December 31, 2010

WIP - High Elf unit fillers & making snow

Been working on a couple of unit fillers for my High Elves using some left over basing materials and figures I had in my bits collection. Fillers are 3x2 allowing me to turn a unit of 20 into a unit of 25 without the expense of buying extra models, they also add a little extra to your armies appearance. Only two fillers so far will build 2 more once I can source some more of the pillars in the centre of the current ones. The first model is a mermaid from an alternative supplier called Reaper Mini I had originally purchased with the intent of starting a Nautican army.

Also in pictures are a unit of Spears next on line to be painted and the unit of Archers I am currently working on. Snow flock was applied before painting completed as it makes it easier to tidy things up.

Making Snow
I have tried unsuccessfully to get a snow look using standard GW and GF9 flock but have found that neither product works well on its own. Rather you have to make your own snow material incorporating either product into your mix. The steps I use are:

1. Preparation - make sure the area you are applying the snow to has been painted properly with light colours grey/white. This is critical as the snow will show up, and if made improperly take on, the colour over which it is applied, e.g., if you apply it over a green base the snow will go green.

2. Ingredients - for the snow you will need Baking Soda, PVA Glue (or whatever white glue is used in your country), snow flock, white paint, a container, a stirring stick, and an old brush.

3. Mixing - mix equal parts PVA glue and Baking Soda into the container. Add in a sprinkling of snow flock and a small amount of paint for colour. Stir until everything is well mixed. The final product should look like slightly melted ice-cream and be reasonably thick. Basic test is to dip your stirring stick into it and hold it upside down. The snow should droop down but not drip off the stick. Too runny and you'll lose the colour when applying it to the the base and it wont stick properly.

4. Application - spread with brush, easy ah, and then let dry for a few minutes. Then sprinkle a liberal amount of snow flock over the top of the bases. Dont worry about being tidy just cover (or in my case bury) the models in snow flock, this adds to the final colour. Then dry overnight.

5. Tidying up - in the morning (or whenever) you will need to scrap away any flock that has accumulated around the edge of the bases and on the models (hence why I usually do this before I finish painting). Some paint around the bottom of the models is Ok as it adds to the effect.

6. Final stage - once you have finished painting the model you will need to apply 2-3 very thin watered down coats of white paint over the snow. This helps bind it to the base and improves the colour. Make sure the paint is thinned down or you will pick up all of the snow with your brush. Finally once everything is dry apply a thin coat of sealant over the entire model. GW Purity Seal is OK but inconsistent in quality I much prefer Moana Vale.

7. Enjoy

December 29, 2010

High Elves @ 2400pts and 2 games of 8th

Got in two games of 8th Edition WHFB yesterday against Adam and his Dwarfs. Great fun and a good chance to sort out a workable army list for the 2011 New Zealand tournament season. Ill post the battle reports over the next few days I just need to work out the narrative so I can work them into the previous 8 games Adam and I have played in our War of the Beard grudge series.

High Elves @2400pts

Archmage L4
w. Folraiths Robe, Talisman of Endurance, Silver Wand, Shadow Magic

Avoided the Book of Hoeth as despite its potential I much prefer my mage to stay alive throughout the battle. Silver Wand gives him 5 spells which covers almost the entire lore. Shadow magic is pretty much a given for High Elves and has proved its worth in several games so far.

Mage L2
w. Seerstaff, Opal Amulet, High Magic

Seerstaff allows him to pick 2 spells from the High Magic Lore which is amazingly versatile and very cheap compared to the lores in 8th Edition. Good mix of defensive and offensive options and of course you get Drain Magic thrown in for free.

w. Barded Steed, Dragon Armour, Shield, Halberd, Helm of Fortune, Guardian Phoenix

Exactly the same build I used in 7th Edition. 1+ rerollable AS and 5+WS makes him very survivable and with 3 S5 attacks he can dish out punishment.

