Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Blood Angels Champion

Thomas brought his Almaran the Gold figure from Reaper over on Sunday and I offered to convert it for him. We used a pair of Space Marine legs but I couldn't get the fit right...

Enter the resin base.

The uneveness of the base gives some justification to his somewhat awkward pose.
Hopefully he will look OK once fully painted...

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Blood Bowl Game 3 and FUBAR 40K Game 1

My computer had a booting problem and as my keyboard was a wireless one I couldn't remedy the problem until I bought a cheap (S$11) 'corded' keyboard after today's game.

I am a computer-idiot, but after some trial and error I managed to reboot it from an alternative drive or something... but all the desktop icons and files are gone and so are many of the programmes, including my usual picture editor, so I am only uploading two today...

The first is from Game 3 of our Blood Bowl series. fg's Nurgle team scored their first touchdown of the series, but I managed to equalise in the second half and a lucky deviation on the kick-off dice placed the ball right on his end-zone, making it impossible for him to score in the remaining time. We drew the game, but three if his players gained new skills at the end of the game; none of mine did, plus my fans, disappointed by my performance, deserted me, leaving me with a lower Fan Factor.

The second picture is from our first FUBAR game. Thomas fielded his Blood Angels in their first game ever. The scenario was designed around the crashed spacecraft from GW, the objective being to capture the pilot of that craft alive and bring her off one's table-edge.

Martin and I took my green Marines (I really ought to give them a name...) and decided to set up firing positions to whittle down Thomas' Blood Angels as they approach. This worked to a certain extent - Thomas lost 2 squads trying to reach the pilot. However, just when we were going to grab the pilot ourselves his Dante figure leapt forward, seized her, and in the next activation leapt away. We had one chance to intercept him with our closest squad (my Assault Marines with jump-packs having spent most of the game in 'reserve', having failed most of their activations), but we failed the activation and lost our chance.

The game wasn't long enough for us to get a good appreciation of the rules, but the basics seem to be right - my Terminators got caught in the open and were decimated. We did forget the rule about squads with 50% strength left falling back on a failed activation, which would have extricated them though. We probably will need to house-rule some terrain penalties for movement, but I am keen to give them another try.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Strandhogg news

Ken Altfather (a suitable name for the author of a set of Viking Age wargame rules if there ever was one), in a reply to a post on TMP, had revealed that he may still have copies of the rules.

Thank You for the kind words about Standhogg. It was really just a labor of love on my part more than anything else. I am glad to see that folks are still enjoying them.

As my friend Scott stated, I created the rules all in house. After a while it got to be a bit much to keep up with despite the day job and family. It's too bad really. I was half way done with updates for Irish, Scots, Crusaders and Moors.

I am headed out of town for T-day but when I return I can see if I still have any complete sets left. If you are interested please drop me a note at Kaltfather1 at Rochester DOT RR DOT Com.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving.


So if you have been hunting for a copy, drop him an email!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Scout Squad

I'm still waiting for my latest order of resin bases to arrive to base the ones I painted today, but they are all done.

I feel a little guilty fielding these figures in my Space Marine force, not because they are not official GW or WYSIWYG, but because of the sexist sci-fi equivalent of the "chainmail bikini" some of them are wearing. Despite that, they are all very nice sculpts.

I can't decide which one of them I like best: the MG gunner on the left has that "No. Have you?" attitude about her, the figure next to her has a very dynamic pose (and beautifully-sculpted coat), and the figure on the right is the Reaper figure (based on the movie "Sucker Punch" no doubt) that started this little group to begin with.

I like that they all have a certain Soviet whiff about them, and that means I can expand this force by adding any similarly styled female sci-fi figures I come across in the future.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Equal Opportunity Recruitment

Here are two of the Urban Mammoth female soldiers I have been painting up as the Scout Squad for my Space Marines force. I've chosen a flatter shade of green for them as the Citadel Dark Angels Green has a glossy finish; it's actually the same green on my older marines.

Although they have an anime look about them, I have chosen to paint them all with black hair... let's just say these women are such dedicated soldiers, they dyed their hair and eyebrows black (but still didn't wear camouflage paint on their faces...).

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Four of my gaming buddies are teachers, so campaign season follows the school holidays - and December is the long school break.

