This will be my first entry for Warseer's Fantasy Tale of Painters, since the one model weighs in at around 300 points all by herself (the minimum monthly entry for ToP is 200 points). I needed time to assemble some of the other models, like Glade Guard, so painting a single model seemed a great way to both get that time and to continue to work on the paint scheme.
I'm pleased with the eyes, basing, greens, blue, and the wood. I would have liked the Spites on the base to come out a little brighter, and I think the gold works well in some places, but lacks a bit of definition on her back. Overall, I'm highly pleased with the results, and feel that this scheme will make a gorgeous High Elf / Wood Elf army...in a year or so.
This past weekend, I had the pleasure of attending an invitational 40K tournament at All Fun in Games in Apex, North Carolina. Since I hadn't played 40K in a while, and it was a 2,000 point tournament, I dusted off the most fun things I have in my army. I only brought the units that I have painted, rather than bring an unpainted army, as I was going just to have fun and not to worry about competition.
I ran Shrike and Lysander supported by Lightning Claw Terminators and some medium firepower. I love running Shrike and Lysander so that I can make Lystander fleet, and not only were they a lot of fun to play, but they ended up winning me the tournament! Of course, this means I get to run the tournament next year, but I think I'll enjoy that as well, and since I've been running other tournaments off and on for three or four years now, the idea isn't a stress.
Other than that, I did some more work on my Spellweaver, and hope to have her ready as my first Tale of Painters entry for next month. I'm leaving for the Southern Assault GT this coming weekend, so I need to get any painting I'm going to do out of the way before going.
Just when I had Chaos in the Old World figured out, along came The Horned Rat expansion and threw everyone for a loop. Not only did it change the basics for the four Chaos Gods, but it introduced a fifth god as well.
The Horned Rat pieces were fun to paint, although there are (shock!) a whole lot of them. I decided to go with an "albino" Vermin Lord and gray and brown Rat Ogres and Clanrats. To make them stand out as Skaven, I used a green metallic color for the base trim, so that they would have a "warpstone" feel and also so they would pop on the table.
In game, the Horned Rat can easily swarm the table via upgrades or play very deviously by playing one more card per territory than is usually allowed. A good Horned Rat player can piggyback on Tzeentch, Nurgle, and Slaneesh in gaining partial credit for their corrupted territories, although Clanrats are a particularly tasty target for Khorne.
Since our local Warhammer Fantasy group recently changed its name to The Fancy Lads, we had discussed having T-Shirts for our trip down to Charlotte for the upcoming Southern Assault Fantasy Grand Tournament. Unfortunately, I didn't think we had time to get all the money together, get everything designed, and get the shirts printed. I did have a three day weekend however, and decided that we needed something to take down to the GT, and to take to tournaments in general. So I built and painted a life sized banner for us to take. The banner sits in a small cinder block foundation, and stands just under six feet tall and four feet wide. The stand itself is made from pvc pipe, and breaks down for easy storage.
The first thing I purchased for the banner was gray cloth, which I cut down so that it was the right shape. It's pretty thick, so that the paint wouldn't run through. I then took some masking tape and blocked off where I wanted the borders to go. The borders are dark blue for Duke University, dark red for N.C. State University, and light blue for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I thought this would be fitting since Durham sits squarely in the middle of these three Universities. One thing I will probably adjust in the future if I make another banner is using thicker tape, since even at very close range the spray paints left fine clouds of color over parts of the middle of this banner. I think it worked out due to the "orciness" of this banner, but I might want it cleaner in the future.
After I did the borders, I built stencils for the Orc symbol, top hat,
You can see the drawing of the pipe I considered using, but ultimately nixed due to space concerns. I went with the orc symbol because it's an iconic Warhammer symbol, was easy to draw (freehand is not a talent of mine), and because an orc in a top hat with a monocle makes me laugh. Everything was stenciled in except the cord attached to the orc's monocle.
The stand was the next part. I started with a small but heavy small concrete base with a pvc socket glued onto it. You can screw things down into the socket, so I added the appropriate size screw head to a five foot pvc pipe.
This fits right into the base, and can be attached and removed as necessary. On the top of the pole, the horizontal pole that holds the actual banner is made of a a "T" connector and two two-foot pipes on either side. This piece also detaches from the vertical pole, so that the banner itself can be removed as necessary and rolled up for transport. The banner itself is held onto the pole by five small shower rings.
I hope to hang this banner wherever our club attends tournaments. It's not ungainly or excessively large, and should fit nicely in places like behind the TO's table. It was a lot of fun, and I hope it will be a lot of fun to use as well.
One of the things that I've been dinged on in the past with my armies has been basing, and rightly so. I went with plain sand (Space Marines and Dark Elves), plain winter grass (Bretonnians), and a mix of dirt and yellow/green grass that ended looking bland (Beastmen). When I started the Army of Avelorn, I was determined that my basing would be excellent and would really add to the army.