Spears x25
w. Full Command

Spears x25
w. Full Command

Archers x14
w. Musician

Big core, opted to go with Spears rather than Sea Guard to keep points to minimum. In 2400pts you already lose one of the special units you would typically take in 7th, e.g., in 7th a 2400pt list would contain 220pts of core - 2 units of 10 archers. In 8th you need 600pts taking 380 away from the Special slot. This removes the White Lions from my list, unfortunate as I love the models.

Phoenix Guard x19
w. Full Command, Razor Standard, Gem of Courage

The anvil of the army list and a unit I want to build up to 24-28 by purchasing another blister or two. The Razor Standard and Step Up make these guys awesome in 8th. Gem of Courage means they will really stick around.

Swordmasters x11
w. Musician

Swordmasters x11
w. Musician

Two units without command is risky as they are missile magnets. But these guys are brilliant although I need to remove the yellow edging on mine.

Dragon Princes x6
w. Full Command, Banner of Ellyrion, Ironcurse Icon

The only unit I will probably change removing the Champion and Standard bearer to keep the unit bare. These guys are really only there as a threat to make opponents change their game plan as without magical boosts (i.e., from Shadow Lore) they are useless in combat.


Once I remove the points from the Dragon Princes I may field two of these guys.

TOTAL 2,399pts

So minor changes here from my typical 7th Ed list, no White Lions and no RBTs the most obvious change. RBTs are great to have but with only 2 wounds the new rules make them very vulnerable.

Battle Reports up soon stay posted as there will be more to come...

December 27, 2010

WIP - High Elf Archers

Got started on these guys again just before Christmas hoping to get them finished this week. Faces havent turned out very well and I really need to strip them back and start again but Ive decided not to be too fussy and leave them as is. Front rank is pretty much done except for a few touch ups here and there, various gems and off course snow on the bases.

After this its a couple more Dragon Princes to finish off, the reins and seat on the Dragon Mage to complete and my High Elves are all done. Just need to put some more modular movement trays together to rank up the Spears 5x5 or 6x4 for flexibility and then its onto the display board.

For that I am thinking of doing a forested hill arcing in a curve around the back half with a frozen river moving through the middle of the board. White Lions, RBTs, Eagles and Dragon go on mountain. Spears, Archers and Swordmasters go on plains to front along with Phoenix Guard etc.

Thought about it last night and Ill build the board to take my entire collection rather than a set tournament army as honestly I havent figured out what that army should look like yet. Getting some practice games in tomorrow though at 2400pts hopefully.

December 13, 2010

Xmas time

Merry Christmas one and all from sunny New Zealand, where we see in the new year and the fat man in the big red suit with sunny skies and hot weather ?!?!?

Nothing really happening on the gaming front right now. Too busy with cricket season and work, and my spare time at the moment is being spent fixing the house, painting the house etc etc etc

However the urge is still there and my High Elves are sitting on the "to-do" shelf with the aim of getting them ready sometime soon.... just need to hang on for a bit longer though

November 25, 2010

Alternative Dwarf miniatures - Mantic Games

A while ago I considered purchasing a range of alternate Dwarf miniatures from a company called Mantic Games. They offered a range of figure types that I liked the look of at extremely competitive prices compared to the standard GW models.

A ranked up unit of Mantic Games Dwarven warriors

The problem with any alternative miniature though is 'scale' while manufacturers do state what scale particular models fit (28mm in the case of WHFB) they do not always match up, much like how Size 11 US and UK shoes are different sizes. Consequently, I have always been reluctant to purchase alternative miniatures not willing to risk ending up with figures that cannot fit into my existing collection.

A painted Mantic Games Dwarven warrior

However, Bugmans Brewery - the primary forum for Dwarf players - has a great thread in which it reviews a large number of alternative suppliers. Reviews that include brief notes on scale issues. In the same part of the forum is a post which offers a great comparison of Mantic vs. GW Dwarfs (click here), probably the best comparison I have seen.

Size comparison BfSP GW Dwarf vs. Mantic Games Dwarf

If I had found this comparison last year I would have seriously considered purchasing a large number of Mantic's miniatures as the price advantages are quite large. But, as I now have all of the figures I need Ill have to put it down as a missed opportunity. However, there is nothing stopping any other Dwarf player out there giving them a go.

