April Stuff

Happy May Day MoDers, Hope that April treated you well. I have not dome much in gaming terms this month, but still managed to get some hobby time.

W40Kepic

I believe I mentioned in my last post, I have started getting into the classic ‘Games Workshop’ games Warhammer 40K Epic. Although not currently supported it is not too hard to get hold of the rules and some miniatures to play this. I was one of many ‘Squat’ fans that was disappointed when GW stopped that range and claimed that the home-worlds had been devastated by the ‘Tyrannid’ Hive Fleet ‘Behemoth’. So I decided that as there are rules for this race in Epic they were going to be my army of choice. I have been able to collect a small force together, and have completed some painting one some war-machines, as I’m dreading painting the tiny troops that accompany them.

Games with my girl.

After recently getting my little girl Bethany into Xbox, I decided to try her with a table top game. I knew whatever I tried had to be easy to learn and interesting, and decided that ‘Wings of War’, with is rather basic rules and dye cast model Bi-planes I couldn’t go far wrong. I have the ‘Flying Aces’ WWI set for this game, it has been stowed away for a while since my friend Nik Green moved to Austria, we played the game now and then, but it has been on the shelf collecting dust for a while. I grabbed this and my carry case which contains a collection of allied fighter planes. When I opened the case and showed Bethany the content she was eager to give the game a try. The good thing about ‘Wings of War’ is that you do not need a vast amount of space for a simple dog fight, which was as complex as I was willing to go with Bethany. She looked at the planes in my case and selected a ‘Sopwith Snipe’ with Belgian markings; I went for my first purchase a ‘Spad S VII’ with Italian markings. The main difference besides appearance being that the ‘Snipe’ is capable of sharper turns, and the ‘Spad’ had a higher armour class. It did not take Bethany long to get to grips with the whole manoeuvre selection and turn sequence, and we were soon able to get the planes within firing distance. With her sharp turns Bethany manged to get a few volley’s off at me, lucky I kept drawing 0’s for damage. We eventually got each other down to half each other’s starting wound rate. I think by this point she had become a little bored and she slowly slinked off her chair, ‘Snipe’ in hand, grabbed another plane out of the case and started running around the Living room making aeroplane noises. This signalled the end of the game, which I decided to take as partial success. However I will give it a few months before I try for a new round.

Warploque new minis

A while back I supported a kickstarter ‘Trouble in the North’ by Brindie games company ‘Warploque Miniatures’ headed by the very talented Alex Huntley. I really enjoy painting the figures that he produces, and the ones for the Troubles campaign looked really stunning. Of course I went with the Halfling faction, and still await the arrival of these rewards. In the meantime Alex has produced a mini game for his ‘Arcworlde’ setting. This is a few years in the future and there is strife and civil war in ‘Hobbleshire’ there are two factions in this games first shown at SALUTE 2017, although I could not get there, I have been watching the Kickstarter updates, and when I saw the two war bands that feature ion this game, I had to have them, of course I could not afford both sets yet, so I went for the really characterful  ‘Son of Hobbleshire’ lovely clean sculpts. If I had any issues with the new models it be that I don’t think the feet are quite big or Halfling(y) enough, and look a bit like animal claws, but is such a small fault in an otherwise fantastic range. Check out these models as well as Alex’s other collections at: http://www.warploqueminiatures.com/

I need a fully painted battle standard bearer in my ‘Rhordian army’, so decided to paint this guy up first.

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Wolf conversions and Campaign days

Happy 2017 MoD’ers, here is my first post for the year. I do hope that the festive season treated you well and your eager to make this as good a year as you can, I know I aim to.

Since my last Blog I started on a new figure project. I finally had assembled enough pieces for my Rhordian Duke mounted upon a Winged Aralez Ancient (Huge flying dog), for my ‘Kings of War’ League of Rhordia army. I had most of the bits and bobs within the lead and plastic collection that I have dotted around the house. However for the main body I wanted something large and impressive, I scoured the web for suitable miniatures, and the answer was presented by eBay in the form of an alternative model for the ‘Space Wolves Thunder Wolf’ produce in resin by a European company listed below. One of my 1990 sculpted GW Griffons parted with her wings, and I sent off to ‘The Assault Group’ for one of their splendid mounted Dwarves.