Basing for the army begins with either dark brown basing sand or a mix of said sand and painted cork (for back ranks). Bright spring grass is added, followed by a combination of small rocks, lichen, and/or tufts of wilderness and swamp grasses. The idea is to make a really verdant base, and use the cork, sand and rock to break up the colors with grays and browns.
It's a bit more work than it's been in the past, but the idea is to constantly improve with the models, and I think it's a step in the right direction.
So I had a busy weekend in the hobby, but it's a super secret project. Not fair, eh? I'll be able to post this super secret project up on Wednesday, after I bring it to local gaming night on Tuesday. The only hint I can give is the picture above.
I've also just started working on my Warseer Tale of Painters entry for October, a Level Four Wood Elf Spellweaver. She'll also be the Level Four Mage in my High Elf army. For Tale of Painters, I didn't want to explain the whole Avelorn dual army idea, so I entered as a Wood Elf participant. I don't usually start with Lords and Heroes when painting armies, but I needed some quick Tale of Painters points while I assembled Glade Guard and such. Since I'm assembling and painting the bases and models separately, it takes a bit longer to get everything going.
So, the Beastmen are done and dusted. While they'll be the army I play with for quite a while yet, I have to keep my hands busy with a new project or two, right?
That new project is going to be the Army of Avelorn, which I've been dreaming up and for which I've been picking up models for almost a year and a half. The army will eventually consist of hundreds of models, and by my estimation almost 10,000 points without upgrades, and will be playable as either a Wood Elf or High Elf army.
For those unfamiliar with the background, Avelorn is the wooded area of the High Elf island of Ulthuan, where their Everqueen lives. The High Elf book describes the elves there are more "Fey" and similar to the Wood Elves, and notes the presence of Treemen and Dryads in the area.
I remember reading that and originally having the idea to make a large army that could be used with both books. Plus, I really liked the theme, whereas I'm kind of lukewarm on just plain High Elves or Wood Elves. Several other factors helped start me down the road, such as the great deal offered by Island of Blood and winning some old Wood Elf stuff in tournaments. I want to do some overlap with models that count as things in both armies like Glade Guard counting as High Elf Archers, but don't want to force things and will have units such as White Lions being only High Elf White Lions.
With a new army, I'm also trying to improve the look of things. I love my Beastmen, but there is always room to improve as a painter and hobbyist. For the Wood Elves, I'm going to try and use more blending and bright color, and improve from plain basing to a much nicer, scenic look.
Anyway, here's some pictures of my first model, who will be a Glade Guard in a Wood Elf army and an Archer in a High Elf army. I'm happy with the greens and blues especially, as well as the bow and feathers, but need to work more on the smaller eyes to make them pop. Comments and criticism is, as always, very welcome.
Our Warhammer Fantasy group has been kicking around different names for a while, and we finally put it to some voting this past Tuesday night. While there were some strong contenders such as The Durham Bullies, Six Inch Rulers, The Harbingers, and many others, we ended up with The Fancy Lads. Why? I can only assume that it's because of our fanciness. Perhaps it is because our Tuesday night Warhammer games resemble this classroom:
Group blogs can sometimes be a mess, but The Magnificent Bastards is great! Combining the mighty powers of the Pointhammered Crew with other fantastic posters like Domus, Rob Phaneuf, and Tommy, TMB is showing around two updates a day, and they've all been shades of funny, insightful, and informative. This is a talented crew in terms of painting and playing, and it's great to have a collected insight into their game world. I highly suggest checking them out and giving them a follow.
I did the usual things this weekend after finishing an army last weekend....not a lot. I went to the beach instead, and visited with family. There was a little time for hobby before and after the trip, though. During the week, I managed to put together the bases for my new army. I'm trying to put a lot more into the basing, and I'm very pleased with the results. I also assembled one basic model and one champion for the first unit, to use as test models. Finally, I got my paint station reorganized and set up in order to start things off. Not an amazing hobby weekend, but hey, it's a start!
The forces of Slaneesh were actually the first "army" that I painted for Chaos in the Old World, in order to try out some of the purple paints I wanted to use on my last few Beastmen. Although I'm not thrilled with how the eyes came out, I got better at it as time went on.
In game, Slaneesh has the versatility to either win by corrupting nobles and therefore gettting ticks on its dial, or simply by corrupting regions and winning on points. The most popular Slaneeshi upgrades allow for cultists to double their defense, making them difficult to dislodge from regions. Slaneesh can also slow Khorne down by disallowing combat in a region.
There it is, my complete Beastman collection, all painted. It's not on its actual display board, but on a bigger board where it all fits. The points are based on how you choose to count upgrades such as command and wargear, since the army can build many different kinds of lists. The models are:
One Wargor BSB
Three Great Bray Shamans or Bray Shamans
One hundred Gor
Seven Razorgor Chariots
Twenty Chaos Warhounds
for roughly 270 models and 5,000 to 6,000 points.
