December 30, 2012

30/40k Word Bearers Tactical Squad Complete

Finished (except for basing) last 10 of my first 15 Chaos Space Marines as part of the "Tale of X Gamers: The Horus Heresy Edition" project.  So far I've completed painting:
  • 5 x Forgeworld MkIII Legion Iron armoured Marines w. Phobos & GW Bolters
  • 5 x Forgeworld MkIV Legion armoured Marines w. Phobos & GW Bolters, FW MkIV Cmd upgrade set and Sergeant with GW Chainsword.
  • 5 x GW MkVII - Champion w. Bolt-Pistol & Chainsword
Also working on the background history to my army list to help with the creation of my list for the Horus Heresy campaign event in Nov 2013. Anyway here's A LOT of pictures of my recently completed stuff, have included all 3 model types for comparison.

One change made to later efforts has been paint scheme on Bolters.  Originally this was straight Bolt-Gun metal with Black Wash.  Now I've done parts in Metal, others in Codex Grey and then washed it and its turned out better.  Later efforts dont look as good as the original MkIII models because of the sculpts but also because I didnt write down my process (my usual practice) and couldnt replicate it for the MkIV and MkVII armoured guys.

From right to left - GW MkVII, Forgeworld MkIV and Forgeworld MKIII
Grey + Metal finish on left, straight metal finish on right

December 29, 2012

Chaos Space Marines Codex: First Impressions

Recieved my copy of the 6th Edition Chaos Space Marines codex in the mail yesterday.  Vagabond games were having a Boxing Day sale and I couldnt help myself.  Extremely impressed with the delivery time to, I placed the order on Thursday afternoon and the book arrived by Courier on Friday morning. 

Spent most of last night reading it while watching the HRV Cup (Domestic 20/20 cricket for the non-NZers out there) and its a very impressive piece of work.  Initial impressions though are that compared to WHFB and FOW its also extremely complicated.  The number of special rules in 40k is huge and the nature of skirmish games is such that unit rules/composition are equally complicated.  Its going to take me a while to figure everything out but the artwork especially has already given me some solid ideas as has the fluff.

Overall 30/40k is going to be fun departure from WHFB & FOW and I'm looking forward to spending some time over the next 12 months building up my 30k 1500pt Word Bearers and eventually a Word Bearer themed 40k list.  I think sorting out some fluff for my army is going to be a good starting point and at this stage I am considering theming the army around an independent Word Bearers company that post-heresy became separated from the rest of the legion.  This will allow me leeway to include HH era Forgeworld models (for the original HH era company) and GW models (for corrupted Space Marine chapters added to the company's roster over time).

Also interesting to note the differences between Forgeworlds army composition rules and those of the later GW codex particularly the absence of the command squad - which isnt in the new codex (unless I missed something) and of course all the daemons. 

Would also like to welcome NZ WHFB Masters player Hamish Forbes to my part of the country - an Ogre/Orc player Hamish and his family are in the process of moving down here and Im looking forward to seeing him at our local club once he's settled.  It will certainly shake things up....

December 19, 2012

Battlefront FOW Open Fire Starter Set for the Win!!!

The Manawatu Duellists (my local club) had its last night of the year last Thursday and as well as a great game of WHFB (Ogres vs. Beasts - Report up tomorrow) we also had a little swap meet were we exchanged various elements of the new Battlefront starter set for FOW - Open Fire.  Through the clubs contacts we were able to get a slight discount on the set and a large number of us took up the offer.
 Battlefront have done themselves proud with this set.  The free give away of the small v3 rulebook was a stroke of genius and the new plastic sculpts coming out are simply outstanding.  They have gone one further with this new starter set and compared to GW IoB or the old BfSP sets its light years ahead.  Each set gives you (all in plastic):
  • 6 Shermans
  • 2 Sherman Fireflys
  • 3 StuGs
  • 2 Pak 40s
  • 2 Platoons of PzGrenadiers (73 figures)
  • 1 Platoon of US Paras (32 figurea s)
  • a V1 rocket on launcher
  • A small v3 Rulebook (meaning I can get this one bound professionally, unlike my first copy which got rough treatment at the hands of some 18yr shop assistant)
  • Flat cardboard terrain features (4 forests, a village and some walls)
  • US and German tokens e.g. dug in, pinned etc.
  • US and German dice.
  • Army briefings for a US Para Platoon, British Armoured Company and PzGrenadier company.
  • Easy to follow instructions for assembling everything.
  • Magnets for building the tanks.
And to top it all off because of delays caused by New Zealand customs Battlefront have also decided to give away a free book with each set sold, in my case I opted for "Know your Enemy". 

