Saturday 19 August 2017

Nurgley Goodness

I bought the new Dark Imperium 40K boxed set a while ago and it has very much reignited my passion for the game - the rules are less bloated, the new marines are rather spiffy and my favourite Chaos God gets some lovely new miniatures. Nurgle, the god of decay, is a brilliant idea for the starter set. You can't really go wrong painting something that is supposed to be decaying and filthy. However there are ways to make the rotting hordes stand out on the tabletop and I found the advice given on Warhammer TV invaluable in getting these to the table quickly while avoiding them turning into a drab horde. This is basically painting using layers of Citadel Shade on a white undercoat, building up subtle colour blends and bringing out the detail in a few passes. I rather like the result and they were so satisfying to paint in this manner.

These are the Poxwalkers from the First Strike set which are the same as the new "easy build" set. Since there are two sets of ten unique poxwalkers in Dark Imperium, I may add these and an additional box of easy-build Poxwalkers to make two identical units of sixteen with no duplicates within each unit.

Might have to do some Primaris Smurfs next.

Sunday 30 July 2017

Back to my Roots

Well, last months foray into 6mm Sci-Fi whetted my apetite for all things futuristic and I probably would have even more stuff to show you had I not happened to walk past my local GW store on the day that Warhammer 40K 8th edition was released. Now I have to say that personally I love 40k, it is the game I have played more over the years than any other. I started playing when it was just a handwritten sheet of annotations to Warhammer Fantasy Battle 2nd Ed. and I only stopped when 3rd Ed started to become a bit of a chore ruleswise. I have bought boxed sets and odd bits and bobs since then but the rules were always so dense, not my cup of tea at all.

The 8th edition is a completely different kettle of fish though. The rules have been pruned with the delicate touch of a chainsaw and now fit onto about eight smallish pages or a small booklet if you include some of the other bits and bobs on how to set up a game. I will say more on the actual game in future posts because the main thing is that I have been painting stuff from the old starter set, Dark Vengeance and looking at the new Primaris Marines from the new starter set Dark Imperium.

First up are a Dark Angels tactical squad, or two squads of five depending on how you split them up. I have painted them as the first squad of the third company.

(Apologies for the poor photographs, I think my camera is on its last legs.)

Sergeant, three marines with boltguns and one with a plasma gun.

Four marines with boltguns and one with a plasma cannon.

These have taken up most of my time, not least because after putting about half of them together I realised that marines are now on 32mm bases, not the 25mm ones they used to have. I know I could have kept them on the old bases and they would have remained perfectly acceptable but I like everything to be just right so I re-based them all. Thank goodness I had only undercoated them at that stage!

Next is a Deathwing Terminator, also from Dark Vengeance.

I love the look of terminators but painting all that bone white to look halfway decent is a real pain in the fundament. I think my army might concentrate on Primaris marines and Ravenwing.

I also found an old box of Cadians under my miniatures pile and this is the test paint.

I'm not sure where Cadia rests fluff-wise but I might make Astra Militarum my back-burner army. Something to pick at when I tire of Dark Angels and Death Guard.

Finally something from the new box, a Primaris Inceptor.

I took one look at the flying stands in the box and thought "not a chance" so I made my usual flying stand with a stainless steel rod. I drilled into the foot of the marine and used a tatty old drill bit to slowly grind through a soft limestone chipping. This was firmly seated to a plastic base using a big lump of Miliput which was then sanded and painted as usual. Much sturdier than the plastic ones and I feel it to be less visually intrusive. The rock and Miliput help to weight the base and make it less prone to toppling as well. Although he is painted as a Dark Angel I have left off the company and squad markings as I have no idea how he fits into the Chapter structure until we get a new codex or some inkling from GW. Fortunately kneepads are easy to paint up with the necessary markings as and when I decide what to do.

Anyway that is enough for this month, I have started on Plague Marines and Pox Walkers so next month's post will have a distinctly Nurgley feel to it.

