Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Dark Elf: Repeater Bolt Thrower

So after a very busy weekend of painting here are some of the results of my effort. First of the bunch is the Repeater Bolt Thrower, and its crew.

This was not part of the original project, and so was a bit of a surprise to get them. Actually we had joked how he had pretty much everything else, except the war machines. So he went out and bought 2 of them and handed them over to me.

Have to say, I am very happy that he put them together, as everywhere I read on the assembly of them they are just a complete pain. So I just had the lovely time of painting them then.

Originally the bolts were a bit darker, but updated them to be different than the wood on the RBT itself. For the overall color scheme, I just winged it for the coloring style however, and am glad that it turned out nicely.

The crew were also great to paint. Almost identical to the normal warriors, however they have a lot more detail, and since being metal, were also much nicer to paint up. All in all, they did not take much time to do up, something close to 6-7 hrs in total, which is nice considering that they were not a batch job. Normally for one offs, it takes me a bit longer to do the solo models due to having to remix the colors all the time. No rhythm can really be set up for painting it, and they end up like little Hero models being painted.

More photos of the rest of the weekend's projects forthcoming over the rest of the week.

In the meantime, here are more photos of the crew and war machines..

Monday, February 27, 2012

Infinity Battlefoam Beta Bag

Ok, I am not usually one to buy things on a whim.. wait wha?? Of course I am.. or so my bank account says.. With that being said, back in November, Wayland Games had a promotion on Battlefoam bags being 25% off. With this, and the fact that I have been travelling back and forth to Izmir with my Infinity, I figured this would be a good time to pick one of their beta bags up.

Now the first thing I want to say about this is that yes I ordered it in November.. however I just received it last week. I cannot say that I am overly impressed with the fact that it took forever to be shipped out. Of course this was due to the fact that it was on Pre-Order for what seems like an eternity. To be honest, if a product is not even close to being released, and there is a chance that it can be on pre-order for over 4 months.. then I think it should be clearly stated or not put up for ordering at all. Biggest disappointment concerning this order. 

However, since it has finally arrived.. how does the bag look and feel? Again first impressions is that it is a lot smaller than I had first envisioned. Although the description states the dimensions, when you actually have it in your hands it is quite small considering the price paid for it. At £31.20 normally without shipping costs, it was quite expensive, so thankfully the 25% off promotion was a nice added bonus to them at least. But when looking at what it is in comparison to say the Games Workshop carrying case, which retails for £36, but can hold quite a bit more. So again on that point I am not impressed with it.

These are the bad points of it.. and the ones that immediately jump to me concerning my purchase experience from Wayland, and the actual product itself. Both of which are large enough to prevent me from purchasing either of their products or services again.

The good points of the bag however is that due to its tiny stature, it will make it easy to transport my army on future trips to Izmir, or even England if the opportunity arises. Small enough to fit into a carry on luggage, yet large enough to carry my Nomad range. Not everything in the Nomad range, but enough to have several lists within the case.

On top of this, the case is solid. It looks and feels like a redesigned CD case, that is large enough to fit hardfoam trays. The top tray is perfect for Infinity models, specifically the Nomads. And having them to stand upright when the case is standing it another great feature of the tray itself also. The bottom tray however is a pluck foam tray. You can make the spaces as large or as small s needed. Which is quite neat, and now I need to figure out what is the best options for me to do with it. So far I have taken out a space large enough for the Salamandra model. Though the 1.5" foam is not deep enough to really fit the Salamandra, due to the little bit of leeway in the trays it is still fitting when the case is closed. For the rest of the pluck foam tray, I need to figure out how I will arrange the rest of the tray. 

So was the Infinity Battlefoam Beta bag worth it? Honestly.. not sure yet.. To summarize, it was good to see it finally arrive, the smaller size is good for some things ( travel ) but if I actually get all the Nomad models ( which is likely a given knowing me ) then it is not large enough. Price is expensive, and honestly, again am not sure if it was worth it. For sturdy or protection, we will see how that handles over time. From other bloggers that have done similar reviews it is known as being the most sturdy and safe for models. 

In the meantime, I need to finish off my Nomads and make this purchase worth it. So keep an eye out for more Infinity goodness forthcoming.

Size comparison.. that is a 100x150mm base for the K'Daai Destroyer

Everything almost standing up

Pluck foam. Already pulled a few pieces out that I probably shouldn't have. Thankfully they can go back with some Super glue. 

Friday, February 24, 2012

Dark Elf: Corsairs

To start things off with this.. the guy on the left there was the color scheme and artist rendering that was provided to me on how I should paint up this unit. I am not quite sure that I hit it exactly, but I really tried my best. So with that being said...

The last of the major units is finally finished! What a relief I can tell you! I have to be honest, but this was probably the worst unit to get done just due to the amount of angles, pieces, colors, etc that needed to be done for it. I only mean this in the way that it is extremely different than the rest of the army itself, and thus threw off my stride. Also the manner in which they were painted ( parts separate, painted, and then assembled ) drove me nuts for infantry models. Large models, I can see this happening, and am ok with it, but for Rank and File guys.. not so much. Less so when you have 50 of them to finish up! And I was just crazy enough to do them in a BATCH OF 50!!! What the hell was I thinking?

