figured I would teleport in and take 
the ones in his lines while holding the middle ones with the shooting squads.

This is somewhere in turn 2 because I have all of my guys on the field. Aaron
kept his terminators and raptors back to deep strike, and the chosen outflanked
in their rhino. As usual when facing a spread out force, I dumped my whole 
force on one flank. It feels a bit unfair sometimes but it's a good way to deal with
the lack of firepower for Deathwing and your lack of mobility. If I can put ~1500pts
against 700-1000 then I've got a big advantage. This time Aaron's havocs and Predator
 were forced to spend a few turns moving back into LOS to fire. 

Luckily for me Aaron forgot to move the Daemon Prince in his first turn
because of his eagerness to shoot my guys. This let me gang up on it totally
unfairly....the best way to deal with such a fast and dangerous monster. It still
took a couple of turns for the squads to bring it down. Him making six out of nine
5+ invulnerable saves was annoying but gave the fight a good epic feel. 

I'd split Belial off the command squad earlier to add more threat options. He 
wiped out a depleted chaos marine squad then went in against four marines and
their power fist sergeant. Despite killing three of them, he failed to get the champion
and took an instant death punch to the face in return. Still, the champion ended up being
Aaron's only scoring unit by the game's end so it wasn't a bad move. 

By mid-late game I'd put Aaron in a bad position where most of his units were too
far away to contest or score and the Deathwing were firmly in control of all but one
objective. The raptors jumped in close to threaten but, in the open, took a bit too much
firepower to be effective. They withdrew. The terminators deep struck but Aaron kept them
back to use their firepower instead of putting them in the middle of the Deathwing, where
they could have been attacked on all sides.

The endgame photo. The Deathwing took a few losses but only Belial was a killpoint. 
We held four of five objectives and were keeping Aaron's last forces at bay. 

Overall it was another fun game against a Chaos force. We discussed the battle afterwards and figured out some alternative ideas for Aaron against the Deathwing. For me, once three squads were in reserve to deep strike I would have kept my whole force on the field and castled on the three objectives near my home base. That would give me maximum firepower on the approaching terminators and keep my assault units (prince and terminators) near my troops so that if my weakened squads got close, they could be attacked and finished off. When you have a deathwing army coming at you with deep striking, spreading out into a thin line is often a bad idea. Most armies are not fast enough to completely redeploy to the other flank in time and every turn you do that is wasted as far as damage dealing goes.

We're looking forward to trying 6th edition and seeing how it changes up our armies and how they play. For me, I'm happy about the nerf to power weapons but uncertain how much will go against or help the Deathwing. We'll see when I get a chance to play.

All the best,


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The reason I've not been painting much. Plus NERDRAGE!!11!

Hi everyone,

Sorry I've not been updating the painting pictures much recently. It was my birthday on Monday 3rd and I'm now 28 years young (as I like to say). I was working all day but we spent the weekend in the High Tatra mountains enjoying the scenery. As you can imagine, I didn't have much time to get the paintbrushes out and play. Since getting back I've put a bit of paint to plastic but not as much as I would have liked to. 
Here's me and some mountains ;-)

Here is the latest picture of my Deathwing squad. I'm glad that I don't have many
lightning claw models because painting the electric effect on those little blades is really
annoying compared to the hammers. Still, these guys are progressing nicely and I won't
need much time to finish them. That will leave me with 3 more squads in total to finish, which 
is a lot but at least I'm making progress :-)


Since starting this post I've been busy but managed to progress more and
 finish off this squad. I think there are a few bits and pieces here that I'd still
like to touch up, but for now it's good to have them done. I love the lightning
effect but it's a bugger to apply to lots of models. I'm looking forward to painting
the shooting squads where I'll only have a single power weapon to electrify :-)


I had this recently. It's annoying because I was on such a high with the hobby and got a bit knocked down from that perch. 

I ordered the limited edition Dark Vengeance box from Maelstrom games as soon as I could after the preorders went up (the day after....too slow as I found out). Unlike every other webstore that was sold out, they were accepting more orders. Great, I thought. Only later, after I avoided checking other stores do I receive an email saying:


We are contacting you regarding your recent order of the Warhammer 40,00 Dark Vengeance limited edition box set. Unfortunately we regret to inform you that Games Workshop have completely sold out of this limited edition set and we shall not be able to obtain stock of this item beyond our initial allocation.

We understand that this may come as a disappointment and inconvenience to our customers. And in light of this, we would like to offer you a choice of how we can process your order:

1. You may cancel your order for a full refund either to store credit (moneyback) or to your original payment method.

2. You have the option to switch your order to the standard version of Dark Vengeance. We will of course refund the price difference between the two sets to your store credit account. See below for an FAQ.

Now I'm not sure who to get more annoyed at but there was a bit of Nerdrage for GW, who seemed to be locking down the cheaper retailers, perhaps to drive sales to their stores with a great profit margin. I also got fairly annoyed at Maelstrom games for continuing to take orders despite knowing that there was a limited amount and this situation could come up.

As it is, my order of DV has been delayed for a few days/weeks until I can muster up the enthusiasm to buy it. Oh well, at least it'll give me time to clear the decks of painting.

I'm not sure I'll order from Maelstrom this time....we'll see.

All the best


Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Golden Age of Wargaming.

Hi everyone,

So I think it's time for a lengthier than usual post about a big topic - The Golden Age of Wargaming.

Now to many of the older gamers who fondly look back upon the earlier days of GW when White Dwarf had more hobby content and less advertising, specialist games were flourishing, there was a solid bits service by GW, the prices were lower, the beer was colder, the grass greener etc., that represents the golden age.

This is not wargaming, it is beer...however, I live in Slovakia, where the
 local brew is great and my wargaming is fun. Beer with a game....mmmmm

I think it's now.