Thomas sent me a photo of his Blood Angels today; it just so happens that I took a photo of all my painted Space Marines this afternoon too.


In the meantime Adrian has been making steady progress on his Ultramarines. If everything goes according to plan, we should be playing our first game of 40K this year.

Also, Rick the Flag Dude sent me free flags to replace the ones he sent me earlier when he found out that the shade of blue on the first batch didn't match that of the Maverick Models ones. Thanks once again, Rick.

I also took a shot of all my dwarves (minus the female ones which I forgot...). I've been toying with the idea of getting some movement trays and then using them for maybe Impetus type of rules, but with 8 foot figures and 4 mounted to a tray I will only have enough for 7 or 8 units per side - not quite the stuff of big battles, eh?

Meanwhile, I am procrastinating on restarting my work on the Perry WOTRs and have instead started painting the female sci-fi figures I bought earlier; they can form a Scout Squad for my Space Marines force since I need another Troop option to make my force legal.

This weekend also see my taking advantage of Maelstrom Games' 25% discount on their Bane Legion range. Most of their beasts are too disturbing for me, but their beastman standard bearer seems to fit well with the look of the Avatars of War beastman warchief, which I have been eyeing for a long time now - I bought both. Maybe they will form the cadre of an eventual beastmen army (those Reaper beastmen look good too, don't they?) or I may never get round to forming a full beastmen army, but you never know...

Monday, November 07, 2011


A long weekend allowed me to complete my Assault Squad and Chaplain.

I like how the boys look, even if they did take me a long time to paint.

The Chaplain figure looks quite good, even if I do say so myself. He also marks the first concession I made towards 40K.

You see, up until now I have painted and organised my Space Marines in a generic fashion with no real adherence to any Codex; when I made the decision to refurbish them earlier this year, I planned to organise them according to FUBAR lists. Dan first offered me a Chaplain figure when we made a trade earlier, but I declined as I didn't really see myself having a use for one. Then FG just dropped one off at my place and said something about modelling it with the jump-pack on...

It was quite a while before I decided I would paint it, and then another while before I decided that I would paint it black instead of green like my other marines, as per the Codex - even my apothecary was painted green instead of white as required by the codex.

I then looked at a couple of forums before deciding to use magnets to make it possible to field him with the normal backpack or the jump-pack, and arming him with a plasma-pistol instead of a bolt-pistol - apparently giving him the jump-pack and plasma-pistol and attaching him with the Assault squad was the thing to do. With Adrian and Thomas making progress on their Space Marines, I have to seriously look at making my force kosher.

FG also passed me a special shoulder-pad - I like the words on them.

My force is still not 100% Codex-compliant - still needs 15 more vanilla marines and one vanilla terminator figure if I were to comply with the minima for heavy weapons, but hopefully the guys will let it slide.

With these guys done I guess I should go back to painting the Perry plastics, but I feel I need a break... Perhaps the release of their WOTR cavalry set will be the needed boost?

Monday, October 31, 2011

Pre-End-of-Year Review

On a whim I decided to count the number of games I've played this year so far.

With just two months left, the count is 16, not counting the solo test games I played. That's about two games every five weeks.

Not too shabby.

Let's see if we can break 20 this year.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

"Revenge, Gold, and Other Things!"

We had a rare Sunday when all four of us could make a game. I toyed with the idea of a starships game but decided to do a mutli-player Strandhogg game eventually.

For the scenario I turned to an old issue of Wargames Illustrated (#79, April 1994).

The article, by Dominic Cook (is this the same person I wonder), was titled "Revenge, Gold and Other Things" and described a four-player skirmish scenario set in a fantasy world but equally usable for ancients and medieval settings.

As FG and Martin arrived first, I assigned them the roles of the first two characters.

Martin (who played goblins last time and wanted to try something different) chose to play the dwarven commander, who must escort a mule train of gold to Fort Azak, across the river. He knows there are goblins nearby and has the option of calling for reinforcements from the fort; but while he wanted to stay alive, he would also welcome the chance to fight them off if they attacked without any help from the fort's garrison to win himself some glory.

FG played the goblin king, who must take the gold and exit the northern table edge (left of the photo). He deploys his forces on-table and waits to spring his ambush. 