The back story for this character is based upon the fluff provided for the League of Rhordia within Mantic’s: ‘Uncharted Empires’. Rhordia is a melting pot of races formed through adversity in the form of Orc raids that almost broke the Republic before it got going. The population of Rhordia is made up largely of Men, Halflings and Dwarves. Whereas the first two are given specific stat lines, the Rhordian Dwarves are not catered for. I use Dwarf figures when I want to represent their presence within the army, and use the stats that have been provided for the specific Rhordian units they are representing. I do this more for the character of the army, than any specific bonus of including dwarf troops.

This character came to power when his family used their Dwarven skills for smoking and preserving meats, made their adopted town of ‘Chipolata’ a thriving city known for mainly for the sausages and delicate meats they produce. Money brought them power and that bought then position. I wanted to choose food related names for my character, and came up with Duke Brok Wurst, in honour of his family’s business. I decided on Black and Yellow as the clan colours and gave him Bronze armour to show his status. As he is mounted I decided to go with the lance and shield option he came with, but added a spare Warhammer to the saddle, as a typical dwarf side arm.

Giant Wolf – http://bitspudlo.com/products/storm-hounds-2

Wings – Games Workshop (Citadel) Old style Griffon

Dwarf – http://www.theassaultgroup-shop.co.uk/index.php?p=7&tags_match=Fantasy

Hammer – http://www.thebattleforge.co.uk/

Although I hve a number of things to do to complete the model, the KoW International Campaign ran this weekend (14th Jan) and I really wanted to get him involved as the legendary hero you were allowed to put together. So I included him in a 2000 + 200 pts army list that was an even balance, and took it to my local gaming club: H.A.T.E @ Bethnal Green Workingmen’s Club, who were running a special Saturday opening for the campaign day. He I face a new opponent, a rather skilled, but very friendly ‘Empire of Dust’ pplayer. The sides appeared evenly matched, but I had not experienced the pain of an army with the ‘Surge’ spell, they were on me in second and tore my Rhordians apart. Despite this I had a really fun game and would certainly like to face him again.

However, one thing I have noticed in many of my games is the ‘tactic’ or should I say reticence of war-gamers allowing their figures to get involved in the melee, unless they can be the ones to charge. They appear to literally be scared of holding units in place to take the initial impact, opting to actively avoid combat unless they get the bonuses a charge provides. Whereas this may seem sensible to many, it can lead to a boring scenario of either allowing yourself to constantly be the one who is charged, or both players hang back and have a rather dull game. Maybe games designers could do something about this, perhaps design skills and/or magic items that can be used to force the players into moving at your units and risk receiving the charge; I believe the ‘Warhammer Fantasy’ Dwarf army list had a taunting rune that did such a thing. It would certainly avoid the situation where two competitive players don’t really get a game, as both are too stubborn to move.

Well that is all for now MoD’ers, hope January goes well for you, and hope to be more regular in posting this year, 2016 was a complete mare.

As things end, so they begin…

I have finally completed Oscar’s Chaos Champion, and just in time as he visits next week and want to pit his followers of the Dark gods against my humble sons of Grungi. So without further ado, here are the final blurry shots:

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To wet this particular baby’s head, I went for an American Brew Samuel Adams ‘Boston Larger’ it had a good bitter taste but an oddly eggy finish:

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And so to new things, although I have a huge back log of figures to paint, I just had to paint up my new sculpt GW Iron Breakers, my favourite troop by far, so here’s my new project:

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Warhammer Dwarfs 2014

Well it has taken me a while to put finger to keyboard in relation to this topic; and the new Warhammer Dwarf army book has been out for about 4 months now, many people will have bought the new figures and played a number of new list options. Be it a late review or not, I’ve been a Dwarf player since the late 1980’s and I’m going to post my thoughts about the new release.

On the face of it I like the new book, its hard back, contains a balanced mix of background (Fluff), rules, troop rules and costs, and the art work you might expect from a Games Workshop product. It is well produced and a pleasure to flick through.

However after my first scan through I was left feeling disappointed. I felt that a good opportunity had been missed. This book saw the introduction of two new units, (although the gyro-bomber is just the re-introduction of the gyro-copter bombing run from earlier an edition of the Dwarf army book). The dwarf player still lacks something to take the fight to the opponent, yes they now get bonuses on the charge, and have a host of weapon runes at the disposal of their hero characters, but when does a dwarf army actually get to charge on a consistent basis?

