Friday, 28 April 2017

German supply convoy

   I noticed back in Zomtober that my WW2 German force was lacking some really vital things; transports. I have a few cars floating about but nothing in terms of munition and supply transports. So a trip to Rubicon and an additional Warlord Games order and I think I have that issue fixed for the moment.

   The 3 identical trucks are all German Opel Blitz's from Rubicon and are what every 28mm German player uses as trucks, but the Ant Guy British truck from Warlord was my attempt to make my fleet more interesting. If my research is correct these little trucks were common at the start of the war and enough were made that I feel I can justify it's use in my convoy.

   The cart was something I really wanted to do. While in Bolt Action circles trucks and armoured half tracks are remarkably common the German army was heavily reliant on horse and carts, so this was something I wanted to replicate. The kit is from Warlord games and I have no doubt it will get a partner in the future.

Thanks for reading

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

A forest in the making

“Some of my kin look just like trees now, and need something great to rouse them; and they speak only in whispers. But some of my trees are limb-lithe, and many can talk to me.” 
- Treebeard

   A couple of weeks ago I painted up an ent on a whim and when I wrote a post about it, I mentioned that the rest had been packed away. Well it turns out I am weak when it comes to sticking to a plan*, so back into my lead mountain I went to dig out the only treeman model I knew I had ready built**.
   The model is from Hasslefree Miniatures, although I can no longer find it on their site. It is a weirdly posed model that is nigh on impossible to get a decent shot of but I really enjoyed painting it. There is something really satisfying about painting ents, I don't know if it is just that drybrushing the texture gives a win so easily but I would recommend it if you have had a bad day.

*It's even in my blog header
*I am trying to stick to
my plan of finishing models
rather than starting new ones.

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Friday, 21 April 2017

Stormcast archers?

   Back in August last year I finally cracked and started buying AOS Stormcast Eternals in the vain hope I might be able to get a game in. I painted my minimum army of a character and 2 battleline units and then, getting a tad carried away, bought another character and a different battleline unit for variation, which were promptly built, undercoated and then left on a shelf to get a light coating of dust. 
   At the start of this year I made the decision to limit the amount of new games I got into and to try and finish some projects off, selling those just just were not going anywhere. As part of this drive I managed to get a demo game of AOS in with my local GW manager (Andy in the Romford store is the best store manager I have ever met) and can confirm that the rules really are brilliant. I know, however, that I am unlikely to get a real game of AOS in before 2018, but carrying on my spring clean meant these guys had to be finished and put away to clear some space and it was a useful exercise to write down my recipe as this was another project I didn't do it with. The important thing is they will be ready when I am in a position to play and, now I have played a demo, I know they are a set of rules I want to play.

stormcast judicators aos eternals gold blue

   My unit of Stormcast Judicators and Knight-Questor. I wanted a to add a classic feel to my Stormcast and a proper shield and sword hero and a unit of archers felt like the difference in an army that otherwise felt really alien to me.

knight-questor aos stormcast hero gold blue

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Sunday, 16 April 2017

Release the Kraken!

“Men may sail the seas for a lifetime and seldom, if ever, come in contact with the nightmare monsters that inhabit the caves and cliffs of the ocean floor. Gazing down at the slightly muddy water, the men of The Unicorn saw a squirming mass of interwoven tentacles resembling enormous snakes, immensely thick and long and tapering at their free ends to the size of a man's thumb. It was a foul sight, an obscene growth from the dark places of the world, where incessant hunger is the driving force. At one place, down near the bulge of the hull, appeared a staring gorgon face with great lidless eyes and a huge parrot beak that moved slightly, opening and shutting as though it had just crunched and swallowed a meal of warm flesh.

("Fire In The Galley Stove")” 

   Not long after I bought the Juliette, I started looking around at other piratey things I could add to my collection and I found this kraken on eBay. I have no idea who actually makes it but I was really captured by the idea. As my ship project had stalled badly this went into my lead mountain and that's where it sat for quite some time.
   In my head I have a vague idea of doing a multi-ship free-for-all game that involved the crew on deck as much as the ship's cannons themselves, but I wanted some way of mixing it up and a kraken felt like the right answer.

