Tuesday 30 May 2017

Trandoshan hunters

   In Imperial Assault, the role of main generic mercenary falls to the race of Trandoshans, who by their very nature as a species of big game hunters, fulfil this role with glee. The core set comes with 4 basic ones split into 2 groups and one of the later waves includes the named Trandoshan, Bossk, who I picked up figuring I could make sure I got the skin tones to all match if I painted him at the same time.
   As before, I am mostly trying to paint up those models that are appearing more frequently, or having a starring role, in our campaign games. The heroes have fought these guys a couple of times now, so it made sense to get some paint on them.

imperial assault trandoshans bossk mercenarys mercs

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Monday 29 May 2017

Dead Man's Hand - Down Under!

   On Friday night I managed to get a game of Dead Man's Hand - Down Under in, using my Kelly gang and my wild west lawmen standing in as state police. We played the No Rest For The Wicked set of games just to see how the Kelly gang coped and we learned they are nothing like any other gang.

The Kangeroo proved, when questioned, that we were playing in Australia and not the US. Figure from Eureka Miniatures.

We used the same set-up for all 3 scenes just to keep it quick and flowing, making sure we left off the American looking cacti. My newly finished Bank is in the background.

From playing 3 scenes with my mate using the Kelly gang we learned a few key things; The Kelly gang are hard, ignoring instant kills is a big deal. The Kelly gang losing an action each time is also a massive deal, my state police were able to run rings around them, or as both sides were just using pistols, if I had a couple of guys holed up in a building I could afford to wait and let him move a Kelly member in, knowing that he would only have 1 shot left, while I could respond with 3 per guy that survived. 
Every scene became a bit of a slog for the state police, when you can be instantly killed by a good shot, but he can't, you have to be a bit more careful, plus if Ned is on the board, you know they won't be running away either.

The image below was shot after the Kelly gang member calmly walked into the building using both his moves. The state policeman (sheriff in this case), got 2 hits, 1 of which was a kill shot, as that was downgraded to a hit, the next round the Kelly member shot him twice and took him out of the game.

We still have 1 day left of this bank holiday, so there should be a painting post or two fairly soon.

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Thursday 25 May 2017

The continued spread of Fascism

   Carrying on from my last post, it is fair to say I have the hobby bug in a big way, 3 weeks off will do that to a guy, so I have some great things on my desk at the sec including another project that I think outdates even my VBCW one.
   Before I got too carried away I wanted to make sure my B.U.F got finished, so I could get that fabled game in over the summer. I have now finished the second squad, the Lt and banner, a MMG team and an AT rifle team, which only leaves the tank as my purpose bought B.U.F backlog.

   The second squad in all it's glory. Again, the nco is a Russian WW1 officer and the squad has a LMG, but I have also included a SMG. My only real frustration with Footsore Miniatures is how they put their packs together, ideally every time I buy enough rifles to make another squad (and I do need a 3rd B.U.F squad) I would like to be able to buy a LMG and or SMG, but both weapons come in the character pack which includes both the Lt and the banner (neither of which I really want more than a single spare of). This squad for example was supposed to only have a SMG, but as I broke the barrel of one of the rifles I decided to try and convert it into a LMG using a vehicle mounted donor.

   As explained in my last post, this unit are from the Kent based Alfred the Great legion of the B.U.F, so I replaced the banner I made on my first ever post with it. I would like to have a second standard bearer with that banner in the future.

   The MMG and AT rifle teams are fairly self explanatory, my Albertines have been receiving some serious firepower over the last year or so, so to make the game even close to being balanced I needed to give the B.U.F some toys too.

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Friday 19 May 2017

It finally happened . . .

   As I mentioned a couple of posts ago, the lack of actual hobby while away, tends to lead to me getting my notebook out and planning what will go onto my painting desk in what order when I get back. While most of this falls to the wayside the moment I start painting, this holiday's notebook had one entry, not just underlined but, fully circled; VBCW B.U.F.
   VBCW was the first thing I blogged about and yet it is still one of my big unfinished projects, even though I bought nearly all the models I would need to get started a good 2-3 years ago. I finally made some serious progress on the Albertines last year but I still had to sort out their opponents, so, I decided that 2017 had to be the year I finished my B.U.F ready for a game before the summer.

   I had planned my B.U.F to be a generic bad guy unit from somewhere similar to my Albertines (who were, in my head, originally based somewhere between East London and the West of Essex), but as time has gone on and my understanding of the setting has improved, I have tried to fit them into an 'actual' unit. From my understanding*, the London based B.U.F legion was destroyed fairly early on in the conflict and has been replaced with the Kent based Alfred the Great legion, so that is the unit I decided to go for.

*Anyone that knows better
feel free to message in!

   My first 10 man unit with attached medic. While I will almost definitely use the Bolt Action rules to actually play the game, I am carrying on my plan of building all my squads to both of the 'official' VBCW rulesets standards in case I end up being able to use them for a game of that too.
   The bulk of the models are from Footsore Miniatures, but the medic is from Ainsty Castings and the sgt is a Russian WW1 officer from Great War Miniatures and seemed to fit my theme.

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Monday 15 May 2017

Thunderbolt - a childhood dream

   I joined the hobby at possibly the best time for a 40k player. I was able to get a good couple of years of playing the basic armies before Forgeworld really became mainstream and the power creep became a massive thing. Super-heavy tanks existed but no-one my age could afford one, titans in 28mm 40k weren't a reality until the first Games Day I went to and vehicle design rules in White Dwarf let you convert standard tanks to your hearts desire. As a kid learning how to paint, play and get your head around the hobby, this was great, but there were always a couple of kits that the baby Forgeworld did that you just looked at and drooled, swearing that one day you would own that.
   In recent years, Forgeworld have been dropping their back catalogue faster than you can keep up with it, two of my favourite tanks (Salamander scout tank and IG Destroyer) have both been dropped before I could get my hands on them, so when the Christmas bonus came around I made some mumbled apologies to my very understanding wife and skipped along to the Forgeworld site to grab a few kits that I was worried they might end up dropping.