Total project time was roughly nineteen months, which includes painting about 2,500 points and then stripping it as unsatisfactory, and then painting the entire army again.
This is the final piece I painted for the Beastmen, and one of the most fun. I replaced the stock figures left hand axe with a chopped down version of the Bestigor great axe, and then used green stuff to create a "loop" that holds the banner to his back. Freehand is really not my strong point, but I gave it a go as I really wanted the BSB to look good. The banner has a grail on the front, and a scroll reading "Pax Louis". I figured defiling a Bretonnian army was nice and fluffy, and I might be able to draw a grail without it becoming a disaster. Hope you enjoy!
I finished work early on Friday and got off work early, so I'm in the middle of a delightful four day weekend here. It's a rough life some days. While I had company Saturday and Sunday, I finished up the Beastmen for good. On Friday afternoon, I put together all the movement trays that I will need for the army, assembling them out of thick paper, magnet sheeting and balsa wood and then priming and basing them, even for the units like Chaos Warhounds and such that get very little use.
Saturday, my eight year old nephew was at my house, so I put him to work helping me with making a display board. I used a smaller cork board, various spray paints, and some insulation board to make a pretty decent display that will pass muster to show off the army.
Finally, I did a little work last night putting together the first base for my new army. I really want to emphasize good looking basing on this army, so I have several schemes I want to look into.
Tzeentch was the last of the Chaos in the Old World "armies" that I painted up (aside from the Horned Rat), and it gave me a chance to test out some of the Reaper bright blues I had picked up for my next Warhammer Fantasy army. Combined with the bright golds, it was nice to paint an army that really stood out and was bright compared to the other armies on the table.
In game, Tzeentch can be a great early foil for others, moving their models around and generally having more magic than other players through low cost spells. I think that winning the game with Tzeentch may be the most difficult of all the gods, although a second place finish is certainly very possible. Bart did win the final game we played with Tzeentch by one point on the win track, simply by using his cultists to drag huge amounts of warpstone around and mass corrupting regions.
While I forgot to take pictures, here's a quick summary of a game I played this Tuesday against Bart's Daemons of Chaos.
Doombull with rerollable 1+ armor, 5+ ward, ASF sword
Level 4 Great Bray Shaman with 4+ Ward and Lore of Shadow
Wargor BSB with 4+ Ward Armor, Great Weapon
Level 1 Shaman with Lore of Beasts, Dispel Scroll
44 Gor with Banner
10 Gor with Banner
10 Ungor with Banner
10 Ungor with Banner
Five Ungor Raiders
Five Ungor Raiders
Five Minotaurs with Banner
24 Bestigor with Flaming Banner
Lord of Change that knew all of the Lore of Tzeentch
Level 2 Herald of Tzeentch that knew all of the Lore of Life, and was a BSB with a stubborn banner.
10 Horrors to bunker the BSB.
3 Bloodcrushers accompanied by a Herald of Khorne on a Juggernaught.
~30 Daemonettes with a Herald of Slaneesh
We played Battleline. The only terrain that came into play was a Wyrding Well in the middle of the board. I deployed my Ghorgon and Ungor block on the right, Razorgor and Raiders on the left, and left the Minos, big Gor block, and Bestigor in the middle. I left the small Gor unit and second units of Ungor and Raiders in Ambush. Bart deployed his Bloodletters and Daemonettes in the middle with his Flamers, and put the Bloodcrushers and Lord of Change on the flank opposite my Razorgor.
First Turn I got first turn, moved up aggressively, and then used Wyssan's Wildform to buff my Minotaurs so that they would be a less tempting target for shooting. Bart also moved forward but didn't charge, and then killed some of my Bestigor with shooting and magic.
Second Turn I charged the Flamers with Bestigor, the Bloodletters with Minotaur, and Daemonettes with Gors and the Ghorgon. Magic led to reduced weapon skill for the Bloodletters and reduced toughness for the Daemonettes, although my Level 4 miscast and became a Level 1. I won all three combats, almost wiping out the Daemonettes but not doing anything too terrible to the Bloodletters and Flamers. My razorgor moved up to block a future charge from the Bloodcrushers and keep them from assisting the Flamers for a turn. In the bottom of turn two, Bart killed the Razorgor and his Daemonettes were wiped out.
At this point, the Minotaurs wiped out the Bloodletters, and the Bestigor wiped out the Flamers. In addition, the Ghorgon and some ambushing Ungor raiders charged in and killed the Horrors and Daemon BSB. My minotaurs, except for the Doombull, were killed by the Lord of Change's magic. Bart's Bloodcrushers killed my BSB and Bestigors, but then overran into the solo Doombull, where they were punched hard in the face and died.
Fourth Turn My Ghorgon charged into the remaining Herald of Khorne, which was killed by the Doombull. Because of where the Lord of Change was positioned, the Ghorgon could have overrun into it on the roll of a seven, but unfortunately only overran five. At this point, we called the game as a massacre for the Beastmen.