Sunday 31 December 2023

That End Of Year Post - 2023 Edition

   I know with how long a year is, it's rare to get to the end of one with your aims intact, but I have no idea what happened in 2023. I had a real solid aim for how this year would go, desert warfare for the first few months and then Normandy themed games afterwards, add in trying to artificially make some Dark Ages armies my most played this year - all with a smattering of Lord of the Rings as that's what one of my brothers is in to. Then out of nowhere - WARHAMMER 40K!*

*in caps to emphasise the point

   The big thing this year was having a second son. It turns out that one kid slows your gaming down but isn't unsurmountable, 2 is a much harder issue, so I've been gaming at slightly odd times with really understanding mates/brothers. I've missed not getting down to my gaming club SEEMs on a Wednesday night, but its one of those things. I suspect this will change over 2024, however, I'm definitely toning down my plans for the year coming.

   It was also a bit sad that once 40k hit this year, historical gaming basically vanished but this is as much to do with who I was gaming with as anything else - will get across the table from Neil again in 2024.

My aims for 2022;

  1. Focus my gaming. Going to try and focus on desert warfare for the first few months of the year then Normandy in the last few. But happy for a few other games in be mixed in. Going to be hard to score this one. - The first planned desert war games didn't go ahead and we played games in Normandy instead - after which all planned aims went out the window as 40k happened.
  2. Play more 15mm - 6x 15mm games in 12 months can't be unreasonable? - I didn't play any!
  3. 2:1 painting/buying ratio - a return for this aim. - I succeeded in painting more than I bought, but wasn't even close to a 2:1 ratio.
  4. 12x photogenic games - I quite enjoyed this aim in 2022 - probably a fail, but I really enjoyed the games I played
  5. No new projects bought at all. This one feels like the sort of aim I will accidentally break in the first 2 weeks of the year but we'll see how it goes. Also I have bought a few projects for 2023, so I'm probably already cheating in the spirit of this aim - I actually only bought three new projects this year and I think you'll agree I kept them small. Tyranids, Genestealer cult and Legion Imperialis.
  6. Play more scenarios - Go into a game with a set scenario and limit the amount of games that are just line up and kill them all's - I think we played 2?
Photos from games this year;

First game of the year, Norman civil war in January.

A day of gaming on the last weekend in January with two games sent in Normandy - 1st my WW2 Americans push to take the village of Sur-le-Where. While below the French try and stop an English army marauding around the countryside late in the 100 years war.

A day of gaming in the last week of Feb using my new gaming table at home. A couple of games of crusade era Lion Rampant.

Followed by 5 games of Thunderbirds - so many because 3 of the games were lost in a few turns.

Some Dark Age shieldwalls in mid March. These two Saxon units were absolute heroes, holding the centre at bay for I really don't know how many turns.

An evening of board games with my mate saw a couple of games of Patchwork and a couple of tries of Dodos Riding Dinos - which I can see being a really good group game.

The first game of LotR this year, with my Rohan vs my brother's Minas Tirith.

The only game of the Horus Heresy this year, 
the knight in the photo did less than the photo suggests . . .

Some more games while away with the family of One Night Vampire (not pictured) and more Dodos Riding Dinos - which was even more fun with extra players.

On the anniversary of Culloden we played a game using the forces from the battle but in a Franco-Prussian war scenario that Neil wanted to test for his participation game at Broadside. Photos of his British red coats rather than my Jacobites as just look at that column!

The opening games of the Fratribusia campaign and test games of Kill Team

The recapture of Osgiliath - a game that has been on our hit list for over a year

A quick couple of games in our 40k campaign with a game of Kill Team while we waited for the new edition and then a small test game of full warhammer 40k on release day. (Bad photo quality as it had started to get dark at this point in the game).

The big ACW game from the middle of the year.

The end of July saw the Imperium of Man launch Operation Thunderstorm across multiple theatres;

Then towards the end of August, Imperial casualties really started to mount up, but they were taking and keeping the upper hand. 

Two games below where one of my brothers was testing out a list idea.

Our first big game of the campaign - all 4 players around the same table.