28mm pirate ship kraken model sea monster

wargames blog pirate attack ship kraken

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Wednesday, 12 April 2017

The Juliette

'Take what you can, give nothing back' 
       – Pirates of the Caribbean

   The Juliette is a pirate ship I bought back at Salute in 2015 after being talked into buying one by both the guy on the stand and my dad. She was built within a week or so of the show, but there is always something in a big project that you just can't quite get right and makes it stumble, in this case it was the sails. I wanted to be able to move figures around the deck, but also have something that wasn't just a really nice hull with a dowel rod to represent a mast. So this was my middle ground, sails well above the deck, so the space is free for my clumsy hands. She isn't a display model, she is a wargaming ship.

   The ship, herself, is from Ainsty Castings, while most of the mast components are home made from dowel rods. The sails were made from pillow cases by my sister in law after my first attempts looked terrible. The details, including rails, ship bell, wheel and cannons are a mix of the bits that come with the hull and extra stuff I picked up from Games of War. The figure head is from Britannia Miniatures and is way too grand to go on a small sloop like this but it's pirates, so who cares.

   The guns are a laughable mix of four pounders and a single pair of six pounders at the front. I might need to do something about them if she is to have any chance of getting a prize.

   The crew are, mainly, from Foundry Miniatures, bought on the same day as I picked up the ship, but there is a North Star Miniatures cabin boy and a Reaper Miniature pirate woman. The parrot is also from Reaper, while the sharks* are from Black Tree Designs.
* You have to
have sharks

With the Pirates of the Caribbean series being on tv recently and the wife and me watching Black Sails, I dare say more pirates will grace this blog, and I already know exactly what my next post will be about. . .

Thanks for reading.

Friday, 7 April 2017

Halloween Priest

   Warlord games regularly do a tank for a tenner deal on holiday events across the year, so last year the two were a German Hetzer for March (mad as a March Hare'tzer) and a Priest for Halloween. Foolishly I didn't jump on the Hetzer but I did pick up a Priest and it became an integral part of my Cam'Bridge too far tournament plan, along with an AEC armoured car I picked up back in 2015 . . .

   The Priest kit gave me two issues in terms of making it Canadian; firstly, it comes with American crew, so to convert it to a Canadian unit I copied one of my club mate's ideas, which was to saw the helmets off and replace with British versions. Secondly, the Canadians used modified Sextons and not American built Priests, this problem I couldn't do anything about. The stowage is from a mixed bag of bits I keep on my desk that is filled from at least 4 different companies now, possibly more.

warlord canadian priest sexton 3rd division

   The AEC was a much easier build as I had nothing to do to it except make sure the markings were as close to realistic as I could manage.

I even managed to get onto a video blog:

Thanks for reading

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Growing forces

'My home is deep in the forest near the roots of the mountains'.
- Treebeard

   It has been a while since I did any ents but as I am having a bit of a sort through and a clear out and I came across a small collection of built and unbuilt treemen from various manufacturers that I bought after the Last March of the Ents game. The unbuilt ones will be wrapped back up and stored for later, but the built ones are too fragile for such a treatment.
   If anyone is on Facebook I would recommend following Warhammer TV, even if you are not interested in their products, their daily how-to painting tutorial is actually really interesting and they recently did one on how to paint wood. So picking up one of the ents at random, I decided to try it out.
   The one that was picked was an Otherworld Miniatures treeman, who bears a starting resemblance to Treebeard himself, and a few hours later I had a finished model that I was actually really pleased with. I am trying to keep all my ents in different shades and different highlights etc, so painting them all at different times is actually a good thing in this case.

Otherworld miniatures ent alternative treebeard lotr treeman painted

Now I have a bit of a hankering to paint a few more.

Thanks for reading

Monday, 3 April 2017

A weekend conscripting

   I got it into my head on Sunday, after spending Saturday with Neil and Paul from SEEMS and gawping at Neil's newly finished Norman army, that I really needed to get my arse in gear and finish some projects and clear my work desk as I have a whole Gripping Beast metal Viking army* that I really want to do the best paint job I can manage and not have to rush it at all. There are a few projects that I can happily put aside and walk away from** but there are a few more that are so close to being finished that it seems daft not to power on through and get them done rather than let them fall by the wayside.***
   Nothing special for my first post (just another unit of French Napoleonic) since that realisation but I am getting so close to a point where I could play with this army that it is getting really exciting, I just need to really start persuading my other mate to get painting.
* and a Welsh one too
** I plan to sell a few bits off too
*** I always seem to be in this mood in the pre-Salute build up

Thanks for reading

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Imperial Officers

   The base set of Imperial Assault is really varied mix of different units, some that you need in almost every scenario in the campaign and others that only get used sparingly. So, obviously, it made sense to put some effort into getting the figures used the most, finished first.
   Nearly every set-up includes at least one Imperial Officer, and as they were an easy uniform to paint I added them into my painting list as a side project while other bits dried.