Sunday 11 June 2017

6mm Sci Fi on the Horizon (Wars)

Well, its been a while since I last managed to get anything more than half started but my enthusiasm has been re-ignited by a bored, late night Amazonian suggestion. Before the mind boggles too hard I shall reveal that Amazon suggested that I might like a copy of Horizon Wars by Robey Jenkins and being the dutiful consumer that I am, I dared not disobey the mighty bringer of shiny stuff. When it arrived I took a quick shufty at the guts of the game and decided to give it a go, especially as I had some 6mm sci-fi miniatures that had originally been bought for a Future War Commander project that had never got off the starting blocks.

That was about twelve days ago, I now have the basis of a pretty useful army painted and a few options still waiting to be cleaned up and primed.

The first units are two Battletech Mechs from Ral Partha Europe, a Madcat and an Urbanmech. The Urby is going to be my CHQ, basically a command centre build in the head of a large stompy robot - hence the all round windows. I will have two Madcats but I only found the other one this morning so it is still being assembled at the moment.

Next up is the infantry. I have based one lot as Light Infantry and another as Mobile Infantry with their APC. The Light Infantry has optional air transport provided by the VTOL. The infantry is by Ground Zero Games, from their NAC range, beautiful little figures that paint up so easily. The VTOL is also by GZG and the APC is from Brigade Models' British range.

Two units of Heavy Artillery next, also Brigade British. I have a third somewhere but it is eluding me at the moment. Brigade have some interesting and plausible designs in their ranges but my favourites have to be the British and the Neo-Soviets, hover tanks versus tracked behemoths with a slight steampunk vibe.

And finally also from Brigade's British range, three elements of hover equipped MBTs which count as Heavy Cavalry in Horizon Wars.

And here it is all together. This is about a 25P army, about average size, depending on how you want to class the mechs and the VTOL. I have a couple more units to add, some more infantry and the remaining Madcat along with another Heavy Artillery unit and some air support but that is a playable force right there, painted in just under a fortnight. Now all I need to do is to paint up some opponents and come up with some fluff for a world to fight over.

Sunday 27 November 2016

Moar Orkz

The Oldhammer bug has continued to buzz inside my skull for the past week or two and I have some more orcs fresh from the painting table. This now gives me half a usable unit and is more than I have painted in a long time. While painting I have been pondering what I want to do with this project and I realised that I don't want to spend ages on eBay tracking down old Citadel Miniatures. They were great miniatures and I still like the look of them but I simply don't have the time to spend hours looking through vastly exaggerated listings to find the miniatures I want when perfectly good miniatures are still in production. So I am going to try to build decent 2nd Ed. Warhammer armies using miniatures that either captures the style of old Citadel or that we used to use before "thou shalt only use GW stuff" became the first commandment of Warhammer.

There are also places where the background changed significantly between 1st/2nd Ed. and subsequent ranges of miniatures. For instance, chaos thugs and marauders which, in the 2nd Ed. fluff were norse and eastern barbarians who had fallen under the spell of Chaos. They later turned into a Mad Max roadpunk thing before settling on a conan themed fetish look. Sticking with the original idea I am looking at ranges that have a norse or eastern look to them although I may keep the styles of the original four Chaos gods or simply go my own way as we had to before the Realm of Chaos books were published.

Anyway while I am still trying to work all of this out for myself, here are a couple of shots of the orcs so far:

the lineup

and in ranks.

Test paints for chaos next if the gods allow.

Wednesday 16 November 2016

(Very) Oldhammer

Well it has been a while since I last put finger to keyboard here and to be frank, I have done very little painting or gaming in that time. However, a search in the loft for a renegade squirrel led me to my old box set of Warhammer Fantasy Battle 2nd Ed. and the army lists Ravening Hordes. This was the first wargame I played more than a couple of times, in fact I was obsessed with it as a spotty fourteen year old and had hordes of orcs, elves and chaos warriors back when GW stuff was sold at pocket money prices.