BUT.. that being said, they were a great unit to learn some new techniques on. Yeah yeah.. shouldn't be testing with clients models, but actually that is just how I roll so.. and in the end, they get better results because of it.. usually..

This was one of those times when they got a better result out of it.

One of the biggest areas that I have difficulty with ( and I think I am not alone in this task ) is to get the eyes done properly. Without making them look like the model is shocked, or droopy, or cross-eyed, or just plan old batty! After checking through google, and looking at some photos, I came across several places that just painted eyes in a completely different manner.

So what was the change? Well, normally I am painting the eyes up with the white being the base color, and then trying my hardest to get the black dot to line up in the middle, while touching the top and bottom of the eye socket, or else they look shocked with dilated pupils. The challenging part here is to line up that black dot in the middle. What I have seen others do however, is to base the eyes in black, and then dot the whites on the sides. When I first saw this, I was thinking "Really? Would that not be harder since the hardest part is to get the brush to hit those spots evenly enough as it is?". Surprisingly.. this is not the case. In actual fact, I am now finding that it is easier to hit the whites than the blacks. This is mostly because I am not aiming for the middle anymore, but just trying to fill in the sides of the eyes. So I have a gauge to work with which is the corners of the eyes.

Results? Well check for yourself, and let me know what you think..

For the rest of the models though the painting was not as "easy" to be honest. I did however again test out my ability to use the Airbrush on infantry models. I was able to get the Bronze, Green and Skin colors on the cloak done with just the airbrush. From here, I continued with normal brush for the washes and highlights, but I have to say that I am thankful that the airbrush I have is allowing me to get those aspects completed faster, and reducing the one aspect of the model I hate doing the most.. block coloring! So yay for that!

Colors used are for the most part the basic army standard color scheme. After chatting with the client last Saturday, we agreed that the underclothes would be purple, but not fully highlighted. The breastplate would be Bronze, but with some portions of it Silver. This was decided it would be better to have the belly aspect in silver, as the full Breastplate in silver was a bit much. The swords I did a bit darker than normal, only using the GW Boltgun Metal coloring here. I did wash them heavily with Vallejo Black Wash, and then redid the edges in Boltgun. I think the effect came out nicely, and I might be doing it more in the future also.

The rest was basic skins, purple, and such recipes seen previously with this army.

More photos below..



Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Fantasy Battle Rep: Dark Elfs vs Chaos Dwarfs

Dunno why, but this year is turning into one full of gaming, and my investment of the gaming table is finally coming around. Originally my main gaming buddy was to swing over and have a game.. whereby we would have played CDs vs NGs again. In the end, he decided to fly back to Izmir instead of staying in Istanbul for work. I mean.. why go back? And the excuse of "It's my anniversary" just doesn't cut it man.. I mean.. really now.. lame.. :)

Oh well, as it was the guy I am painting up the Dark Elfs popped on by. I guess he wanted a status update and ensure that I was painting his guys or something.. :) Just kidding.. was actually good to have him over what with all the focus on a life changing moment in my real career at the moment.. and was good to be able to talk it out a bit while throwing some dice around.

Onto the game..

Since I had just recently formatted my computer, I did not have the Army Builder anymore, so my buddy had to cobble together an army list from points and armylists found online. Thankfully many people use the same items, and he knew the army points quite well, while I went and used the old tried and true method of pen and paper with the actual codex.

We had agreed upon 2500 pts, no Dreadlords and no K'Daai Destroyers were used in the game. Also I reduced the use of War Machines in the game also since I have had the least amount of luck with them in the games that I have seen them being used.

Game starts like any of the games we have had in the past.. with the Chaos Dwarfs going first!!!

Lists were:
Chaos Dwarf:

  • Lvl 4 Prophet
  • BSB
  • Castellian Hero
  • 2x29 Infernal Guard, FC, 1 with Razor Banner
  • 3x20 Hobgoblins with Bows
  • 6 Bull Centaurs, FC
  • Magma Cannon
  • Dreadmortar with Ogre Slave
Dark Elfs:
  • Lvl 4 Hag
  • Cauldron of Blood
  • Assassin
  • 2x20 Crossbow Elfs, Musician
  • 32 Spearelfs, FC
  • 33 Executioners, FC
  • 7 Cold Ones, FC
  • 5 Harpies
  • 2x8 Shades
  • 10 Wyches


As is normal, we just randomly threw down some pieces of terrain, after rolling for them of course. Terrain included:

  • 1 Building and obstacle on the far right ( shown as ruins here )
  • Sphynx ( shown as the K'Daai Commission still in the works )
  • Arcane Ruins ( black barricades center ) 
  • Elven Waystone ( shown as the mounted Elf Hero on fridge magnet )
  • Altar of Khaine ( shown as Bloodthirster )
  • Normal Hill ( shown as a normal hill on the far left )
At least my battle mat has finally arrived, and so we are moving in the right direction for terrain for gaming at least. I need to buckle down and work on some of them once these comms are finished. Will be more important to me than getting any of my own armies finished I think. 