   The below photo shows how I have decided to mark each group out on the board. Each has a colour painted on the back of the base, so it isn't overwhelming on the figure but lets you easily see who is who, then I put the matching colour token onto the figure's card, while the red coloured base is nearly always the red elite unit in the scenario to try and cut down on the amount of tokens on the table at any one time.

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Friday, 24 March 2017

More French conscription

'Soldiers generally win battles; generals get credit for them'. 
           - Napoleon Bonaparte 

   It's been a long time coming but I have finally finished the next unit for my Sharp Practise French as I am determined to get a game in this year. I reckon I only need to paint two more units* and then, maybe, do a British army too if I can't find a painted opponent.
   My painting desk seems to have split into two bits in recent months, the 'next in the queue' section and the 'one day' section, and this is completely ignoring the lead pile itself. The 'one day' section is fast becoming the area models go to when I want to get them done but something about the project is holding me back, but I have given up buying new models for Lent and it is this area of my desk that i want to focus my attention.
   I've said before that painting Napoleonic's isn't the most fun endeavour I have ever undertaken but actually this unit wasn't that bad once I actually got started. I suspect the issue last time was that I batch painted 16 in one go and then went straight onto the next 8, but I have learned the error of my ways in terms of mass batch painting and this is the biggest single batch I have painted since Christmas, preferring 5's and 6's if I am doing units.


Now to get the next unit built to keep the momentum up.

Thanks for reading

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Chewie and Han

   One of the things I said I wouldn't do when I picked up Imperial Assault was starting buying up all the main film characters. Luke and Darth Vader came in the base box, which was fine, but any more and all I thought I would be doing is going against the fluff by putting them into games (the same reason I don't tend to use named/special/real characters and/or people in games, I want my stories to be my stories).
   Then the 3rd mission we played called for Han Solo to be part of it. The set comes with tokens and card so you don't need to buy the figure, but I am a gamer, the chances of me not buying him once I knew I needed him were slim to nothing. Once you have Han in your collection it seems churlish not to pick up Chewbacca too . . .

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Monday, 13 March 2017

Anyone need a hero?

   I've had a steady stream of heroes going across my painting table at any one time and these 3 all happened to be finished about the same time. The jedi and the smuggler are the two characters my mate uses in every campaign game (we decided to keep the game interesting and let him rotate in any character he wants as his 3rd), while the wookie was blocked out at the same time as I started on Chewbacca*.
   The heroes from the main box have been really well thought through, with all types ranging from the tank, the techy and everything in between, a full on D&D party in the star wars universe.

*More to come
on that one.

Thanks for reading

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

You rebel scum

   Ok, so one of the main reasons I was starting to chat to my mate about wanting to play Imperial Assault was that I had just seen Rogue One in the cinema (losing some serious geek cred on how late I saw it) and the final battle just inspired me. When I saw the Rebel Rangers in the shops over the next few days, in my head they matched exactly what I was after, so I actually bought a pack before I had even worked out how to justify buying the starter box. Upon looking at the uniforms I have discovered that they are in the Battle of Endor style dress and not the ones from the end of Rogue One, but frankly, who cares too much?
   I painted the squad in Battle of Endor colours, as I am convinced that would look epic on a board and if Fantasy Flight Games don't do an expansion based on it I will be shocked, but they look professional enough that they will make great standard rebel troopers for any scenario I plan to put them into. Again, I would be shocked if I don't pick up at least one more pack.
   The guy at the front is Fenn Signis from the starter box set. When we tried the campaign play out for the first time this was one of the heroes that my mate didn't choose but on close inspection it is obvious he is wearing the exact same uniform as the Rebel Rangers, just with the addition of the scarf, so I painted him to match them, keeping his original scarf colour so it is obvious who he is.

painted rebel rangers fenn signis imperial assault hero

The rest of the heroes I am keeping to their artwork colour schemes which is a bit more of a headache.