The start of our experiments into Combat Patrol.

A surprise entry for Bolt Action again trying out the Hedgerow Hell scenario that has been on my list to play all year.

The big monster base - far less climatic than I had expected

Then the last game of 40k this year

D&D was a surprise late entry to my games this year in early December as it wasn't planned or looked for. I got invited to play with a group of non-gaming guys who wanted to give it a try.

I plan on keeping my aim ridiculously simple for this year as I keep doing big complicated plans that inevitably fail, so this year I aim to;
1. Play 12 games - this was almost 12 wargames but ultimately I just need to keep doing some gaming.
2. Get the unread folder on my kindle below 400 books - I built up a massive backlog on purpose but it would be good to get it to a manageable level.
3. Buy less than I paint - that old classic that I usually fail

I've promised one of my dad club mates a game of 30k and I need to get some historicals on the table at the club, plus both my brothers got new armies for Christmas, so 2024 should be interesting.

Only as I write this that it's dawned on me how little historicals I've painted or gamed this year. A must do better for next year.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a good 2024

Friday 29 December 2023

More sisters and a brother

   This is my last missed post for the year. With my mate's basic units for his Sister's of Battle army done, I turned my attention to trying to make sure that he has enough interesting options finished that he enjoyed the games beyond the first couple. So, the first thing I painted was an Imperial preacher/missionary that I bought him online. He wasn't sure what sort of characters he wanted for his army beyond the effectively compulsory Canoness, and with HQ models going for silly money, he didn't want to buy something that he then didn't use. This character got round a few of those issues by doing what a couple of his more expensive models did, for cheap(er) and I thought it would suit him to the ground. It's since been an integral model in his arco-flagellant squad

warhammer 40k imperial missionary preacher

   Next up is the last batch of Redemptia - by pure accident my mate bought another 5 not the standard 4, which means he has 9 of them which is a whole squad.

   Next are a pair of Penitent Engines, these were the first of his real heavy hitters and I wanted to make sure he had some before the new edition hit*. Both of these are the same monopose model, so I hacked one of their arms about to try for a slightly different pose, then varied the skin tone at the painting stage.
*how late this post is

   He then got a few bits for his birthday - in the late summer - one of which was a Castigator. This has been on the blog a few times as it has been a real issue for my bugs to try and kill.

   The unit of Sarcosancts were a recommendation from me, that I sort of feel bad for now. They were a massive phaff to built and haven't really achieved anything, they aren't terrible but for how cool they look, they just don't achieve what you think they will.

   Lastly are a unit of Retributors which gave him some slightly more heavy gun. These have only been used once and were a horrible surprise when I forgot they were there.

Thanks for reading

Wednesday 27 December 2023

Other Sisters

   Another unit that I painted up this year, started the post about and then did nothing with it was a unit of Sisters of Battle Seraphim. If I'm being entirely honest, I had mostly forgotten I owned this unit, other than it appearing on my backlog list - after being added in 2014.
   With the amount of 40k ideas I'd been having I figured it was worth getting these done and off the list - plus I could test out a painting idea. My idea with these was that because the metal sculpts are nice, but not easy to paint, I wanted to try Contrast for the harder colours* and they turned out to be so much easier to paint, with one colour's method being changed.
*looking at you Red

Thanks for reading

Sunday 24 December 2023

Speed Cult

   As the year comes to an end I've been going back over stuff both in my head and the drafts on this blog, the bits that matter more to anyone who reads this is the drafts that didn't get posted. One of those was another unit of Genestealer Cult*.

*no idea why I didn't just post these at the time  

   The Atalan Jackals, a biker unit, were a unit I knew I had to buy for my fledgling Genestealer Cult army, but one I knew I wasn't going to enjoy painting. In hindsight, however, they turned out to be quite enjoyable and I'm looking forward to getting them onto the table.

   I used the same colours as the infantry for the riders and the Goliath for the bikes to tie all elements together. 

Atalan Jackals gsc genestealer cult painted colourscheme

I am at that point where I am 50/50 on whether to keep buying and building this project, partly I wish I had done it earlier in the current campaign but they have been fun to paint and the game I played with them was also really good fun.