   The Thunderbolt heavy fighter is just a stunning model and the Dan Abnett novel "Double Eagle' cemented the idea that I had to own one. The Thunderbolt became one of those painting projects where you end up wanting to put every plane based idea onto a single model, so I had to really limit myself to what I actually did, managing to get this down to just (my version of) invasion stripes and a pin-up girl on the nose. This is, very much, one of those models I would love to say I will get my money's worth out of, but if it sees more than a couple of uses in the next few years I will be shocked, although, we are planning some games where it might actually get to fly!

   The figures are a different story; the pilot is a Forgeworld event model from a few years back and really is a Thunderbolt pilot (the closest I got to a Thunderbolt at the time), while the ground crew are a few figures I grabbed from Colony 87 Kickstarter. While I didn't actually back the Kickstarter itself I understand the guy who ran it just wanted a way to fund some figures he was going to get made anyway and is selling off the back stock to anyone who contacts him, once it is gone, it is gone. Again, all three are painted in a variation of my Hervictus Imperial Guard colour scheme even though they are Imperial Navy, just to keep some coherency in my armies.

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Thursday 11 May 2017

The Kelly Gang

"I wish to acquaint you with some of the occurrences of the present past and future".
- Ned Kelly in the Jerilderie Letter (1879)

  I recently got back from a three week trip around Australia with my wife, to visit the various members of her far flung family that have made the continent their home. Now, I don't normally mention holidays on this blog as they don't tend to effect my hobby too much, although a few of my more interesting project ideas have been thought up on long plane rides or on coaches, but on this occasion I came home with two things I was inspired to do; One is for my model railway so has no effect on this little blog, the other, however, was that I wanted to do something based on the Kelly gang.

Excuse the poor photo - it was a quick shot taken to send to my Dad back home.
    I went out to Oz with a vague knowledge of who the gang were but no real understanding of what they meant to the culture of the country. Whether you see them as heroes or villains, the iconic armour has the same effect on most Australians that the green cap and bow of Robin hood does over here. As we went around the gaol where Ned was hung or the library that stores his armour the story became far more real, while Ned kelly has become a legend, he was a real man first.

   So obviously, the first thing I did once I had got home and settled down again was order the Kelly gang and Down Under supplement for Dead Man's Hand and start painting them in my jet lagged fug. The members of the gang, above, are: Ned Kelly (two guns in the middle), Dan Kelly, Joseph Byrne and Steve Hart, plus a random extra that Great Escape Games includes to make the gang work on the tabletop.
   I am really looking forward to getting these guys into a game to see what they are made of, reading the game reviews on other blogs they look like they should be really interesting. Now I am sure I have a 28mm kangaroo somewhere . . .

"Such is life".
          - Ned Kelly

Tuesday 9 May 2017

Psychic Auxiliaries

   Carrying on my plan of getting stuff finished, I am going back to where I started the year, my 40k Imperial Guard. It has taken a bit of a break, partly because I think you need to once you have painted too many of one single uniform and partly because I got distracted by other things. However, I wanted to paint something just so the project didn't slide into being a dead project but that wouldn't open the can of worms of 'now for the rest of the platoon' and a single auxiliary squad seemed perfect, especially as these fulfilled my current painting requirements; they were built and sprayed already.
   These guys seem to suffer terribly in unit reviews online, but as my mate and my, normal Imperial Guard playing styles are just so similar I needed something that would set us apart. Just for reference, we both favour lots of troops with no heavy weapons in infantry squads, lots of Leman Russ battle tanks etc with the only real difference being that he has batteries of big guns that I just can't match.

imperial guard wyrdvane psykers astra militarum

   I painted the models in colours that I felt would compliment the bulk of my troops, the same colour jackets and trousers, with the dark blue to match the Mechanicus element of my force*. This unit would be unlikely to be native to my guard's home planet so I decided not to go the whole hog and convert the gas masks (in my fluff the gas masks are due to them not tolerating other world's air as their own is so weird, rather than needing them because of hazardous conditions).

*Something for
another day

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Friday 5 May 2017

The Abominable Snowman

   This is another one of those hard to explain posts, but carrying on with my plan, this guy was built, undercoated and sitting on my desk in the way, so I had to be dealt with. The Yeti is from the same Kickstarter as the Were-Orca and was basically my way of justifying the postage from the states. In the metal, it is a fantastic model, standing a good half a guy bigger than your average man and being much bulkier.
   I kept the colour scheme really simple to highlight just how cool a model he is, only the loin cloth getting any real colour to it.

Back to painting some useful, I guess.
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Tuesday 2 May 2017

By hook or by crook

   As part of a 40k project I attempted half a dozen or so years ago, I bought myself a mad old cat lady* from Reaper Miniatures, the plan stumbled pretty early on and didn't really go anywhere, which left me with a figure I didn't know what to do with. Since then, she has alternated between my lead pile, bits box or sitting on my 'to do' shelf and she seemed perfect to become part of my project tidy up.
* I'm not even going to 
try and explain why, here.

   I see this mad old woman as the feisty member of my band of zombie survivors, back in her days zombies wouldn't be allowed to roam the streets willy-nilly and all that, and by jove, if she has to take her walking stick out there and show them some respect she will.

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