We have an army list that is totally devoid of any monstrous units, cavalry or chariots. The background states that the Dwarf Kingdoms are established within the mountain regions of the Warhammer world. However in all that time they have not found some mythical creature or beasts of burden to tame and put to some use. They are supposed to be the most creative race in the Warhammer world and yet the best war machine they can come up with is a light weight helicopter with a bomb? I don’t just play I collect, paint and model, I want a grand centre piece! Some kind of dwarf made dreadnaught or steam powered chariot. If Scibor can manage Dwarfs on bear back and West Wind Dwarven boar cavalry, then surely Games Workshop could come up with something better; that still fits within the rules and background of the sons of Grungi!

The sculpting of new models was pretty poor as well. I find that the elven models always look great as do the empire sculpts, in fact as each race has been given a re-boot I’ve been left salivating and wandering if I can afford to take up another collection. The two dimensional feel to the new dwarf figure such as that atrocious sculpt ‘Belegar Ironhammer’ left me feeling like no time had been put into planning the new dwarf army, although they had nine years to come up with ideas.

Putting the anvil of doom back in the magic phase has rendered it useless. The best rune, ‘Oath and honour’ has gone and the effects of the rune ‘Wrath and ruin’ have been reduced, which means that if you do get a successful strike past the enemy wizard, the effects will be minimal and possible not worth the cost of choosing the item. The Organ gun, a weapon that was more about luck than accuracy has also be worked over, now you have to roll the artillery dice, and any shot released still have to be rolled to hit and with the Dwarven BS of 3, its no likely, you better off picking a unit of 10 Thunderers where you will at least get 10 shots every round. As far as my collection is concerned its back to the shelf for these models.

 

I understand that changes have to be made, some of the old army rules did not fit well with the 8th edition Warhammer rules, some had been rendered obsolete and others had become over powered, so changes were needed. But I feel that opportunities were missed.

 

Having moaned and bitched about the changes that I dislike, what do I like. Well there has been a reduction in the cost of core troops such as Thunderers and warriors. Some new rules seem quite interesting, such as the new version of ‘Ancestral grudge’ and ‘Forgefire’. Also there appears to be no more -1 to hamper the roll to charge/flee. As I said I like the book itself, and despite what I said about the sculpting I do like the new Iron drakes and the new version Long beards, I also like the new gyro-copter sculpts despite the fact that assembled they are no bigger than a paint pot. The dragon slayer was rather cool as well despite displaying a rather elf level of agility.

 

I have done a brief comparison of the different Dwarf army books I have owned since 1993:

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1993:

  • 112 pages
  • 8 special characters including the double team ‘Gotrek and Felix’
  • 50 runes to choose from & 8 pre-generated magic items
  • A wealth of fluff and background (probably unequalled by the later editions)
  • 11 pages of painted examples
  • 15 page catalogue of now classic sculpts

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2000:

  • 80 pages
  • 2 special characters
  • 55 runes to choose from 0 pre-generated magic items
  • A good amount of fluff
  • 18 pages of painted examples
  • No catalogue
  • No new units or war machines

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2005:

  • 80 pages
  • 3 special characters
  • 63 runes to choose from 0 pre-generated magic items
  • Fluff and background okay largely based on troop type
  • 18 pages of painted examples
  • No catalogue
  • No new units or war machines

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2014:

  • 96 pages
  • 6 special characters
  • 52 runes to choose from & 6 pre-generated magic items (Some runes can now be multiplied for differing effects
  • A good amount of fluff and background almost equal to the first book
  • No catalogue
  • 1 new unit and 1 variation to an existing unit (sorry but I just don’t see the Gyro-bomber as new)

In contrast the book comes out really well, and just maybe it is better in some regard, if it wasn’t for those missed opportunities.

Been busy, so been quiet.

I have not written for a while, real life as ever had become quite busy, and so I have not been able to write anything, not that this is a weekly blog in any case.

I want to talk about two kickstarter projects that I have my eye on, and think are well worth the support if you have the money to invest, not that it costs a lot to back.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/388 … d?ref=live

The above link is for ‘Lords of War – Templars Vs Undead’

Lords of war if a really very fun trading card strategy game. I played the ‘Dwarves Vs Orcs’ game at Salute this year, it was a fun 1/2 hour, and is a good collector game for those who don’t want to paint before they can play.

The cards are nicely details with some good art work and the company has kept the price very reasonable.

As well as the Dwarf set there is a second set which features Elves Vs Lizardmen.