(The goblins wait in ambush on a foggy morning...)
The dwarves hug the southern edge of the table as they move from the southwest corner towards the bridge to the northwest. As they cross the middle of the table the goblin king emerges from an abandoned farmhouse with his first warband.

The dwarves deploy their rangers to fend off the attackers while the warriors continue westwards...

While passing the woods in the centre of the table Martin thought it would be a good idea to scout it out... which turned out to be a good idea as FG has hidden his other warband and the troll right there!

Fierce melee ensued as both sides fed troops into the woods. As the situation started to look grim Martin called for help - a roll of 3 on a d3 meant he had to wait for some time!

Around this time wahj arrived, and I gave him the brief for the third player: the goblin king's half-brother who had come to kill him and usurp his throne!

Martin was worried when wahj started to deploy his figures, but wahj ignored the dwarves and charged his warg-riders straight into melee with the goblin king, who was alone on goblin's left flank.

Despite their numerical superiority the newcomers could not score any wounds on the king. In the meanwhile wahj's spy in FG's camp revealed himself and attacked his former comrade who was trying to lead the mule train away, and directed his other warband to attack the troll.

(The Goblin King fends off all attackers... Like A Boss!)

The dwarves took advantage of this sudden turn of events and despatched the remaining goblins and retook control of the mules, even as reinforcements became visible on the horizon.

After losing a warband, wahj finally managed to kill the goblin king with the use of an "Extra Wound" Fate Card while the dwarves limped off the table. The troll once again survived the battle.

The game was very close - even after wahj's forces came on table it was uncertain who would win. It was nice to see that a scenario written for a different set of rules worked so well 17 years after it was written.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Quick & Dirty Dice Tray

When I asked the guys if they wanted anything from Istanbul, Martin asked for some Turkish Delights. On the recommendation of the hotel staff (a post-grad student doing a thesis on the Bronze Age Collapse; we had interesting conversations - maybe I'll write more about him another time), I went to Koska. They had dozens of selections for just Turkish Delights alone, but when I saw this package, I just knew I had to get one. In fact, I got four, which proved to be quite a weight to carry home.

After finishing the contents of the first box, I gave the box a quick wash (may have been a mistake as there was minor warping afterwards), glued a piece of green felt wahj got for our FPW game (sorry), and I have a brand new dice tray for tomorrow's game!

It's not high quality wood or construct, but it took minimal time and I have 2 more boxes to use... provided the other fellows don't ask me for one each so they can make their own!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Yet More Space Marines and Dwarves

I managed to paint up a couple more figures this weekend.

The first one is the sergeant for my Assault Squad; I just had to give him the sword-and-shield combo since it's 'the thing' for my Marines...

I'm quite happy with the gemming on the sword; although most of my troopers have gems for their chest 'eagles', these were all painted by my brother (who is a great painter but has since retired). I think I replicated his technique quite well here.

The second figure is the female dwarf from Red Box Games. I've posed her alongside a LOTR dwarf for scale. She will be useful as a 'civilian' figure, or a priestess/druidess/sorceress type figure if we ever go down that path in our fantasy wargaming.

When I viewed the photo on my screen, I realised I have to touch up some parts of her face. I guess age is catching up.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


As part of the trade with Dan, FG got two boxes of Assault Space Marines, one of which he passed to me.

These are pretty good sculpts, and the legs are made such that only part of one foot is touching the ground, to give them a dynamic look. Add to that separate torso, arms and heads, you have a lot of scope for posing.

FG and I discussed various ways of basing them so they look like they are 'flying'. We toyed with the idea of basing them off the base with some sort of stem, but thought that would make them look like they are levitating instead of jumping.

Eventually I decided to work with something I already had and was familiar with: resin bases.

The sloping surfaces on the 'slate' type base I have chosen for my Space Marines meant I could pose them in a more 'leaning' attitude than I could on a flat base, giving the impression that they are propelling themselves off or cushioning a landing. The soft nature of the resin base and the plastic figures made it easy to drill and pin - had the figure been metal instead of plastic, it would be rather unbalanced and liable to tip over during gaming.

There are four more of these to go, plus a chaplain figure which I am planning to build with a magnetic backpack stud so he can be fielded with the normal backpack or a jetpack (the jetpack plus plasma pistol combo seems to be a favourite amongst 40K SM players, so I thought I might as well do that in case I ever play 40K).