Chaos Dwarfs Turn 1

I have a good feeling about this game. I had taken all my previous experiences with this army into practice here, and made sure to minimize my chances of foiling it up royally here.

First things I did were to move the archers into the building, and get the rest of my guys moving forward. I left enough space in the middle to be able to have LOS with the 2 War Machines at the bulk of his army.

Magic phase was not as good as I had hoped. I was able to kill 2 Shades from a fireball, Flame Sword of Ruin on the magma cannon, and had cast Flame Cage to the executioners. However that was with a miscast, and thus he took a wound from the result and ended the magic phase.

Shooting was great! For a change the War Machines both worked splendidly!! Magma cannot shot, and landed perfecting on the spearelfs in the middle. With the bonus of the fire spell, they instantly wound ( not sure on this but my opponent told me it is so, so went with it ), and killed 20 of the blighters with 1 shot! The Dreadmortor cannon also landed a great shot on the Executioners also, making the poor buggers both flame caged and quaked! So if they move they would have to take a fire test, and a dangerous ground test! Whoo hoo! The archers in the building shot at the shades but did nothing.

No close combat yet, but was sure that it was forthcoming.

Dark Elfs Turn 1

In response to the first turn, I think my opponent began to think that this was not fun already, and decided to up his game.. just kidding.. he was in good humor for the game and took the lose of 20 spear elfs in stride. Stating quite clearly that I would pay for it later ;)

In the movement phase we saw that his left flank moved forward. Wyches running towards the building, and the shades following suit. Getting just out of sight of the CDs.. damn skirmishers!! Cold one riders also moved forward a bit, but nothing else moved. Harpies also moved forward to block the Bull Centaurs, and redirect their charges into another direction.

Magic was not impressive with no real effects taking place.

Shooting was also not very interesting. 3 Archers in the building died from the repeater crossbow elfs.

Again no close combat as yet.

Chaos Dwarfs Turn 2

Feeling lucky, and that I have the Dark Elfs on the run ( and it was only Turn 1!! ) I begin to get a bit over excited with the game and press forward. Perhaps a bit too far..

Movement sees the right CDs moving forward, and the center CDs attempting to charge the Shades. However I miss this by 1 inch!!! If this had succeeded it would have thrown his battle line into ruins, as I would have easily overrun the Shades with the CDs. Oh well.. but it was foreboding on things to come. Bull Centaurs took the bait, and charged the Harpies, took 1 wound, but destroyed them in the process, but only over ran by 6 or 7 inches. Lining themselves up for a perfect flank charge from the Executioners.

Magic phase was just appalling.. attempting to cast fireball on the damn shades that were not charged, I failed to cast!!!! Needing 10 for the larger version, and only getting 9!!! Meaning that I could not cast the Flame Cage on the Executioners!! Bull Centaurs were going to be in trouble next turn.

Shooting followed the path of magic with BOTH of the war machines misfiring!!! Magma is out for 2 turns, but the Dreadmortor blowing itself up. First and last time he comes out. Archers in the building killed 1 wych, and the other archers killing 2 crossbow elfs on the far left.

Not the best turn, and motivation decreased a lot after this one. Poor Chaos Dwarfs..

Dark Elfs Turn 2

Taking the queue that the game could turn around now, the Dark Elfs move in for the kill in many areas.

Wyches charge the archers in the building, Shades move around the CD units, focusing on the Magma cannon. So much hate towards this poor machine. Executioners, freed from their Flame prison and quake status, charge the Bull Centaurs. Crossbow elfs move out of the way on both sides.

Magic see the Bull Centaurs getting -2 WS and -2 T. Not a good combo when up against Executioners on the flank :(

Shooting sees some Chaos Dwarfs dying, but not enough to matter. The realization that these 2 units of crossbow elfs have been pretty much useless against CDs is becoming quickly apparent.

Close combat sees the Wyches beating down the archers, who flee the building, and the Bull Centaurs lose 3 of their brethren, and then break from combat. Still on the board, but for what, is the question.

Chaos Dwarf Turn 3

Loss of the Bull Centaurs hurt.. but we were not out of it yet.. just a bit confused on what to do now.. too many mistakes in movement in the beginning of this game, that needed to be corrected now.

Movement saw the archers on the right flee off the table, though the left flank rallies! So Bull Centaurs are back in the game! Right CDs reformed, and turned around, to focus on the Cold One unit, and Spearelf unit also. Archers in the center turn to face the shades, and provide some back up to the Magma Cannon.

Magic phase saw yet another appalling display of ineptitude by failing once more to cast Fireball on 3 dice +4 to hit a 10!!.. I mean.. come on now... whats up with this.. Hashut must be angry that I am not using his favored spells during my games or something and is cursing my magic dice this game. I was very sad.. very very sad.. I cannot say how very very very sad I was about this..

