Thursday, 1 April 2021

A Tale of Two Taverns

It all started over a pint. Well, it was an argument over a pint. Actually, there were two pints, and they were arguing with each other. Yeah, that's it... Barkeep! Another!

It has been a long time since I committed to any form of hobby challenge. It's time to change that. My friend Noakes and I have decided to embark on a sort of hobby duel regarding two rival taverns. Probably the taverns are from different towns. But let's not bother with the details for now. The point is, right now we are planning to spend the month of April each painting up a regiment based upon the patronage of a particular pub. As of a day or two ago, none of the models had anything more than an undercoat on them. Here are some starting photos...

The patrons of the Fleecy Half Pint, which is Noakes' tavern. Apparently they are led by the baron, who is the guy in the middle with the eyepatch, and who is not in fact a baron at all, but a little guy with a fancy house and an ego. You may in fact observe that they are all quite short. Also, the banner pole really needs to be straightened...

Thursday, 25 March 2021

The Cleansing of the Rear Passage (Part 2)

This is the second part of the battle report Cleansing of the Rear Passage. You can find the first part here.

Orc and Goblin Turn 3

The Orc advance continues, except over on the far left where the arguments are just getting worse...

Tuesday, 23 March 2021

The Cleansing of the Rear Passage (Part 1)

A Warhammer Fantasy 8th edition battle report with Tim Stewart


"My queen, we are still having issues with the Rear Passage."

Queen Bellicosa stomped to a halt in front of the Ironbreaker as he gave his report. She was already clad in her ancestral armour. He favourite axe was slung casually over one shoulder. Behind her marched dozens of her best warriors.

"I know," she said matter-of-factly. "That is why I am here."

From around the far corner, a chorus of hooting and huffing announced the hurried arrival of a band of Slayers. At their head was a particularly muscular individual with a huge green crest of hair and an obvious lack of wits. Seeing the assembled Dwarfs in front of hum, he skidded abruptly to a halt, causing those behind him to collide in an undignified mess. Muffled curses and threats could be heard from the lower levels of the pile of orange hair, muscle and weapons. Their leader seemed not to hear or care.

"You're not going without us are you?" he demanded of the Queen. At least, that was what she thought he said. It was a little hard to understand him, given he had no teeth. Legend had it that he had crushed all the teeth from his head eating rocks on a dare.

Bellicosa simply shook her head. She had little time for Barri Stonechewer and his band of suicidal fools, but they might prove useful if they encountered something nasty during their expedition. The hold could not afford for this mission to go ill. Although the hold of Karak Nong's main gate emerged in the mountain passes high overhead, most traffic heading to the other nearby holds passed underground. 

With the rear passage blocked, life would soon become uncomfortable.

She hefted her axe and turned toward the gate. "The passage must be cleansed. Open the back door."


Right, so it was my first time back at the games club in an entire year, thanks to a combination of COVID19 restrictions and common sense. Tim and I decided to play a game of Warhammer, and then I took enough photos that I figured I might as well turn it into a battle report.

Dork's Uninvited Green Guests (Tim)

  • DW Dork Wildthrasher
    Black Orc Warboss with Battleaxe of the Last Waaagh, Heavy Armour, Shield
    263 points
  • BSB Ruglub the Collector
    Black Orc Big Boss with Battle Standard, Heavy Armour, Dragonhelm, Ironcurse Icon, Talisman of Protection, Shield
    145 points
  • W Wuzzup
    Orc Shaman (Level 2)
    100 points
  • OBU 25 Orc Big'Uns
    Shields, Light Armour, Full Command
    260 points
  • SO1 20 Savage Orcs
    Additional Hand Weapons, Full Command
    215 points
  • SO2 20 Savage Orcs
    Additional Hand Weapons, Full Command
    215 points
  • BO 20 Black Orcs
    Heavy Armour, Lots o Weapons, Full Command
    275 points
  • T 5 Trolls
    175 points
  • SH1 8 Squig Hoppers
    96 points
  • SH2 8 Squig Hoppers
    96 points
  • RT 8 River Trolls
    360 points
  • MT Massive Troll
    200 points
  • Total: 2400 points
Knowing that we were going to be playing in the caves, Tim avoided fielding any artillery, chariots or cavalry. He also ended up not getting any  mangler squigs because he wanted to field lots of trolls. Especially once he saw that I had nearly finished a really big one that he could use as a giant. He also elected to generally avoid goblins, given the Gob-Off is yet to be resolved and that uses enough goblins for everyone...