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

More Space Marines and Dwarves

Over the past few weeks FG passed me about a dozen figures, which will keep me busy for quite a while...

The first figure I completed was this figure based on the Space Marine Veteran with Lightning Claws. I realised that my Space Marine force needed an extra figure to make a complete Command Squad (the force commander not counting as one), so I added this guy to the squad. His tabard and skull motif fitted with the ethos of my guys, but I didn't really want a Lightning Claws marine (not that I know what those do...), so I took a combi-melta arm off FG and coupled it with the left arm from a Death Company arms sprue I bought a while back. I like the way his looking at where his weapon is pointing.

Here is the reconfigured command squad.

The other figure is a dwarf from Red Box Games, specifically
Birgir. He is the only male dwarf figure from the range that doesn't have that large nose look. He came with a large round shield; the corresponding part of the body where the shield is attached is actually just a flat surface with two depressions to guide the fit - no painting details only to have them obscured by the shield!

I decided to make him a leader for my Huscarls, so I glued the kite shield in its place instead

The cape has a nice fur detail.

Friday, October 07, 2011

More flags, dude

When I decided to base my WOTR forces on an old friend's family name, I set about looking for someone who could custom make the flags for me. The first person I thought of was The Flag Dude. However, as Rick's place just got hit by a tornado, it was some time before he could reply and by that time I have already had some flags made by Maverick Models (see here). Nevertheless, I asked Rick to make me a set of flags anyway since I was curious to see how his pre-shaped flags are like in real-life. After three weeks of being stuck with our post-office, I today picked them up (along with some books from Amazon that took 2 months to arrive!) and found that Rick has given me an extra flag. Thanks, Rick.

Here they are:

And here is the smaller banner shown alongside the Maverick Model one. As you can see the colour is slightly different, so I won't be able to mix the two sets. Ah well...

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Meet the new team

With two-and-a-half games of our planned seven-game league played, I reckon it's time to finish the job I started more than five years ago and complete my fantasy Greek-themed Blood Bowl team.

They are a proxy for a Chaos Dwarf team - I confess that my decision to put together this team was based mainly on the desire to field a minotaur, and of course the Chao Dwarf team also allowed a Bull Centaur... it was a no-brainer!

So the minotaur represents a minotaur, the Shadowforge Dark Temple centaurs Bull Centaurs, the Wargods Spartan Warriors Chaos Dwarf Blockers, and the Shadowforge Dark Temple warrioresses Hobgoblins. In addition, the RAFM centaur (the huge one) was meant to represent a Bull Centaur Star Player, although within the time-frame of the league we are likely to play I may in fact use it for my starting regular Bull Centaur. The Eureka Pan/satyr figure was meant to represent the Hobgoblin Star Player. The Chorrim figure I just bought because I was buying the centaur - what's a fantasy Greek collection without some sort of a giant?

They are all ready to go, except they lack a team name... so if you have a suggestion, do leave a comment.

Thank you.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Warring States rules playtest

wahj and I managed to playtest the rules he wrote this afternoon. In general the mechanics work, but already we see the need to tweak the size of the table to provide for a more variable game. We'll probably need a couple more test games before we are ready to launch into the campaign proper.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Blood Bowl Game 3

FG received the stuff he traded with Dan during the week, so he came over this afternoon to pass me my share and also to play the thrid game in our play-offs.

This time he brought his full team, including the Beast of Nurgle, who looks very the part. He had 110K in inducement, with which he bought an extra re-roll.

We rolled 'Quick Snap!' on the kick-off table, which allowed his Pestigor to catch the kick and his other players to advance next to my players to tie them up or block them. He made a hole in my left and his ball-carrier advanced into a little cage. My right flank is tied (two of my skellies would spend the whole drive staring at two of his Rotters...) while his Beast tied up my mummies effectively. I sent the rest of my centre to reinforce my left.

Now FG had a chance to send his ball-carrier down the right side (from his view) of the pitch, but that would have required a 'Go for it' or placing the player on the outermost square, neither of which he was willing to risk. He decided to hold his ball-carrier in the cage for another turn, which gave my players a chance to organise a line and indeed get two players next to the ball-carrier.