November 19, 2010

Fallschirmjager vs. US Armour 1750pts Pictorial Report

Pictorial report the 1750pt LW game I played last night against Josh. I used Fortress Europe as my guide for building the relevant FJ list while Josh was using the new books detailing the German defence of France from June - Dec 1944 (I forget the names). We played the breakthrough scenario, a first for me, and despite some major problems remembering the rules I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

All of the pictures are pretty large so should expand out when clicked on

The battlefield divided into 4 quarters the Fallschirmjager deployed on bottom right and top left. The US armour deployed bottom left and were attempting to breakthrough to the two objectives (Opel Trucks) in the top right of the board.

The Fallschirmjager commander deployed his forces astride the main road in a rough L shape formation hoping to funnel the US Armour past his AT guns, Panzerfausts and onto the guns of the StuGs before the US reserves (reported to be in the rear) arrived.

FJ Pak 40's and HMG teams dig in behind French hedges

Reinforced FJ combat Platoons dug in with supporting Assault Guns behind awaiting the inevitable US assault.

Panzerfaust teams, FJ infantry and a Light recoilless gun occupy a building strongpoint astride the main crossroads through the battelfield

Fallschirmjager dig in on the right flank

US Armour and SP Artillery deploys ready to attack

Fallschirmjager and Pak 40s dug in along the main road.

US Armour makes the opening move attempting to move around the flank of the dug in Fallschirmjager. The presence of the FJ Light Gun platoon causes them to check and change their line of advance.

1st blood as a FJ Pak 40 takes out an advancing Sherman

FJ Artillery observer team dug in with the infantry watches the advancing US armour through their binoculars.

US armoured reserves appear to the rear of the StuGs but despite their advantage they fail to damage any of the German armour which soon gets its revenge.

Revenge is sweet, the undamaged StuGs brew up 2 of the Stuarts and force a 3rd to bail out.

Advancing Shermans get caught by Pak 40's whose LOS was not blocked by nearby smoke barrages and lose 1 of their number.

German assualt guns destroy the remaining US Stuarts but then come under fire from the advancing Shermans, 1 StuG is destroyed and another forced to bail out.

US Infantry reserves arrive to secure the objective. Assaulted by the StuGs and bombarded by Artillery the trained troops somehow hold on as the StuGs are destroyed by the advancing US armour

In a last ditch attempt to stop the US advance a FJ Platoon attempts to assault the US armour but is pinned down after suffering heavy loses to defensive fire.

US Armour advances past burning StuGs bypassing the FJ infantry strongpoints

US Infantry occupy the objectives while the armour moves in. Not a german in sight
With the StuGs and Pak 40s destroyed the Fallschirmjager are unable to stop the US advance and they breakthrough successfully punching a massive hole in the German lines and securing victory.

Fun game but I screwed by not concentrating my forces and moving everybody into guard the objectives. I got preoccupied with them starting out as dug in and concealed and was reluctant to move my infantry out. Deployment, deployment, deployment wins battles :)

November 18, 2010

FOW Army list LW Fallschirmjager 1750pts

Actually getting a game of FOW tonight 1750pts LW, with my new units. Playing against Josh, Dereks son, who is a very good player and from experience he'll probably bring a tank heavy Soviet force.

Going with Fortress Europe as the basis of the list, Hells Highway is cool but if you want to use your StuGs you have to go with Fearless trained infantry units and cant take Artillery.

Fallschirmjager 1750pts - Fortress Europe LW

CHQ, PF/SMG, Mortars (3) - 160pts
FJ Platoon, PF/SMG, 3 Squads - 265pts
FJ Platoon, PF/SMG, 3 Squads - 265pts
FJ AT Platoon, 4 x 75mm Pak 40 - 245pts
FJ Artillery Battery, 2 sections 7.5cm Geb36 - 190pts
FJ Light Gun Platoon - 70pts
FJ HMG Platoon, 2 sections - 170pts
Assault Gun Platoon, 4 StuG Gs - 380pts

7 Platoons, but the HMG will be combat attached to the FJ Platoons 2 HMG to each giving me 6 Platoons in the event that we play a scenario with reserves. Means the FJ Platoons will start the game with 12 stands each which as fearless veteran troops makes them damn hard to break.

