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 :-)