But the Nurgle team showed their Chaos roots by putting two of my skellies in the KO box, and FG surprised me by running the ball towards the centre of the pitch.

Black Khnum, one of my two best players (Anubis being reserved for the offensive drive) dodged from a Rotter and knocked the ball loose with a one-die block.

But numbers were beginning to tell, and the other Pestigor picked the ball up...

... and ran the ball down - the Nurgle team scores their first touchdown of the playoff!

In our hurry to set up the next drive FG forgot to note down which Pestigor scored the point - thanks to this photo, we got the count right.

The remaining 3 turns of the half saw me fail my attempt to score after my mummy rolled a 'Both down' twice (despite a re-roll) trying to block a Rotter - he did score a Casualty though. FG picked up the loose ball after I tried to recover from that by passing and failing, and made a successful pass with his Pestigor, who gained enough SPPs to go up a level... if he survives the next half!

The Nurgle team seems more effective this game, with FG making effective use of his Warriors to make 2-dice blocks against my players and then assisting his Rotters to do the same. While I have two mummies (Strength 5), they were effectively tied up by the Beast and I found myself making crucial blocks with my Wights, rolling one block die and hoping to even the odds with their Block skill (none of the Nurgle players have that skill yet) and my re-rolls.

With two skellies in the KO box, my Undead team will face a bit of a challenge trying to equalise in the next half and then trying to prevent the Nurgle team from winning.

Random Sunday shot: Blood Bowl Dugout

I made this dugout for my Fantasy Greek-themed Blood Bowl team a few years ago out of a wooden plinth, some Hirst Art blocks, miniature bases, and wooden spools and plastic numbers from a craft shop.

I actually completed the dugout and painted the support staff before painting the players - in fact, I am still in the process of painting the players; having hit a block with the Perry WOTR figures and started playing Blood Bowl again, I finally started working on them again.

The various sections of the dugout are not named, but are represented by the Apothercary, the water-boy (counts as Budweiser babe - you know how these Greeks are...), and the casualty figure.

The two statues represent Chronos and Tyche, and are mounted on plinths that rotate, acting as Turn and Re-roll markers respectively.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

End of an era

I received a letter from Atlantic Publishing that my subscription to Miniature Wargames magazine has expired. I am of course aware that my subscription was running out, and was in fact wondering which issue would be my last.

I have been a subscriber for over ten years and own around two hundred copies of the title... and that's the problem: I am running out of shelf space. Fortunately, there is now a digital subscription available. I may not be able to browse the magazine in bed as I do now, but it does represent a savings of 45 pounds a year.

I will still keep my subscription to Battlegames though, even if they do have a digital version available. On the balance I find that I do read more of each issue of BG compared to MW, and I guess I still like opening the mailbox to see a new magazine delivered.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Blood Bowl Game 2

FG and I managed to play the second half of our first game and also complete the second game in the series this afternoon.

The second half of the first game was quite hilarious.

We rolled a Pitch Invasion on the Kick-off Table and a few players went down.

FG made a hole in my line and one of his pestigors charged through. My Anubis ran back to try to head him off.

My players managed to block the pestigor, and Anubis successfully picked the ball up and made a run for the endzone...

only to be blocked in turn! The other pestigor picked the ball up...

And was quickly brought down. Anubis stood up and picked the ball up again...

only to fall over during a 'Go For It'!

Fortunately there weren't enough Nurgle players left to stop him getting up and picking the ball up again. He finally made the touchdown, but the MVP for the game was awarded to a skeleton!

None of the players gained a level in the first game, so we went on to the second one.

The second game was brutal for the Nugle team. Their lack of Rerolls and the fact that the Undead team is a bashy one means that their main advantages of having a Beast of Nurgle and their Disturbing Presence were negated. My Black Khnum (Wight) and Anubis (Ghoul) each managed to score two touchdowns, although there were several casualties inflicted by both sides.

By the final drive, I had 7 out of 12 players to start, while FG had 7 out of 11. The Nurgle coach is not too happy... perhaps they need more than one cheerleader?

Going into the third game in the series I have a Team Value of 1130 vs. 980 of the Nurgle Team, but that's before FG has bought player/s to fill the slot of one of his Rotters who will be missing the next game due to injury.