So to counter the bad magic, the center archers shot at the shades, killing 2 of them, and making them run towards the table edge. Once again showing that the Hobgoblins can do anything when faced against Shades.. too bad they can't do the same against other units.

No close combat occurred cause everything broke the last turn, and nothing was within range to charge this one.

Dark Elfs Turn 3

With the Chaos Dwarfs on the ropes now, the Dark Elfs began to press on them once more.

Both Crossbow units moved forward, the wyches left the building. Executioners charges the Bull Centaurs, and the center Shades charged the Magma cannon. The other Shades decided that it was foolish to run from lowly Hobgoblins and rallied to come back into the fight.

Magic saw more hexes placed on the Bull Centaurs. Another -2 WS, but a wound taken to the Hag due to casting this with irresistible force.

Shooting saw no one die, which is typical of the Dark Elf crossbows as of late. Just cannot penetrate that Darkforge armor!

Close combat saw the Magma cannon lose 1 crew, but also kill a Shade in return. Losing by 1, but being within range of both Prophet and BSB, they easily stayed put. The big fight between the Executioners and Bull Centaurs played true to the Executioners namesake. Losing 2 of theirs, they then slaughtered all the Centaurs, leaving none in its place. The Hobgoblins nearby stayed without issues. Its only Bull Centaurs afterall!

Chaos Dwarf Turn 4

With my flanks overrun, and my center still surviving, it was time to turn up the heat on these Dark Elfs! Was not going to just lay down without a fight.. and if they thought they were going to be just picking me off, then they had another thing coming.. So with that I moved both CD units up closer to the center, and charged the Shades with my archers.

To add insult to injury, the Prophet calls up to the Hashut to offer his sincere apology for not taking his lore. With this, he is able to cast off a mighty fireball at the spearelf unit.. and focused all the shots ( thank you random dice ) at the Hag! Frying her where she stood.. it is at this point that we are not sure if there was a louder cheer from the Chaos Dwarfs since she is now dead, or from the Spearelfs since she was dead and they could stop being slaughtered at her hand just for more power dice..

The archers, after witnessing the Bull Centaurs dying, take pot shots at the Executioners, seeing 2 of them go down.

Close combat sees the Archers do what they do best.. which is kill Shades. The Shades, of course scared that they are in combat with the Archers, fluff all their attacks, and get completely destroyed. Flame cannon is now in a great position to fry up some more Dark Elfs next turn!!

Dark Elfs Turn 4

With the rage of a drowning cat, the Dark Elfs push on..

Shades move up behind the Magma cannon, both units of crossbow elfs move forward. Spearelfs move towards the main unit of CDs, in what seems to be a friendly manner shouting "Thank you for killing that B***H.. please let us embrace in friendship.. ".. Wyches also wanted to express their thanks for the death of the Hag, but at the last moment realize that we are the enemy still. So instead of going in for a hug, they attempt a charge, but that small mind slip as to what to do makes them fail by 1 inch, and instead just limp forward going DOH! Cold One Riders move back in an attempt to hide since they have done nothing in all their games really, and are just realizing that they are full filling the good looks category in this army today. Executioners also charge the left most archers, taking no damage from the paltry shooting that they attempted.. was worth a shot at least ;)

Magic is no more thanks to no Hag.

Shooting saw the Crossbow Elfs looking towards the Magma cannon, killing 1 of its crew in the exchange! The other unit tried to shoot the remaining center archers, killing 1. 1 died from the hail of 34 shots. Again, these guys need to go back to crossbow academy, and learn how to use those damn things.

Close combat saw the archers get ripped to shreds by the Executioners, and they turned to face the center once more.

Chaos Dwarf Turn 5

With a furious intent, and a bent eyebrow, the Prophet summons his troops to charge forth. Giving the Spearelfs the "Hug" that they asked for..

So with that shout, both CD units charge forth to the SpearElfs unit. It could be said that this is overkill, or you could say that the Chaos Dwarfs wanted to give them a super huge Hug.. you know as they say, treat others as you yourself would like to be treated! The archers stayed still, keeping a watchful eye on the wyches.

Magic was decent in that we got the Flame Cage onto the Cold Ones, killing one in the process.

For shooting, well this was typical shooting actually. The Archers do nothing against the Wyches, cause they are not Shades, so obviously they cannot do anything. Though, the Magma cannon at this point decides that although he has survived this long, and that he will probably survive against the Shades. His best course of action is none other than to blow themselves up! Nothing like free victory points to the enemy!

As far as the hug goes, we see the spearelfs are not as tough as Chaos Dwarfs. So once the dust settles and the "hugging" finishes.. the spear elfs seem to have turned into a fine red dust.. with mangled speartips littering the ground. With this, the units just kind of turn towards the Cold Ones and scream out.. "Hug?" :)

Dark Elfs Turn 5

It is with great regret that I must say that I kind of goaded my opponent into charging me for that overzealous hug. TBH.. he didnt really have a choice though, as his choices were to charge me and get the bonus to the charge or to receive a charge next turn.