As I have enough Germans I decided to keep the Shermans and US Paras with the aim of building a US Parachute/Irish Guards list from Hells Highway to complement my Fallschirmjager built from the same briefing.

The club swap meet saw me give Tom all of my German stuff (except for the V1 which I wanted to keep) for all of his Shermans and Paras.  So for the grand sum of $85 I now have approx 1800-2000pts of:
  • 12x Shermans
  • 4 x Sherman Fireflys
  • 2 x Platoons of US Paras
Not bad at all... going to keep me busy over the School Holidays while Im at home with my oldest, and brings back memories of building Airfix and Matchbox models 25+ years ago as a kid.

In the interests of balance I have to point out the one and only negative with the Starter Set and thats that the infantry figures - German, US and British tank commanders - all came on the same sprues making it hard to tell them apart.  There was a letter coding system for them but I only noticed that after I had finished clipping them all out, but it would have been simplier I think for BF to put the Allied guys on one sprue and the Germans on another.

That being said the sculpts are great - not 100% perfect - but pretty damn good, and the new slotted bases are excellent.

My final haul!!!!

December 14, 2012

Isabella von Carstein - Finecast vs. Metal

Finished a little side project the other night, painting up the new finecast version of Isabella von Carstein for a club mates Vampire Count army.  Found it pretty interesting as the old GW Metal version of Isabella is the only model from my previously quite large VC collection that I kept when I sold it all approx. two years ago. 
Finecast version of Isabella von Carstein

The two models are quite different the facial features on the new model are far more refined and life like although it was much harder to paint the eyes and mouth on the finecast version.  Metal Isabella is also bigger and I guess not as lady like as Finecast Isabella although I prefer the extra detailing on Metal Isabella more e.g. bones, skulls and additional layers of clothing. 


Finecast on the left - GW Metal on the right
Colour scheme wise the models are different as Reagan wanted his Isabella to be purple whereas my Vampire Counts were dominated by a red colour scheme, that and i wanted to make her seem less alive than the metal version hence the grey vs. normal coloured skin.

Personally I'd prefer the Finecast figure to have a dress like the original metal version but it looks Ok either way.

December 13, 2012

30k Word Bearers 1500pts v2 & what figure for the Praetor/Chaplain

Had a couple of tips from Bolter & Chainsword forum and last post - will do some more reading today and have modified my list from yesterday hoping to add some more suitable anti-vehicle capable heavy weapons. 
Legion Praetor - 125pts
w. Artificer armour, Frag & krak, Volkite Charger, Plasma Pistol, Chainsword

Command Squad - 155pts
w. Chosen - Chainsword, Power Weapon, Bolter; Chosen - Plasma Pistol, Bolter, Chainsword; Chosen - Chainsword, Volkite Charger, Bolt-Pistol; Std. Bearer

Tactical Squad - 235pts
w. 15 x Marines, Vox, Vex, Chainswords, Bolt-Pistols, Sergeant w. Powerfist

Tactical Squad - 230pts
w. 15 x Marines, Vox, Vex, Bolters & Bolt-Pistols, Sergeant w. Plasma Weapon

Apothecary - 80pts
w. Scanner, Volkite Charger, Artificer Armour

Apothecary - 80pts
w. Scanner, Volkite Charger, Artificer Armour

Terminators - 235pts
w. 5 x Terminators, 1 x Plasma Blaster

Dreadnought Talon - 175pts
w. Plasma Cannon, 2 x HK Missiles, Twin-Bolter with Chainfist, Extra Armour

Dreadnought Talon - 185pts
w. Plasma Blaster, 2 x HK Missiles, Bolter w. Siege wrecker, Extra Armour

TOTAL 1,500pts

One thing I will be sticking with is the idea of two LTS one focused on close combat so Chainswords and Pistols, one that is more standoff-ish.  With that in mind Ill be searching for some CSM bits particularly Chainswords and Bolt-Pistols to modify my next purchase of Forgeworld MkIII.   Next purchases post Christmas from Forgeworld are going to be these guys
MkIV armoured command squad to go with the 5 MkIV I already have.