Thanks for reading

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Blood Bowl Coach

   As ever, I am completely incapable of staying on target with a project and this guy has sneaked onto my painting board. I was window shopping online on one of my last days in my old job and stumbled across this guy on the Heresy Miniatures website and he screamed Bloodbowl coach at me.
    While there is a position on the team roster to buy an assistant coach, this guy just doesn't feel like one to me, so I will sort out that position another day. This guy will just hang about on the edge of the pitch abusing the players.

human bloodbowl coach blood bowl heresy miniatures purple

   The last things are two bases of wild bunnies. I'm fairly sure these are from Warbases but I am not sure when I actually bought them, but they have been sitting on a shelf so long that I had to do something with them.

warbases bunnies rabbits

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Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Probe Droids

   One of the things you come to accept in this hobby is your level of painting skill, my skill is very much in getting uniformed troops onto the table in a speed that some of my mates can't get over, but that only really pass the 2 foot rule in general. My biggest issue are non-uniformed figures as these slow me down, and if I am not enjoying the process, it can kill my enthusiasm quicker than a horde army will. This is what is happening a bit with the heroes from the Imperial Assault box, so I thought I would treat myself to a unit that I knew I would enjoy painting and would be quick and easy to do. Up hoover the probe droids from the starter set.
    I haven't done anything special with the paint job, it really is as simple as it looks, but on the boards they really look they are supposed to be there. With these guys turning out to be a lot more potent in the game than I expected, it makes sense they should look the part.

Now back to painting heroes I think.

Thanks for reading

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Rebels Sighted

   I currently have two main hobby plans on the go; I am planning on keeping a minimum of 30 minutes of painting a day before work, even with my busier work schedule and I am attempting to get everything from wave 1 of the Imperial assault set painted so we can play through the campaign with fully painted miniatures.
   These are the first products of this new regime; three rebel troops and Luke Skywalker from Imperial Assault. Much as I am sure anyone who has watched Rogue One is working out ways to recreate the final battle, these guys are just so iconic that I had to have at least a unit, and as some appear in the campaign, it was even more reason to buy a pack. While Luke just looked like fun to paint

painted rebels imperial assault

painted luke skywalker imperial assault

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Sunday, 19 February 2017

D&D Horses

   I started a new job last Tuesday so my hobby time is even more limited than it ever was, or at least until I settle down and work out what my new routine is. As such, this blog will change as well, being as regular as I can manage but also much more concise.

   The first of these posts is a bit of a cheat post, as I have only actually painted 2 of the models in it, but the horses are just too clever not to post about. My D&D gaming group are working our way through the Hoard of the Dragon Queen campaign book and we have reached a point where we have been given horses by an NPC as we gather we are going to be doing a lot of distance travelling in the next few sessions. 
   I did some research on how other gamers show their character is riding a horse compared to just being next to it and came across a variety of methods, ranging from having a separate model of their figure on a horse, to horses with cut out backs or simply stickers you put on the horse while you remove the character from the board. None of these felt right for our group, however. The system I liked the look of was one put forward by Stuffer Shack and it was probably the simplest system, just have a horse on a bigger base, if your figure is on the base, it is riding the horse, next to the base and it is next to the horse. The next step was to pick horses with colours as close to the horses we each picked but again, the website gives enough choice that I have done pretty close.

From left to right we have; Bucephalas, River, Osiris, Nibbles and Blessing.

    Next up are my only bits of painting; our group's half-elf sorcerer who had been using an unpainted figure since the start and felt left out, and our wizard's mastiff war dog. The half-elf is a Reaper Miniatures figure and is made of their soft plastic which I really don't like the feel of, while the mastiff is from Otherworld Miniatures.

Thanks for reading

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Don't move! - Now with brighter Troopers, although, they probably still can't hit anything.

   Yes, so this is another new project but I can explain. I was bought the Imperial Assualt starter box by a, very generous, mate and in preparation for our first game, I have bolstered the collection with a few expansion packs.
   When it came to painting, it made far more sense for me to start with the Stormtroopers. So that is what I have done and they were really good fun to do.

  Three of the Stormtroopers.

Kayn Somos - a stormtrooper commander felt like a necessary extra purchase.

 E-web engineers.