If you have any spare cash going and want to help these guys get game no:3 of the ideas pad and into the shops, then check out their kickstarter link and watch the video:

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http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/433 … a?ref=live

The second kickstarter is for a new range of models by veteran sculptor Bob Olley, who is hoping to release a new range of steam punk style figures, his first outing is a set of Victorian Dwarves.

For those who do not know Bob Olley is a talented sculptor who has worked for the likes of Games Workshop, Reaper Miniatures, and Ral Partha, now he’s free lance and his work is well worth backing if you have a penny or two to help him raise his bid.

You can see more of his work at: http://www.olleysarmies.co.uk/home.html

I really like his sculpting, and if you are/were a fan of Games Workshop 40K Squats check out if Space Scrunts.

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Golfort Kraus

This post is about the last set of Warhammer table top games I played, it was a mini campaign run in a couple of days, and took place in March and April, I have not had the time to play since that, and my good friend and regular playing partner has moved away from the UK, so I’m not sure when I shall get to roll the dice again.

The game

I called the game Golfort Kraus, it is about a feuding town on the outskirts of the Empire, as set in the Games Workshop ‘Warhammer World.’ The town is located within a marshy area with a valuable seem of river gold over which the North and South side of the town have been fighting for decades.

The town is in stale mate with neither side gaining the upper hand for any significant period of time. The best leaders are now either very old or dead, and both sides are intent on settling the matter. They have sent out for assistance, and this has come in the form of a passing hero and his retinue.

Players were tasked to find a special hero level character they would like to play with (who came fully equipped for free) and allowed 250 points to spend on a any core or special infantry unit to act as the hero’s unit. They were also given 500 points to spend on core empire troop to represent the towns folk (no heroes or special equipment for these peasants).

Due to the low point forces there was a lot of terrain which included a river, marsh land, woods, hills, a town and a bridge.

Objective

There were two pathways to victory, either annihilate the other side or have the move units with 5 or more models within 10 inches of the town centre, after D3 +2 turns (giving at least 3 rounds per game, allowing for more games to take place):

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(Above the initial set up of the board)

The players selected the following heroes and units:

Josef Bugman + 14 fully equipped Longbeard Dwarven rangers

Khorhil of the white lions + 14 White Lions of Chrace

Lumpin Croop + 29 Halfling archers (inluding Neddy Hamfist the banner bearer) Due to his lack of special weapons or rules, Croop was allowed a sword or might and potion of fool hardiness.

Gor-Rok + 19 Saurus warriors

Each player was to face one another once, and the results were entered onto a table.

As phys reps each player used their own figures to represent the empire troops, here’s some pics of the game:

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Results

XX JB Kh LC GR

JB XX V   V   D

Kh L   XX V   V

LC L   L   XX V

GR D   V   L   XX

Key: JB – Josef Bugman          Kh – Khorhil

    LC – Lumpin Croop          GR – Gor-Rok

XX – No game          V – Victory

D – draw           L – Lose

So it was victory to my Josef Bugman thanks to his sturdy Longbeards and their trusty throwing axes.

Khorhil claimed second place, whilst Gor-Rok had a surprising loss to Lumpin Croop who’s fighting cocks made their arrows tell during this game.

Each player had managed 3 games in two afternoons, and fun was had by all, even Lumpin Croop’s player, the beer may have helped there. Infact we had a lovely drop from ‘London Fields Brewery’ called ‘Love not war’ a very nice red ale.

Ever since I read JRR Tolkien’s ‘The Hobbit’ I have been gripped by fantasy fiction, table top games and role play, and it set up a long time love of all that is dwarf.

This is why when it came to choosing an army to play Warhammer Fantasy by Games Workshop (GW), way back as far as the  early 1990’s, it was the ale quaffing beardies that I opted for.

Most fantasy players have a love / hate relationship with GW, who produce rules / gaming systems and churn out some fantastic sculpts. They are a large driving force in the fantasy gaming arena. However many people believe that they are over priced, and make un-necessary changes to rules their rules, forcing people to spend more money. It is a fine line they tread, one could say between market place bully boy, and table top innovators, it has to be remembered that it is companies such as GW breath life into the gaming community and have helped make it what it is.

There are however some companies out there who make absolutely fantastic models at a fraction of the price of GW, and these can easily be utilised in un-official tournaments,  at clubs and in house games.

Right now I am really impressed with ‘Avatars of War’ Pathfinders who would make excellent models for Dwarf Rangers, I’m quite tempted to get a unit to accompany my Josef Bugman (A GW special character) into battle:

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