2 sets of these guys MkIII Legion Iron armoured Marines
 Big issue I am facing now is what figures to I get to create my Praetor and a Dark Apostle/Chaplain suitable for the HH era?  Do I go with GW Space Marine or CSM figures or the Forgeworld Champion as a Praetor???

December 12, 2012

First 30k list - Word Bearers 1500pts HELP?!?

Working on my 1500pt Word Bearer list with the intent of fielding an army at Pete Dunns Horus Heresy campaign weekend in November 2013.  Getting the list right now also means I can plan out a purchase and painting strategy for next year in terms of the models/units I need.

However having never played 40k let alone its specialised 30k variant I have absolutely NO IDEA what a competitive list looks like, even the weapons still confuse me - despite lots of time perusing the rulebook - but I've put together something that (a) I like the look of and (b) seems to follow the relevant Word Bearers fluff i.e no demons or cultists.

But any suggestions/help would be greatly appreciated....

Word Bearers 1500pts - Horus Heresy 30k army list
Sourcebook - Forgeworld Horus Heresy Vol 1

Legion Praetor - 122pts
w. Lightning Claw, Bolt Pistol, Bolter

Centurion/Chaplain - 97pts
w. Terminator Armour, Croxis Arcanum, Volkite Charger, Lightning Claw

Command Squad - 175pts
w. 4 Chosen & 1 Standard Bearer + Rhino

Legion Tactical Squad - 220pts
w. 9 Marines w.Chainswords, Nunciovox, Vexilla, Sergeant w. Powerfist, Rhino

Legion Tactical Squad - 220pts
w. 9 Marines, Nunciovox, Vexilla, Sergeant w. Powerfirst, Rhino

Terminator Squad - 205pts
w. 5 Terminators, 1 x Heavy Flamer, 1 x Autocannon, Lightning Claw

Apothecarion detachment - 110pts
w. 2 x Apothecaries, 2 x Augury Scanners, 2 x Volkite Chargers

Contemptor Dreadnoughts x 2 - 350pts

TOTAL 1,499pts

December 11, 2012

2013 year of the Word Bearer 40k Ogre?!?

2013 is shaping up to be an interesting and action packed year for wargaming for me with a lot of tournaments throughout the year and an interesting new project in the shape of my 40k Word Bearers.

I managed to source the small soft cover 40k 6th ed rulebook a few weeks back and have been pouring over the rules.  Its definately a big change from WHFB but not that difficult to pick up as the rule set has some strong parallels with FOW and Warmachine e.g. unit movement, gone to ground and cover rules, individual character attributes, assault what you shoot at rules, and skirmish based melee.  Overall, I'm looking forward to giving it a go but until I get a copy of the 6th Ed Chaos Space Marine codex I am at a loss to figure out what, other than Tactical Marines, I need to source for my Word Bearers.

Anyway whats the plan for 2013....

Tournaments in 2013
so far its for a lot of tournaments 9 in fact including (assuming I earn enough brownie points to get spousal approval first) the 3 day National Convention in March.  All up I'm planning on attending the following.

NATCON - WHFB 2400pts (Ogres)

Runefang VI - WHFB 2400pts (Ogres)

Horned Rat VI - WHFB 2400pts (Ogres)

Panzershrek - FOW LW Doubles 2200pts (Fallschirmjager or US Paras)

Call to Arms - FOW LW 1750pts (Fallschirmjager)

Skitterleap - WHFB 2400pts (Ogres/Dwarfs)

Vermintide - WHFB 1200pts (Ogres)
Horus Heresy - WH30k 1500pts (Word Bearers)

As you can see my Dwarfs and High Elves are getting left on the shelf and Ill be concentrating on my Ogres for 2013, although I'll look at taking my Dwarfs to Skitterleap as I know Pete would love to see them.  High Elves might also get a look in at least once as there are rumours of a new book but who knows.  US Paras are my new FOW army for 2013 based around the new starter kit although I am to finish off my MW-DAK Panzer Company as well.  Also hoping that Bob organises another 1 day FOW event in Shannon to complement FRACAS something he hinted at this year.

Army Collections for 2013
The big project of course will be finishing 1500pts worth of Word Bearers in time for Petes campaign event in November, with the eventual aim of taking it to at least one 40k tournament the following year.  But other goals for 2013 are...

