Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Minis for My Girl

Two weekends ago was an anniversary with my girlfriend and, her being awesome and all, I had to make her something. My gift, continuing a theme from last year, was making her some Dr Who miniatures, this time the 11th doctor (Matt Smith) and his companion Amy Pond.

And the complete group for full measure. You can find close ups of Mr. Tennant and the Master by clicking here. All of the miniatures (except for the TARDIS) come from Heresy Miniatures, a real quality independent miniatures maker.

So, when special days for your loved ones come calling, have you brought your hobby skills to bear? I'm interested to hear how!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Ogre Circus: T-Giving Weekend Work

Even though I traveled up to the wilds of Superior, WI I was still able to get quite a bit of hobby work done over the weekend. Mostly it was painting these fools:

Friday, November 26, 2010

BATTLE REPORT: 1850 Tourney Prep vs Space Wolves

Another video battle report for you all. This was another battle down at the Last Square in Madison against a fellow looking for some tourney prep with his Space Wolves. Be sure to watch the after battle report for my critique on the mission.

And apologies to you text battle report lovers- no time for it this week. Have a good holiday weekend!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Tanksgiving!

Since right now I'm hopefully arriving in Duluth, MN (weather permitting!) all I have time for is a Happy Tanksgiving to all of you in this US of A.

To my international subscribers (and domestic, but really, eat some turkey instead of reading a blog why dontcha!), what about our hobby are you tankful for this day?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tournament: Merry Mayhem Prep

First, thanks are needed to both Loquacious and Brent for getting me on the HoP Top X once again! My Internet fame continues to grow... and this also probably means that I should, like, alphabetize/reorder the IG Terminology link THAT IS RIGHT ABOVE THIS POST! How cool is that?

Anyway, I digress.

As I must have mentioned previously the reason for all of the Ogre Circus craziness is to prep for a tournament going down here in Madison called Merry Mayhem. As far as I understand this tourney goes a bit more on the "silly" side, partially because its a charity tournament and partially because it's all Christmas themed.

Some examples of the holiday silliness:
  • the missions. The ones that I have heard have such interesting titles as The Grinch (break into  different buildings and grab "presents"), the Isle of Misfit Toys (run around chasing the toys) and The Perfect Tree (whoever has more models within 12" of the Perfect Tree wins [Ogres and monsters count as 3])
  • get a free reroll for donating a toy
  • get prizes for having your wizard sucked into the warp the first, be the first to roll insane courage, etc.
So I finally got some actual practice this past Sunday... and was stomped. Not because I played poorly, but because I neglected to have any unit champions in my list which was apparently the only way to grab misfit toys. I smashed a lot of stuff but just couldn't get any points.

Fortunately  the missions are now posted so I can determine victory conditions (which often involve champs collecting tokens) so I can retool my army list, but MAN was that disturbing.

Changing my list to accomodate this development has also had the pleasant side effect of making my hobby related tasks easier to do. I'm probably going to cut the Scrappies because a) to look upon the Scraplauncher set is to look into the face of FEAR ITSELF and b) they just don't help very much with my objectives. It's not so much about smashing (except for the Perfect Tree) and more about grabbing.

So, with that in mind, here's a sketchy version of my revised list that I was helped with thanks to a kind poster on the Ogre Stronghold:



6 Bulls, Champ, Bellower
3 Bulls, Champ, Bellower
3 Bulls, Champ, Bellower
6 Irongunts, Standard, Bellower
11+ Gnoblar Trappers, Champ

4 Leadbelchers, Champ, Bellower

2 Gorgers

Game plan is have the Ironguts and possibly the large Bull squad play defense, smashing into the enemy so they can't grab tokens. Meanwhile the other Bulls, the Trappers and the Leadbelchers will run around grabbing tokens wherever they can. The Gorgers come on late to either take out warmachines or delay squads from grabbing tokens.

It's probably the characters that I'm having the most trouble with. Definitely need to include Tyrant and BSB but I'm debating replacing the Slaughtermaster with two Butchers. I'm not sure if I'd even have the points to do it, but it would add a bit of flexibility to my magic phase, enabling me to deal with two far flung groups at once.