So with this in mind, he attempted to charge everything at the center blocks. Cold Ones landed, laying into both units simultaneously. The Wyches smack into the right flank of one unit, but those blasted Crossbow Elfs decides that it might be better to just stay back, and didn't run far enough.

Again no magic, but there was a thunderous "Hurray!" coming from the spirits of the Spear Elfs who died to the hug instead of the Hag's knife!

Shooting sees the Shades killing 3 archers, and the Crossbow elfs killing another. Many curses go up on the Dark Elf side as they are 1 casualty short of making the Archers take a panic test! HA! Once again the Hobgoblins show their true grit against the Shades! Eat it!

Combat sees many Chaos Dwarfs die against the Wyches, with 2 dying in return. The Cold ones take some out, but lose 3 in return. When the arguing between units finished, it seemed that the Dark Elfs lost by 1! Cold Ones stand firm, with help from the Cauldron of Blood, however the Wyches take off in a mighty scream! Panicing the nearby Crossbow Elfs, who also take off leaping over obstacles and even a house! Or at least the ruins of one.

Chaos Dwarf Turn 6

Last chances to try to turn this fight around. So far the Chaos Dwarfs are bunkering down in the middle of the board, while the Dark Elfs run around in all directions.

Movement saw the Archers turn to face the Shades. A last chance to scare them, and run them off the board hopefully.

Magic saw the activation of the Flame Cloak, which in turn killed 2 of the Cold Ones in close combat. The activation of the Flaming Rod of Ruin on the Archers however failed.

Shooting sees another Shade drop, unfortunately not enough to make them run.

Close combat sees the Cold Ones die, and the Chaos Dwarfs turn to face their opponents, backs against each other.

Dark Elfs Turn 6

Final turn to rally forth and destroy the heretic slavers!

Unfortunately it seems that the might of the slavers was too much, with both the Wyches and Crossbow Elfs failing to rally, though not running far enough to run off the table.

Again a "Hurray!" goes up on no magic! No Dark Elf lives had to be spared to cast Hexes.

Shooting sees 10 Archers drop to shades and Crossbow Elfs, however due to the majority of wounds coming from the Shades, they easily pass their Panic tests. Since no one is really scared of Shades.


It is with this last turn we calculate up the points to see what is what, and where do we stand. Surprisingly we find that the Chaos Dwarfs had eeked out a slight win over the Dark Elfs!!! 1204 to 1062!!!

Game changers being the charging from the Dark Elfs in turn 5, the Warmachines destroying themselves, and giving up almost 400 pts combined!

Note for future games. No more Warmachines. Those crew need to go back to the Academy and learn which lever it is that can make a shot, and which is the auto destruct button! That or retry the Deamonsmith in these armies and have him on standby for Misfires!

For the Dark Elfs, I think the take aways were.. remember that you have an Assassin.. and bring it out sooner before the unit it is in dies. Crossbows are not good against CDs. Shades should not pick fights with Hobgoblins, they just won't win. And Cold Ones are just awful it seems. Could be better maybe, but at the moment, they need some help. Not sure how or with what, but they need help.

Great game once more, better still that it was on the new battle mat. Only complaint I have with the gaming experience was the new GW Tape Measure that I got with the mat. It seems that the end piece is not large enough to keep the tape measure from sliding inside the case itself. So we had to use pliers twice to get it to open and extend once more. Currently a piece of Stickytac is sitting on the tape measure end, until a more permanent solution can be found.

Not sure when the next game is, but I am definitely looking forward to it.

Till Then!

Monday, February 20, 2012

MiniaturicuM Paint Rack

So after years of storing my paints in my drawer of a spare cabinet left over from a bedroom reno years past, I have finally bitten the bullet and bought a proper paint rack.

After a lot of searching online for a while, I stumbled upon a great article from Tale of Painters showing off a great review on one from a company called MiniaturicuM. Check out the article as it is quite illuminating as to why this is a good place to store your paints.

Shipping from MiniaturicuM was decent. Cost was decent, only 8.90 Euros, plus since Turkey is not part of the EU, the VAT was removed. So it made the price more affordable. Shipping took a little over a week, which was not bad, and the package it came in was very sturdy, with plenty of packing peanuts and lots of tape. Will be looking at more of their products in the future.

Have had it for a week so far, and I have to say that it is brilliant to have around. I know it is not much to turn around and pull paint from a drawer, but the sheer fact of being able to see the paints themselves when wanting to grab one is making a huge difference to me. Plus, it seems that I have bought a lot of duplicate paints over the years, some of them not even opened. Seems I have a problem with ordering things and just add paints that I think I need when I am not home, but need to top up my Maelstrom order to be over 10 GBP for their free shipping. Really need to stop doing that I guess :)

Anyways, check the article from Tale of Painters, check the MiniaturicuM site also, and if so inclined pick one up.