WHFB - Ogres
If I'm going to take these guys to NATCON I have to get some serious painting done - that includes finishing off 12 Bulls, buying another Butcher, getting a Firebelly and a Thundertusk (because I want one).  Also looking at 2 more Mournfang so I can run 2 units of 3 at 2400pts but we'll wait and see.  Final act will be to pick up a large picture frame which I can convert into a cheap but nice looking army display board.

WHFB - Dwarfs
Nothing much to do here except finish my Anvil of Doom and a unit of 20 Quarrellers.  But these are a very low priority.  My Dwarf collection and my 2400pt tournament list are pretty much set in stone (HA HA) and I am not planning on adding anything to my list anytime in the near future - unless a new book emerges with some major changes in it.

WHFB - High Elves
Have a huge backlog of painting here - 10 x Dragon Princes, 10 x Reavers, 28 x Spears, 5 x Phoenix Guard, 2 x Chariots.  Except for the Reavers and Spears these guys are, like my Dwarfs, not really a priority.

FOW - Fallschirmjager
Are all done and dusted and only need a couple of minor touch ups prior to tournament time to fix the odd paint chip.

FOW - LW Panzer Company
Have gone off these guys unfortunately - still have a large collection of PSC PzIV's but dont see my playing them anytime soon so its on the shelf gathering dust.  Will prob look at selling them later in the year.

FOW - MW DAK Panzer Company
Now this is a project worth completing but honestly they will be competing with everything else and my Fallschirmjager are stocked enough to give me a decent tournament army.  Still need another infantry Platoon, to finish painting the Nebs and want to grab a couple of 88s but then they're all done.

FOW - US Paras/Irish Guards
Ah the joys of plastic miniatures just like the Airfix/Matchbox stuff I played with as a kid 25+ years ago.  I'll do these guys slowly as a fun project.

40k/30k - Word Bearers
Aiming to get two tactical squads 20 guys in MkIII armour, and a command squad/veteran tactical squad in MkIV completed by March/April.  Also need to source a couple of decent figures to act as my Legion Praetor and Chaplain.  After that is Rhinos, Dreadnoughts and a unit of Cata Terminator armoured Marines but cost wise these are going to have to wait till end of the year (will most likely have to borrow models for Novembers event). 

All in all its going to be a busy year gaming wise... not sure how busy it will be at the club but heres hoping we pick up a few more WHFB members next year.

December 7, 2012

Horus Heresy: The First Heretic & building a Word Bearer List

Finished another book in the Horus Heresy series last night - The First Heretic which detailed the fall of the Word Bearers legion, quite relevant to my little 30k project. 

Was really looking forward to this after books 5-7 proved to be a bit BLAH.  It started off well, good writing nice story line focusing on the Emperor admonishing the entire Legion and Lorgar (under Ultramarine escort) for their failure to pursue the Crusade fast enough and the sin of faith.  Also enjoyed the discussion around Lorgars thinking about the Emperor and the Pilgramage he and elements of the Word Bearers took to find a new faith - finding instead the Great Eye or Warp Storm and a link to Chaos. 

Problem is at that point just as the story got interesting, just as the first Word Bearer Astartes were becoming corrupted by the Warp and possessed by the Daemons that lived there it fell flat.  While I couldnt put the book down for the first 3/4 of it I ended up flicking through the final 50 pages or so skim reading until the very end.  Still a good read but not as good as I had hoped or as the earlier books - Horus Rising and Galaxy in Flames for example I've reached several times each now still enjoying them each time.

Did get some good ideas/hints about the Word Bearers though and army construction for the Horus Heresy:
  • The principle armour used by the legion appears to be MkIII.
  • Power/Chain Swords and close combat are a key part of the Legions tactics.
  • Each company operates with a dedicated cohort of Mechanicum warmachines, these stay with that company permanently, reside on the same warship and are often inducted into the Legion/Company.  This gives me some solid ideas about what sort of machines to get.
  • Daemon possessed Marines were part of the Legion before the dropzone massacre on Istavaan V (or V or was it III)
  • Chaplains seemed to wear Black Armour rather than the standard Crimson/Red.
More painting for me to do and some more MkIII from Forgeworld after Christmas

December 6, 2012

Blogger Liebster Award!!!

Apparently this little peer determinated award has been floating around the Blogosphere for some time now but until recently I honestly hadn't heard of it - but after some searching it appears to be extremely prevalent.