His list is intentionally not too carefully tuned - we had agreed not to field anything like souped-up unkillable characters. The magic items were an afterthought, which means it's quite impressive that he managed to stuff a 100 point magic weapon on his mostly naked general...

Bellicosa's Dwarf Doormen (Me)

  • QB Queen Bellicosa
    Dwarf Lord with Gromril Armour, 2 Runes of Fortitude, Rune of Stone, Great Weapon
    206 points
  • SS Snuggi Softensson
    Dwarf Thane with Battle Standard, Gromril Armour, 2 Runes of Iron, Rune of Stone, Great Weapon
    146 points
  • BS Barri Stonechewer
    Dragon Slayer
    70 points
  • LB 20 Longbeards
    Heavy Armour, Shields, Great Weapons, Full Command
    330 points
  • Q 16 Quarrellers
    Heavy Armour, Shields, Great Weapons, Dwarf Crossbows, Full Command
    270 points
  • T 16 Thunderers
    Heavy Armour, Shields, Dwarf Handguns, Full Command
    238 points
  • IB 20 Ironbreakers
    Gromril Armour, Shields, Full Command
    310 points
  • ID 16 Irondrakes
    Forge-proven Gromril Armour, Drakguns, Full Command
    270 points
  • S1 10 Slayers
    Array of Axes, 1 Giant Slayer
    132 points
  • S2 10 Slayers
    Array of Axes, 1 Giant Slayer
    132 points
  • M 12 Miners
    Heavy Armour, Great Weapons, Standard, Prospector
    140 points
  • OG Organ Gun
    Rune of Forging, Rune of Burning
    150 points
  • Total: 2394 points
For my part, I had decided to field a lord on foot (which you wouldn't normally do because shieldbreakers are a no-brainer). I went with blocks of 20 warriors and decent-sized units of missile troops, given they can fight in combat too. I did take a single war machine, but didn't make it too fancy with an engineer or anything. Just keeping it simple. I really need to paint up some more miners. I feel like an underground game should really have lots of them. Oh well, job for later.


You'll have to forgive the map. I made it using an ancient Java applet that Pete managed to revive for planning cave maps. It does the job, I think... Hey, at least you got a map. You're spoilt, really.

Monday, 15 March 2021

I have a War Wagon!

As someone who grew up playing Warhammer in 4th and 5th edition, I find nostalgia for that period to be very strong. I read every battle report and article in White Dwarf, and pored over the pictures. Every time I pick up an old model to paint it, I am conflicted about whether to paint it in a (rather dull) manner that is coherent with my existing forces, or to surrender to my baser urges and paint it exactly as it appeared in those magazines...

I didn't play Empire back in those days, but I have since accumulated enough of the older models that I have this same issue when I'm painting them. I find myself wishing that my stuff looked like the old studio armies, so that I could properly recreate the vibe of that era. I haven't given in yet, but the urge is there. In a similar vein, it has bothered me for years that I didn't have a War Wagon. They were a fixture in the Empire army photos of the time, and it always felt like a gap. This is of course rather silly of me - there haven't been rules for a War Wagon in an Empire book since the 4th/5th edition one. So it's not like I had a functional gap in any list I cared to make. But that didn't stop me really wanting one. And any time I saw one for sale online, they went for an eye-watering amount of money. I have a stupid amount of stuff, but I still don't really see myself as a collector, and hence I have issues with paying what can only be considered collector-level prices.

Well, in recent times I have finally had the means to do something about my terrible need for useless War Wagons! In actual fact, I've done a couple of things. First there was a Norba kickstarter with some suitably retro-looking War Wagons that I backed. With the last year being what it has been, I'm not entirely sure when those models will arrive. And then along came another option, in the form of 3d printable files from Magori Miniatures. This would mean I could print unlimited War Wagons!! So I could really double down on my largely unusable models. This was perfect. I had to do it. And so I did. I became a patron, and I printed 2 War Wagons. Just the 2, so far. But I can always make more...

Of course, I say I printed 2, but so far I have only painted 1 of them. The other awaits assembly. And there are some learnings from this one that may or may not be acted upon.

A War Wagon by Magori Miniatures, with traditional GW barded warhorses. At the time, the wagon only came with unbarded horses and that didn't fit the traditional vibe I was going for. So I stole the horses from elsewhere. There is muttering coming from one of my bags of unassembled knights, I think... Amusingly, the designer added some barded horses maybe one day after I stuck this all together.

Tuesday, 16 February 2021

Blood Bowl High Elves

The world continues to spin, and we seem to be cycling in and out of lockdowns due to COVID19. It has been some time since I last managed a game of Warhammer or Kings of War... Probably close to a year, really. However, we have recently started up another Blood Bowl league and I've managed a few games of that. I have even managed to build and paint a team!