Only word of warning I can say about it is that it has a large space footprint. I knew it was bit due to the sheer number of paints it can hold, but it is still surprising that it can be so large. Will be interesting to see what 2 of them look like on my desk from Ikea.. but in the end I see it being better to have than not.

Other issue that I have with it is that the shelf sides area a bit short. They are perfect for the GW pots, but as you can see, I don't exactly have too many of them. Most of my GW paints come from the Foundation and Washes range. Plus some older range Inks, and a Boltgun Metal that I picked up recently cause, well.. I have no idea why.. again.. I think I have a problem with buying paints :)

Anyways more photos of it, filled with what is half of my collection of paints.

So many paints.. and this is only half of my Vallejo collection. Second one is required to store the rest of them.

Nice hand hold on the side, but honestly, due to the small lips on the shelves, I would not recommend moving it.

Top shelf is a bit scary as the lip is not enough to keep Vallejo colors from falling due to clumsy hands.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Dark Elf: Beastmaster on Manticore

Another monster entry for this army.. and what a monster it is.. this beauty was a royal pain in the backside to paint up, but was made a lot easier with the assistance of the Airbrush. Without it, I would probably still be working on it. And it probably would not look half as good.

Biggest problem with this model, bar none, is the fact that it is a large metal miniature. In the beginning I was attempting to hold it while painting it, but holding from the base was not enough, and from the model took paint away. In the end, I had to tac it to the Army Painter dipping can to use as a base. With half a pack of stickytac holding it to the can, I had an easier time with the painting of the model.

Skin was interesting though, as I had wanted it to be darker, but not black. What ended up happening was a technique I had not tried before, but will give it a go further in the future. Starting with the mid tone coloring ( in this case VGC Dark Fleshtone ), and then highlighting and shadowing it with more browns. This is not new per say, but normally when I am shadowing I use mostly washes to achieve the effect I am looking for, however this time I used VGC Charred Brown as a shadow color. It was hidden in the back of my paint drawer, and turned out to be the perfect color to shadow Dark Fleshtone here. Again, everything was used via the airbrush, and I really worked out some detail work out of it for a change.

Highlights included Vallejo Air Color ( VAC ) Radome Tan, and VAC Khaki. Both at different times, and at different ratios that I could not replicate even if I wanted to try. Thankfully it is a monster, so I don't really have to either.

Once all this was done, then I did some slight Sepia/Ogryn washes in a few places just to highlight or bring out the richness in a couple of colors, but no devlen was used on the skin.. which was shocking! Normally it is my go to color for these areas.

Rider was done like normal colors. Again this was a pain, as I am used to holding the model quite close to the brush itself, but because of its placement, and the weight of the model, my comfort zone for painting was off. I am still shocked that the eyes came out as well as they did, but again I took a different approach to painting them than normal. Normal I paint everything white, and then try to aim a black dot somewhere in the middle. This time, taking advice from other blogs, I reversed that. Starting with everything being black, I aimed to get the white sections put into the eye sockets. And I have to say, Emo goth makeup appearance aside, it turned out much better than my normal method. Guess those Golden Daemon winners do know a thing or 2.. :)

Base was just done in browns and greys. Proper basing materials will be added on top, but didn't want to leave what was already on the base in primer black.

Total time on this model was close to 6 hrs. Longer than the Hydra or the Dark Pegasus, but worth it in the end.

Corsairs are up next.. real big batch of 50 of them!!! Will see how I get on with them.. I expect this to take a while since they are complicated sculpts, and are all in different states of being assembled also.

More pictures below..

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Fantasy Battle Rep: Dark Elfs vs Chaos Dwarfs.. seems like I learned this time..

Annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd we're back with another battle.. this is the second battle during the same gaming session with the owner of the Dark Elf commission that I have been working on. This time however, I had taken all the knowledge that I have learned from the previous games with the Chaos Dwarfs. Main thing here.. not to use too many war machines, and to take no Deamonsmiths either. Since it was another 2000 point game, I didn't want to overload on the "special" elements of this army as much, and instead just focus on core basic principles within the army to do well. That and pray that it would work and that I got some luck in the dice rolls.

The Dark Elf player also learned from his previous games, and set himself up to play his army better. He removed a unit of repeater crossbows as they have done very little in the past. He also upped the number of shades to 2 units as they were doing well. 

Pre game set up

The armies were as below:
Chaos Dwarfs:
  • Prophet, lvl 3, Lore of Fire
  • Castelian BSB
  • 2x 29 Infernal Guards, Full Command, Hand Weapon and Shields, 1 unit with Razor Banner ( AP )
  • 2x 20 Hobgoblin Cutthroats with Bows and Shields, Muscians
  • 6 Bull Centaurs, Full Command, Banner of Stiding
  • 1 Deathshrieker
Dark Elfs:
  • Sorceror, Lvl 4, Lore of Shadows
  • Cauldron of Blood
  • 20 Repeater Crossbow
  • 35 Executioners
  • 35 Spearelfs
  • 7 Shades
  • 10 Shades
  • 6 Cold Ones
  • 5 Harpies
Somehow, the Chaos Dwarfs get first turn.. so strange..