Thanks for reading

Friday 22 December 2023

First Company Terminators

   For the big game a few weeks back, my Space Marine playing brother needed to borrow some models to make up the points as his army was a tad too small. He borrowed my two Primaris Dreadnoughts which were ready to go, but he also wanted to borrow my squad of Terminators, which were not.

   At the time of asking, they had been built, sprayed and had the basic first wash, so there wasn't lots of work to do, so I made a focus of getting them done, which also meant I started working on the Terminator characters too - the Captain and Librarian.

   The Terminators are just amazing figures in person, so much nicer than the figures they are replacing. It has left me worryingly tempted to pick up a second unit, but there is so much on my list to do, it might be some time.

Thanks for reading

Thursday 21 December 2023

Baby Rhino - Legions Imperialis

   Before anyone says anything, yes this is a new project but it should be one hell of a project. I have been trying to start a Heresy project in Epic scale for a few years now* as I think it would justify the battles mentioned in the book far better but my attempts so far haven't been good enough to make it onto the blog as test pieces. So when I was told by a mate earlier this year that GW was about to announce their new version of Epic set in the Heresy** I went nuts and bought some bits early***.

*I was chatting to Mike Hobbs a lot about his project at one point as I was fascinated

**His club mate was one of the community play testers

***As you'll see in a future post

   I've been told I'm not allowed to buy anything at all wargames related until after Christmas, so while I am mostly keeping to that**** I have been doing stuff around the edges. In this case I got the free Legions Imperialis Rhino from the store to test how easy they were to paint and if I was happy with my scheme.

   I copied my 32mm Sons Of Horus scheme exactly to start with. I know my colour scheme for the legion is probably a tad too green as it should be a slightly more off green - tinged with a pale blue, but I thought for the sake of consistency it was worth trying to match.


Legions Imperialis Rhino Sons of Horus heresy

   I thought about which legion to pick for the project for a long time - for ages I had this listed as an Ultramarine project, then it swapped to Thousand Sons as I have a mate who is thinking about doing his Wolves in the scale, but ultimately, I don't want to rely on needing an opponent who matches*****, so I went to my favourite legion the Sons of Horus, with my first legion of Ravenguard who will be a small 2rnd army in the fullness of time. If I pick up Solar Aux, they can be loyalist too.

*****I've been burnt that way before

Thanks for reading - hopefully more next year.

Wednesday 20 December 2023

More Battletech?

  Carrying on with the theme from last post, I got the other 3 of my first side for Battletech painted up. I now have enough models painted for a small-medium sized game (if I understand the system right), so it is about time to see if I can organise a game. The weird thing about painting these is that I really enjoyed doing the first lot early this year, so I have no idea why I dropped the next batch after I started them.

The mechs in this post are; Battlemaster, Catapult and Locust.

I do have my eye on a lance of Clan mechs next - probably in a 3rd colour scheme, but we shall see how it goes and if I am still reading Battletech novels when I am next weak.

Thanks for reading

Monday 18 December 2023


   The game of Battletech that I had half planned earlier this year hasn't materialised - I'm sure my end of year post will mention this year has been nuts - but I've been struggling a little bit with motivation recently and forcing myself to paint hordes of Tyranids hasn't been helping*, so I decided to change tact and just paint something easy from my backlog instead of staring blankly at my to do list.
*the next horde is half finished
   This is first batch was the 5 mechs from the other side. I have a rule that unless a game is silly expensive and I know I have opponents, I always do two sides, so for Battletech I have the yellow and blue mechs as one side and these as the other.

   I went for a red base just as it didn't share anything with the models I had already painted and had planned to do a green/teal accent somewhere** but ended up doing a white arm and with a matching kneepad to break the colour up. Again, I don't think these are official colours at all, so are possibly a smaller mercenary unit in the fluff.
**possible a stripe across the chest plates
   The mechs above are; Shadow Hawk, Wolverine, Commando, Thunderbolt and Awesome

I could do with getting a game planned now as the last 3 for the yellow/blue side are almost finished as well.

Thanks for reading