No Pioneers as I couldnt fit in the points. Artillery battery is a new one for me as I havent used them before so went with 2 full gun sections, probably overkill but you never know. Light Gun platoon at only 70 pts is a really cheap and effective option. Think of them as a miniature Pak 40 platoon with half the range.

If I have to play a reserve scenario I leave the LG Platoon, AT Platoon and a FJ Platoon off the board. Bit dangerous leaving the AT guns in reserve but it will leave me the StuGs on the board and with the artillery this gives me plenty of AT firepower.

Now I just have to remember the rules been a while since I played.

November 17, 2010

Oh my whats happened to stumpy heaven? Goals for 2011

Quick apology to the wonderful people who read and have read this blog over the last few years. As you have probably guessed I haven't been wargaming or painting for a while now and therefore havent been posting.

Its currently cricket season here in New Zealand and I have just had my PhD enrolment confirmed for 2011 so any spare time I have is now firmly tied up with sport and research/study.

My local gaming club has also shut down for the summer period and wont reopen till Feb, but I personally dont expect to be playing again regularly until the end of March 2011. I do fully intend to get lots of painting done in that period so keep checking as I will be posting just not as regularly.

Anyway, to keep myself focused I have a list of things to try and accomplish for 2011

  1. No more purchases - no Warhammer, no FOW, and no new gaming systems
  2. Finish painting my Fallschirmjager for FOW (Artillery Platoon, Trucks, Pioneers)
  3. Play 5 Warhammer tournaments - first one is in March
  4. Get my Warhammer Fantasy national ranking back into the Top 50 and get my Best Dwarf General title back
  5. Finish painting my High Elf spearmen (28)
  6. Finish painting my High Elf archers (16)
  7. Finish painting my High Elf Dragon Princes (8)
  8. Finish painting my Dwarf Miners (20)
  9. Repaint/touch up/rehighlight all of my dwarfs (umm approx 250!!!)
  10. Play in at least one FOW tournament, most likely Panzershrek 2011 here in Palmy my home town.
The 1st goal is going to be easy to keep as I now have all the figures etc I need for both WHFB and FOW, although I have a serious desire to build an Irish Guards Armoured Company for FOW. I think now though that with my collections being fairly settled its time to seriously look at working on improving the way they look. My High Elf repainting project is pretty much complete and they look really good now, so I think I will start the same process with my Dwarfs.

The Miners are the first unit to get the new look which is a huge improvement on my first painting efforts of 2-3 years back. So starting one unit at a time I will be paint stripping (with Dettol) all of my Dwarfs and redoing them all. Next unit to get the treatment will be my beloved Hammerers.

I would like to get my WHFB ranking back into the top 50, had a high of 47 at one point, but since 8th came out more people seem to playing Dwarfs and there are also some seriously good new Dwarf players on the local tournament scene (Matthew Hassell in particular) and I have dropped into the 70s. I think now that tournaments will be the only time I get to play WHFB as well so I will really endeavour to give them a good go.

My Dwarf army is currently in the hands of a fellow stumpy Adam who has taken them to Auckland for a good outing, hope he gets some enjoyment out of them. FOW will occupy all of my club time next year most likely, unless more WHFB turn up, though and I think it would be fun to play in one tournament with my Fallschrimjager as well.

November 8, 2010

Dwarf Miners Complete

Been a while since I posted anything Warhammer related, but in between painting my FOW Fallschirmjager I have been slowly working away at my Dwarfs. The Miner regiment is now half done and I have two units of Thunderers next in line for the repainting and basing treatment.
Couple of little things need tidying up on these guys but overall I am pretty happy with them. Under 8th they will get a permanent place in my army from now on.

Pictures are pretty large so click on them to get the full effect.

October 29, 2010