Chaos Dwarfs Turn 1

Since it was the beginning, it was not hard to think what to do here. Chaos Dwarfs ran forward, fully ignoring the fact that 2 units of Shades are to their right most flank. The left most unit of Archers become furious, and kill 3 of their own, but having +1 to hit now! Bull centaurs marched over the ghost fence, but only 1 took a wound. Reaching the temple of skulls, the Champion of the Bull Centaurs calls out to the gods, and is granted with a +2 Initiative to his benefit. For magic, there was no real impact as everything was dispelled. The only warmachine I took for this game decided that it wasn't fair to play without his friends. So they committed hari kari on themselves, and blew up in a great fashion. But the archers passed their ld tests and stood their ground.

Dark Elfs Turn 1

In a surprise move the harpies fly out and block the Bull Centaurs so that they cannot charge anything positive next turn. Ok not really a surprise but these things happen. Shades moved up, one unit jumping into the building for cover, while the other attempted to round the building itself. Everything else just moves up, and the cold ones position themselves to charge next turn. Magic sees -2 T on the right most Chaos Dwarf unit, and shooting from the Shades sees them being reduced by 4 models. Cold One riders also received a 5+ ward save from the Cauldron of Blood.

Chaos Dwarfs Turn 2

Chaos Dwarfs on the right flank charge the Harpies in a hope that the Bull centaurs could get around them and charge the Cold Ones, but it was not to be, so they decided to charge the Spear Elfs instead. And that also was not to be as they missed it by an inch, and only moved forward 5 inches. Second CD unit reforms, passes their reform test, and moves forward. For magic, something happened!!!! Flame cage was cast on the Executioners in an attempt to keep them still and killing 2 in the process. Flame cloak is cast onto the Prophets unit, and the fireball runs out of gas before reaching the units in front of him. Archers turn to face the shades and fire, but in true Hobgoblin fashion do nothing, and no damage. Combat sees the Harpies losing 4, and running away, and the CDs moving forward enough to block the Cold One riders from charging the Bull Centaurs next turn. Things seem to be going along nicely for the Chaos Dwarfs at this time, however it is still early and many things can still happen.

Dark Elfs Turn 2

In a cowardly move, the Spearelfs reform and move backwards, allowing the cauldron to move forwards and more in range of the Cold One Riders. Executioners stay still with the flame cage on them, so thankfully that tactic worked. Cold ones charge into the right most Chaos Dwarfs. For magic, the Dark Elf Sorceress casts Mindrazor on the Cold Ones, causing them to be hitting very hard now this round. Shooting was ineffective, as the shades tried to hurt the Bull Centaurs, but they saved or were not wounded by the attacks.  In combat, the Cold Ones have the major advantage here. With Mindrazor cast on them, and the -2T stacked on the Chaos Dwarfs, you would think that this would be just abysmal, however, they stand their ground and only lose 7 in the process. Thankfully they are stubborn and have the BSB with them, so they stand and fight for another round.

Chaos Dwarf Turn 3

In a loss of mind, my Chaos Dwarfs charge the sole Harpy on the field. Completely forgetting that they have the flame cloak on them which will kill it in the magic phase, and preventing them from overrunning the unit. Such a beginners mistake! Archers charge into the shades on the right, while the other archers move into the building on the left. Bull centaurs move forward, stuck behind the now static Chaos Dwarfs! Magic has flame cage back on the Exectutioners, and Flame Cloak is still active on the Prophet. For combat, the Cold Ones with Mindrazor beat up the CDs once more. However in a really bad roll of luck, the CDs RUN AWAY!!! With ld 10 with the Prophet nearby, AND the BSB in the unit, they fail with a roll of 11, and then 12.. both my opponent and myself were shocked to see this happen.. as this completely threw off both of our battle plans. Thankfully, all other units stick around with this unit falling back. After the last turn, I thought I was doing well, but this turn made me rethink that assessment...

Dark Elfs Turn 3

Cold Ones reform by turning around, but then fail their ld test to move. Executioners do a go for it move, to charge the CDs, in an attempt to prevent having to be double teamed by them and the Bull Centaurs later. Due to flame cage, many die.. cause.. FIRE KILLS!!!!! They then also fail the charge!!!! So 7 casualties to a spell that just paid for itself. The crossbowmen charge the Hobgoblin archers in the house. They were too close for the HGs to stand and shoot, but stood their ground none the less. In the magic phase, the Dark Elf Sorceress called upon her gods and they granted her with 12 Power Dice!!! *Note, lots of !!!! in this turn due to the utter extremes that occurred..* However, even with the 12 dice in hand, nothing happened! Biggest attempt was the Pit of Shades on the Bull Centaurs but it was dispelled with 1 over the casting!!! Huge upset for the Dark Elf player there. Shooting was useless, and combat saw 2 HG archers on the right die to the Repeater Crossbowelfs, and the right hand HGs beating the shades in combat and making them run.