Contentious perhaps but I believe I can support my opinion. Let's take a look at why.

40k has sixth edition.
Here's a ruleset that seems to have people enjoying the game a lot more, whether it be cutthroat tournament play or the more casual scene. 6th edition seems to make for easy cinematic games, people can take allies, which lets you collect more of what you want to collect without the big investment, introduces fliers for more fun on the tabletop. Last, but by no means least, it comes in the form of a fantastic boxed set in Dark Vengeance. 

I think the future is bright (ironically) for 40k and GW in this sense. They are stepping up model quality, as always, look to have moved to a more complete release format, perhaps due to the Chapterhouse lawsuit, the rules are fun to play with and in general, the interwebs seem to be happy with 40k.

Warmachine & Hordes have gone colossal.

As probably the second biggest wargaming company out there, Privateer Press continues to develop and grow. The big news recently was their release of the colossals and gargantuans for the players who want a centrepiece model that just doesn't get any bigger. Combined with the ever moving story line, solid Mk2 rules and a shift to plastic models, PP looks set to continue to with what they do best. They''ve also got two really solid starter sets for their core games of Warmachine and Hordes.

They are nicely diversifying too with the release of the Iron Kingdoms RPG and Escape from Level 7 board game.

Dropzone commander has just dropped in.

Here is a game that seems to be taking people by storm. It's got fantastic models with real variety between factions, the dropships are actually big enough to carry units (and have mounting points), good gameplay and just a nice fresh vibe for everyone to enjoy. I love the models and I'll keep an eye out for anyone playing this locally. 

Infinity has a new campaign book, and consistently gorgeous models.

Infinity is growing as a skirmish wargame and I hear more and more about what is going on with it. The models are fantastic and when I got to handle some in person I was extremely impressed by the casting quality, especially given their extremely delicate size. I want to pick up a starter set of this and get some games in for sure. 

Malifaux gets weirder and more wonderful.

Check this lady out. She's shooting a flaming skull out of her hand and looking pretty awesome doing so. As one of the few games that doesn't work with dice, I'm really interested to try out Malifaux but, as ever, limited budget and play time means I'll put it on hold until I find if there is a local scene for it. 

But the older days were better, weren't they?

I think a major part of what is shifting is that in earlier days, Games Workshop basically was the wargaming hobby. They offered the big, core games but also the smaller specialist games, hobby advice and a lot more of the less tangible things. That still happens in GW but has been tempered by their business model now, which focuses on their core lines and making them the best way to sell admittedly excellent plastic models. At the moment, I think few companies can match GW for quality and consistency of plastic models, and fewer still can hope to offer a similar range. That said, the role of variety in the wargaming falls less to GW now and more to the other companies who are on the rise:

40k/WFB/LOTR          - Games Workshop
WM/Hordes                 - Privateer Press
Flames of War              - Battlefront
Infinity                         - Corvus Belli
Dropzone Commander   - Hawk Wargames
Malifaux                        - Wyrd Miniatures

WFB/40k                      - Mantic Games
Fantasy/Sci fi                 - Reaper, especially with their bones kickstarter
Fantasy/Sci fi/Post apoc   - Ramshackle Games

I'm sure that there are many more I've missed out on and no offence is intended to the companies that are out there.

But....but.....GW is evil and expensive. 

I think, and hope, that the signs we're getting are accurate as it seems to me that GW are listening more to their hobbyists and working at least towards giving us what we ask for. The rules have been tightened, allies are in, the fun has been bumped upwards, the models continue to impress and the latest word is that White Dwarf, which is already adding rules and expansions for the game,  is moving to a new publishing base where they can deliver more value and less of a catalogue of advertising. Fingers crossed on that.

Is Games Workshop expensive?


Are the prices ridiculous?

I don't think so, at least for the most part. There are some models that are pretty silly in price (Blood knights for example) but overall they offer pretty solid value for money, as long as you're not going crazy and building big armies. Perhaps it's just that I've curbed my spending in a bit and tend to collect now in the way that GW promotes (get a starter, add a unit, paint, add another etc.).

Also, if GW is too expensive for you, now is the time to branch out to other games with much lower cost of entry. You've got a wealth of game types, models, rules and styles to get involved in, from the near(ish) future skirmish of Infinity, to the Steampunk naval Dystopian Wars, through Malifaux's weird and wonderful, the steam and iron of Warmachine and many more besides.

If you love gaming, now is the time to enjoy the Golden Age of what is on offer.

All the best,


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

20 minute painting update, a spillage and the army in full.

I'm still here and still painting. It's approaching that busy time of year when the new courses begin at the language school but for now my schedule is quiet and so I'm trying to paint a fair bit. Unfortunately I've finally discovered the Half Life 2 series, or finally allowed myself the time to play it. It's really good and is competing with my wargaming time. If you haven't tried it yet I can recommend it as one of the best-written, compelling to play and developed video games that I've ever experienced.

That said, on to the painting.

This is where we started. The turtle skeleton Dreadfleet terrain piece,
a dwarf ironclad and two Deathwing with armour done. 

Here I've done the water and started to block out the colour on the turtle,
I washed the ironclad with Devlan prior to the next highlight and did the 
crux terminatus and fur highlights for the terminators.

Then DISASTER! My menoth white highlight takes a tumble. Luckily
all models are missed with the exception of the terminator's base you can
see in the background. I got a good amount of paint back into the pot so it's
not a complete loss. I've done some more on the terminators too.

Progress Check

Here is my Deathwing army (plus a buddy painted by Edina). Belial and the
librarian are done, as are the command squad. One of the assault squads is 
getting there, one shooty squad is done, at least with armour, leaving two entire
squads yet to be done. Still, it's nice to see them all lined up.

All the best

Pete :-)