I had been toying with a return to Warhammer when I discovered the whole subculture of Oldhammer, a group dedicated to keeping the best editions of Warhammer and 40K alive despite GWs best efforts. Oldhammer as a whole seems to be fairly heavily biased towards 3rd edition which I never bought into, although there are quite a few people into 2nd edition as well these days (seems to be no love for 1st ed. though). So I bit the bullet and bought a few orcs from Black Tree Designs, lovely 80s/90s style sculpts with a character that modern GW just doesn't have.

So here is my test paint, based in true 80s style green drybrushed sand.

So much fun to paint and a real nostalgia kick, I put some thrash metal on and nearly grew a mullet there and then.

So that is my project for now, to paint the remaining eleven orcs that I currently have and then maybe buying some goblins or a chariot or something.

Of course, they will be perfect for Dragon Rampant while I am building up 1000+ points for Warhammer!

Sunday 27 September 2015

Never mind the medievals, here's a Pz.Kpfw.38(T)!

As usual, instead of getting on with my Lion Rampant retinue I am thinking about starting yet another gaming period. I have been surrounded by boxes of Zvezda kits for the past couple of weeks and I eventually cracked and picked up a couple just for "scale reference purposes" (cheers David!). They look so much like the Revell kits of my youth and I am not made of stone. The first one built and painted is the Pz.Kpfw.38(T) (1:100 scale or usable with 15mm figures) which I have left fairly generic so it can be deployed in France 1940 or in the Soviet Union in the following year or two.

Zvezda 6130 Pz.Kpfw.38(T)
Scale wise, they seem pretty good, I don't have any other 38s around to check against but the other kit I picked up was a Sdkfz.251/1 Ausf.B which is so close to the Plastic Soldier Company Ausf.C model that I would be happy to mix and match in the same unit. The PSC is maybe 1-1.5mm longer (difficult to say due to the difference in the shape of the nose) but the width, height and heft are identical.

Back to the Pz.38T. There are a few problems with the kit - the prominent trench in the front glacis that needs filling and the joint across the rear that is difficult to get rid of (I didn't bother, its a wargame tank, not a display model) but the kit goes together in a few minutes and looks a whole lot better than any resin or whitemetal kit I have.

For painting I removed the tracks and painted them separately, same for the turret. I gave everything a spray of Halfords Grey Primer, followed by a basecoat of Vallejo 70836 London Grey. This was washed with a very thinned Vallejo 70950 Black and then drybrushed up with London Grey again and a final light brush of Vallejo Game Color Extraopaque 72144 Heavy Bluegrey. The wheels got the same treatment while the tracks were basecoated in Vallejo 70872 Chocolate Brown, washed with Citadel Shade Nuln Oil and then lightly drybrushed wth Citadel Colour Chainmail. Balkenkreuz and turret numbers were painted in Vallejo Black, 70951 White and the numbers filled in with Citadel Base Mephiston Red (what would I do without it). I then put it all together again and used a drybrush of Vallejo 70875 Beige Brown to muddy up the tracks and the rear deck (the bit that gets stood on a lot).

I am very happy with the finished article and should be putting together at least a couple more for my 15mm Bolt Action force, alongside some Pz.Is and Pz.IIs from the same range.

Right that's enough of that, back to medievals...

Tuesday 22 September 2015


I have been needing something to kickstart my painting mojo and David Ryan at Caliver Books needed some of his wonderful Matchlock Miniatures Ottomans painted so here they are. These are NOTT53, 54 and 55 - officer, standard bearer and soup carriers which I have painted as Omar Sharif, ginger hipster and The Chuckle Brothers (to me! to you!).

These are beautiful sculpts (Mark Sims I believe) and they paint up well. I love the soup carriers, makes a change from pack mules and camels for the non-combatants.