Chaos Dwarf Turn 4

After both sides having horrible last few turns, the Prophet turned to the Hashut gods and said a little pray.. hoping that a few things could go right this time around. Thankfully.. they did.. sort off..

The Hobgoblins on the right continued their charges after the shades, and ran them off the table. the 2 center units double charged the Executioners. Magic was simply putting up Flame Cage on the Spearelfs to try to prevent them from joining the central combat. Archers shot and killed to of the Crossbowelfs. In combat, the CDs were taking out Executioners left, right and center! An entire rank fell here, and although there were casualties back, the Chaos Dwarfs won the combat. Unfortunately, the Executioners stuck around thanks to being stubborn with the Cauldron nearby, and fighting would continue on.

Dark Elf Turn 4

Cold Ones rear charged the Bull Centaurs, and the Crossbow Elfs recharge the Archers in the building. Spearelfs stay put, due to the Flame Cage. Really liking that Flame cage right about now. Considering that it was getting off more than the pit of shades at a 3 to 0 ratio!!! Magic was not as effective as it could be, as only the Bull Centaurs were affected this round with a -1 to WS and a 5+ ward on the Executioners. Shooting saw 5 of the right Hobgoblins go down but in a miracle they pass their ld on a 4.
Combat on the left sees the Archers defending the building quite well, and taking no losses, but dishing out 2 for thinking that Elfs are better. In the major combat, no Cold Ones die, 1 Bull Centaur goes down and 2 CDs die also. However 3 Executioners bite it once more, and the fight continues as everything sticks around.

Chaos Dwarf Turn 5

Time to push for the gold.. more prayers are offered up to Hashut, as it seemed to work last time, so always best to push our luck on that yes?

Archers on the right however turn, and do nothing more. Flame cage gets cast once more ( that's 4-0 for those keeping count at home ) on the Spearelfs, again to keep them still while we finish up the combat in the center. Archers in the building kill 2 more Crossbow Elfs. Combat sees more Executioners die, another Bull Centaur go down, but again everyone is still in the fight here.

The amount of models, let alone units, on the table at this time are dwindling. It will help to make clean up much faster in the future.

Dark Elf Turn 5

In a bold move, the Spearelfs decide to join the fight even with the Flame Cage in effect!!! Quite a few Elfs are sacrificed to Hashut in the process. Crossbow Elfs again charge the building to the dug in Hobgoblins. Magic at this point is having no effect, aside from the Spearelfs now having the 5+ ward from the Cauldron instead of the final 2 Executioners. Shooting sees more HGs die on the right, but again for some reason they stick around! Go mighty mighty Hobgoblins!!!

Combat however is not so good. 8 Spearelfs die, and Executioners die outright. 2 Cold ones die here, and very little casualties on the Chaos Dwarf side. Elfs lose by 3 and run. With the Chaos Dwarfs chasing the Spearelfs, but the Bull Centaurs sticking around with the Cold One riders who somehow did pass their ld checks.

Chaos Dwarf Turn 6

In the end, we overuse the Hashut blessing and see that not one, but both HG units get Animosity! The right flank squabbles among itself doing nothing for this turn, while the other unit kills 2 of its own to have a +1 to hit roll! The Chaos Dwarfs chase the Spearelfs off the table, thus making them safe for the next turns anything, and also removing any magic that I would cast. Combat saw another Cold One die and a Bull Centaur alongside it, and that was that for the Chaos Dwarfs.

Dark Elfs Turn 6

Not much to do here, the Crossbow Elfs once more charge against the building, and again do nothing. The cauldron moves just because it could. Shades in the far right building kill 3 more Hobgoblins, who finally say enough is enough and begin to run, but stick around on the table to see the outcome of the battle. Close combat sees the BCs get stuck in with the Cold Ones, but no results to either side, and we just stand there going wtf..

In the end it was a great game! Why? Well it should be obvious.. WE WON!!! Actually it was a great game as it showed me a bit more of what the CDs can do, and what my play style is like with them. Heavy hitters like the Bull Centaurs was a blessing indeed. They are very tough with the Heavy armor, shields combo and being monstous beasts. Need to check if they get the 2+ armor save this way, but if so then they are worth the exorbitant price in points. Chaos Dwarfs in 30s are good also. Very solid, and barring any ridiculous ld rolls ( I mean come on.. 11 and then a 12??? but Hobgoblins can pass with a ld of 6? ) they stick around for a long time. Also was good to learn about reforming in combat, and what I needed to do in order to do this also. Allowed me to get in more attacks with the CDs in the Executioner fight, which in turn helped to close the gap there further.

Not sure when the next game is, but after my last few orders from various places, I should have a better looking table and have the proper equipment to play it with ( Tape measures in inches!!! Who would have thought this was difficult to find in Turkey??? ).

Till next time then..  
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