Now to paint some rebels.
Thanks for reading

Monday, 6 February 2017


   I bumped into a Kickstarter two years ago that was trying to make myths and monsters from the Americas, had a quick browse and went to click off of the page, and then something dawned on me, I had seen a killer whale on four legs. So back up the page, I scrolled and I looked at the price. I had no idea what I would do with it, but I knew I had to have one.
    As with many Kickstarters, there were a lot of delays but the model itself was definitely worth it. It went together really nicely, the cast was pretty good and it was fun to paint, my only criticism is the sheer weight of the body is going through one slim bit of white metal, so it does slowly lean forward over time.

   Now it is built and painted, I am still pleased with my purchase, but I still have no idea what I am going to do with it. I've based it up the same as my various fantasy figures as it is all I could think to do.

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Friday, 3 February 2017

Hervictus Dispatch Rider

   One of the things that has always bugged me about 40k, and to a lesser extent Bolt Action, is how the game ignores the extra support staff that help maintain a coherent military unit, of whatever size you are playing, so this is something my mate and me want to incorporate into our games in the future. This has lead to a lot of thinking about where these games ignore units entirely or change the role of others, and then how to go about converting such units.
    A unit I have always been curious about, and that I had an idea on how I wanted to convert, was a dispatch rider, especially in an era where the technology has gone so far backwards that communications can be as bad, or worse, than in WW2. We haven't decided if it will be a separate unit or just count as a bodyguard for the command HQ but it should be a really good addition to my fledgeling Imperial Guard company.

steel legion rough rider dispatch imperial guard comversion

   The model is a mix of parts; the bike, hands and legs are from Ramshackle Games, the body, arms and gun on the bike are Games Workshop, while the dispatch bag is from a bag of German WW2 tank stowage I bought from Die Waffenkammer a while back, all on the compulsory Warbases base.

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Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Hervictus 14th 2rnd Platoon

   The second platoon for my Imperial Guard regiment is set up exactly the same as my first platoon, 3 squads of 10 (vox and grenade launcher) and a 5 man command squad (vox and heavy bolter). I'm not trying to do anything clever with my basic troops*.
* I am saving that for
my interesting units.

First squad

Second squad

Third squad

Command squad

   That should be the hard slog done, my painting table should get a bit more interesting over the next few weeks as my troop types will start to vary a bit more and I can fit models from other projects back on again. 
   The one thing I have learned from this project is to make my painting batches smaller - in past projects I have been painting up to 20 guys at a time, which saps your motivation so quickly, but doing 5-6 in a go gives you the win of completing something more often and keeps your queue moving quicker.

Thanks for reading

Friday, 27 January 2017

Hervictus 17th support tanks

   Carrying on from a post I did a couple of years ago about painting up some Imperial Guard tanks*, I have added a couple of support tanks to my fledgeling army.

*It's interesting to see how I've changed
my blog style since then.

   The first is the Hydra, the best AA tank in the Imperial Guard. This tank was a must as I know my planned regular opponent has a platoon of drop troops all mounted in transport aircraft and with a couple of gunships to escort them in. One hydra may not cut it but it will give me a fighting chance. 
   As the kit is designed for a Cadian looking force I have had to convert up a new gunner that fits in with my force, in this case; it is the top half of a lascannon gunner and the bottom of a Cadian officer. The coat is slightly too long but he doesn't look out of place, which is the important part.

steel legion hydra tank 40k

   The second tank is a Griffon, a mobile mortar tank. This one takes a bit more explaining. I bought the conversion kit on ebay with the plan to use it as the base to convert a Salamander command vehicle, which Forgeworld stopped making a few years back, but when I had the kit in my hands I realised it was nearly as old as my youngest brother** and cutting it up just felt wrong.
   Again, as an open topped tank the crew had to be replaced, in this case; the loader from a missile launcher team, although, I might add a second crewman in the future.
   By all accounts this is a terrible tank both in the fluff and in the game but it fits with the mobile nature of my regiment and I am looking forward to seeing what it can do on the table.
**The kit was made in 1995!

steel legion griffon tank 40k

   Last up isn't the tank at all, but the crewman. Back in the same blog post I linked to earlier, I posted about a Cyclops demolition tank that I had picked up on a whim and I mentioned that I didn't have a controller for it. Well now I do.
   The body is from Victoria Miniatures and is supposed to be part of an artillery crew, but with a simple head swap and a few extra pouches on his webbing he fits into my force, (again his jacket is a tad too long).

steel legion cyclops controller 40k

Thanks for reading