All of these players are 3D printed from bits from Ilhadiel, who has been rather prolific in producing models for specific armies (Elves, Herd/Nature/Beastmen, Varangur/Chaos and various other odds and ends). The models tend not to have excessively elaborate detail, but they have a particular style that I quite like. In particular I do like the range of Elf helmets spread across the units.

This is a High Elf team, but I've also printed some slightly different parts with which I intend to build an Elf Union team for a friend in the same league. The models won't be terribly different, but I will obviously use a different colour scheme. And capes. Everyone likes capes.

(Well, maybe not everyone...)

Anyway, nowadays High Elf teams have Blitzers and Throwers and Catchers, and it all makes sense and is very boring. Back in the day those things were less obvious and more High Elven - Dragon and Phoenix and Lion Warriors, respectively. I used that as a queue for how I was going to assemble the models.

The bare minimum 11 players, but I was in a hurry to get a team on the field and I had some minor misprints that ensured I couldn't make any reserves immediately.

Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Orc and Goblin Army Photo

Happy new year! I can't believe it's been 3 months since my last post. Well actually, I sort of can believe it, but it fills me with feelings of guilt about my neglect of the blog and stuff, so I shall feign shock at how long at has been...

The new year has started much like the previous one ended. Events are cancelled (we'd normally be getting ready for a road trip up to Cancon now), there is no sure timeline for when the games club will be back up and running, and everything is in a strange holding pattern. It doesn't do great things for my hobby motivation. On the bright side, a few people have started playing some games of 6th edition Warhammer Fantasy (including a game that took place right here, even though I was not involved). It's good to see some games happening again, even if people can't seem to decide exactly what they're going to play.

Recently I've noticed a number of whole army photos popping up on my Facebook feed, and it has finally helped me get up enough energy to take pictures of another of my armies. This time it's the Orcs and Goblins. 

Somewhere in the vicinity of 18,000 points, and over 1000 models. It took a while to fish them all out of the cabinets.

Monday, 12 October 2020

River Trolls are coming...

 ... But then, trolls are very slow. It would be inappropriate for them to be finished too quickly. Let's just assume that I'd be producing them at a great rate of knots, but I am hindered by my inability to pass stupidity tests.

In truth, this post has been a long time coming. I did actually get the first of my 3D printed river trolls painted something like 6 weeks ago, but because I hadn't photographed him properly, I figured I would wait before posting here. But now it becomes apparent that my standards were unrealistic. Who knows when I'll actually set things up and take proper photos? So it's best just to use what I already have here...

I started off painting this guy as a prototype, and all I really knew was that he was going to have a blue-green skin colour and that his belly would be a different tone. Not having a clearer picture than this proved a bit of a blocker for me, and I was fiddling with lots of different paints to try to work out if I could blend it into a light skin tone or something else. In the end I went for a purple-light grey sort of thing. Even the basic blue-green of the skin didn't really come out the way I had imagined it would under my plan, but I'm OK with it anyway. I have questionable standards, after all.

He's actually one of the river trolls I converted after printing. I'm pretty sure I chose him at random. You can get a decent feel for the theoretically blue-green skin (which is really mostly green) here. 
The skin gets roughly blended to purple for the belly, which is eventually highlighted up with a light grey colour. I've already forgotten exactly which colours I used. I'll regret that later.
His back is a bit rough, and actually includes a few places where I didn't do a good enough job of cleaning off the printing supports. He was black resin, undercoated black, printed in bulk. By the time it was easy to see these details, he already had paint on him. And in real life, these details really just look like little bumps or warts. They don't bother me enough to go back and fix them.

In the end, once he had his little details done and was based, I was happy enough with him. I decided I could handle following this as a rough template for the rest of the river trolls. I figure I might vary the colour of the tufts of hair a bit. These ones are kind of purple. I could easily have some that are black, some a little brown etc. Just things to add a little more variation to the unit.

I also decided that I needed to do some of the work on the remaining models en masse in order to save pouring too much paint and wash and wasting some. This could have been adding another hurdle for myself, but in the end I managed to give them all a base coat and a wash. They're all now mixed into a big troll pile on my painting table. I took this photo a couple of weeks ago. Nothing has moved since then. Stupidity, don't you know... 

The painted guy is in the mix, along with a few GW trolls I half painted many years ago and am yet to finish. They're on this ride too. I want them to fit in properly with the new arrivals.

In the end I'll get there. But I make no promises about how long that will take...