Even more surprising was to get a nomination from the Kapiti FOW Gamers who had some really nice things to say me about - Thanks Guys its really nice to know that people enjoy reading and looking at what I post here!!! Anyway the rules of the Liebster award are fairly simple:
  1. Copy and paste the award on to your blog linking it to the blogger who has given it to you.
  2. Pass the award on to your top 5 favourite blogs with less than 200 followers by leaving a comment on one of their posts to notify them that they have won the award and listing them on your own blog.
  3. Sit back and bask in the warm fuzzy feeling that comes with knowing you have made someone’s day!
  4. There is no obligation to pass this onto someone else, but it’s nice if you take the time to do so.
 So who am I nominating?  Over the last 4 years of blogging I've linked to a lot of sites and followed many more 40-50+ probably.  Some are inactive, others semi-active and a few extremely active in terms of their posting but I enjoy them all.  There are however a handful that I make a point of visiting nearly everyday just to see whats up, or whose less regular posts I look forward to reading.  So the Stumpyheaven nominees for the Liebster (in no particular order) are:

The Fields of Blood
If you are a New Zealand wargamer and you play WHFB (and 40k) then you know who Pete Dunn is.  Fields of Blood is his blog and its a great one too.  While he doesnt go in for posting pictures of his armies (which are all fantastic and awarding win quality btw) he does provide a lot of insightful comment about wargaming in general, tournaments, WHFB rules, 40k, new gaming products and updates on new releases. While he is devote in his dislike of Dwarfs (although me thinks he doth protest too much) the Fields of Blood is always the first blog I check out every morning. It is also an unofficial hangout for NZ WHFB players and a great place to read/debate key gaming issues.

The Bloody Beast
The blog of Rafal Maj a professional painter from Poland and it shows.  His talent with a brush is simply outstanding and everything, and I do mean everything, he posts is World Class covering WHFB, 40k, Mordhiem, Kings of War, Blood Bowl, LoTR and many others.  Not only that but he posts regularly and I am constantly amazed at how quickly he churns out top quality work like the example below.  Site is in English as well.

AVs Corner
This is Dutch blog which is almost exclusively focused on FOW.  Its updated regularly with AAR, the authors painting efforts - which are really good - and thoughts on list building and various army intelligence briefings.  The blog also has a strong historical element to it as well with regular posts linking the game of FOW to events in WW2 and discussion of other events of interest - notably Dutch WW2 history.  It also provides a large number of Excel files for building FOW armies.

The Magnificent Bastards
A collaborative gaming blog run by a collection semi-professional (or professional not sure) painters and WHFB gamers, although other gaming systems turn up occassionally.  I have to be honest and I say that my interest in this blog is extremely biased due to the absolutely stunning Dwarven army created by one of its authors - Clan Blazenbeard - one of the best I have ever seen.  Blog has a host of tutorials not just on painting but sculpting etc as well.

Finally and by no means least is

Crac des Chevaliers
How this blog doesnt have more followers is a mystery to me as his FOW painting is some of the cleanest and most alive looking you will ever see.  Doesn't post that regularly - seems to come in fits and starts - but every post is well worth the wait.  Blog contains numerous FOW AAR as well as tutorials, army lists, historical posts and regular painting updates.

I could name several more but the limits 5 but check out my reading list down the right hand side of my blog and you'll find a ton of good reading...

December 5, 2012

Word Bearers 30k Tactical Squad completed

Managed to sneak in more painting time last night and get the entire squad of 5 MkIII equipped Word Bearers finished up.  3 are armed with Forgeworld Phobos pattern bolters and 2 with Bolters from the GW Chaos Space Marines set and bolt pistols in holsters.

Roman numerals on the shoulder pads are hand painted (still need some touch ups under the magnifying glass but they look ok from a distance). They still need some touch ups here and there - mostly as taking photos of them tends to show up a lot of the imperfections - but overall Im pretty happy with my first attempt at 40k painting.

Next pictures are the Forgeworld MkIV Legion armoured Marines.  The 5 figures include 2 with the Forgeworld MkIV commmand upgrade - two different heads and a radio/vox backpack thing (assume thats correct).  I've also given them GW Bolt Pistols in holsters, 2 of them standard GW Bolters and modified the Sergeant to carry a standard GW Chain Sword.