Finally, we have the To Do list for hobby, which includes:
Finish painting Gorger 1 and BSB
Paint Gorger 2
Clean and paint the Trappers
Convert, clean and paint the Leadbelchers
Create movement trays
Create a display board

I think this is doable with some work over the weekend.. either way, wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Ogre Circus: Gorgers and Bruiser

Over the weekend I managed to convert up my BSB and a pair of Gorgers.
As you can see I have followed your demands and included the Ogre Champion as my BSB. I'm still undecided about adding some more circusy elements to him (HINT: POLL ON RIGHT). The banner is from the Minotaur kit, and I decided to fill it out a bit more with green stuff.

There were a ton of thick sprue lines on this fellow, as well as a few gaps that I had to fill with green stuff. Still, with the pin the banner seems to be staying in place fairly well.

As you can tell I rethought how I was going to do the Gorgers. Instead of Strongmen I went with the suggestion of feral beasts, locked up in cages and on display. Their bases will have broken cage elements strewn about. They are created from a mix of Minotaur body and arms and Giant head and hands.

I tried to evoke more of the feel of the traditional Gorger by sticking various horn and bone pieces on them and evoke skin stretched around them with greenstuff.

Hope you enjoyed these- there's lots more hobby work to do over the next couple of weeks, so I gotta git er done!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Ogre Circus: Ringmasta Burnam, Dressed to Kill

 Da Ringmasta Burnam of da BIGGEST SHOW on EARTH  is ready ta GET DA SHOW ON DA ROAD!
 Yes, that's right ladies and gentlemen, Ringmasta Burnam is all painted up and ready to whip some Thinlings' pants off. For my first major greenstuffing project I think he turned out pretty well, and any odd inconsistencies in his clothing I'll just put down to shoddy Ogre craftsmanship. Stupid Ogres, learn ta sew why dontcha?
 Originally his coat was just Blood Red but my girlfriend convinced me that adding a gloss shine would really help it stand out. I think it does the job well, making it seem like polished leather... though the idea of it creaking when Burnam moves around is now in my head. Euugghh...

Also, I like stripey pants, and Burnam seemed to be a good place to have some.
And, as always, since I am a magnet fiend both of his hands are removable. I don't have any replacements made up quite yet, but in the future if I want to switch him over to having a shield/ironfist and/or a great weapon I can do it.

Thanks for reading, and see you all tomorrow.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

BATTLE REPORT: 1850 Nid Annihilation

So, since I skipped posting on Thursday all of you lucky, beautiful Internet people get a special Saturday post of Humanity Defending goodness! Today I have a battle report for you all available in both video and text forms (after the jump) detailing one of the first games that I had at my new club here in Madison, WI. Hope you enjoy!

p.s. don't forget to vote on my Ogre Champion poll on the right!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Poll: Battle Masters Ogre Champion?

 I was going through my games before moving out to Madison this summer and came across this board game in my family's collection. I remembered playing it a lot as a kid, but only when I looked at it again this summer did I realize that it was a Games-Workshop product.

Happy at my new rediscovery, I decided to bring the game along with me to possibly use the figures in the Ogre army... thanks to this guy:

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Imperial Guard Terminology

've realized that a lot of the slang that is being thrown around can be confusing to new players. So, as an Imp Guard player I decided to wrack my brain for all of the wonderful slang and acronyms that apply to His Imperial Majesty's Most Glorious Imperial Guard, as well as some universal nomenclature that the Imperial Guard has access to. Here's what I've got- feel free to let me know if I missed something!

Weapons and upgrade acronyms:

AC- Autocannon

BP- Bolt Pistol

EA- Extra Armor

HB- Heavy Bolter

HF- Heavy Flamer

HK- Hunter-Killer Missile

LC- Lascannon

ML- either Multilaser or Missile Launcher

MM- MultiMelta

MRP- Multiple Rocket Pod [weapon option for a Valkyrie]

PC- plasma cannon

PS/PF- Power Sword/Power Fist

TWL or TL- TWin Linked

Vox/VC- vox caster [allows a unit a better chance to obey an order]

Unit acronyms:

AS- armoured sentinel [closed top AT-ST]

CCS- company command squad [HQ, with BS 4] 

HH/DD/BW- Hell Hound/Devil Dog/BaneWolf [fast flame/melta/poison tanks]

HWS- heavy weapon squad

IS- infantry squad [the ones with BS 3]

LR- Leman Russ [the big tanks]

LRBT- LR Battle Tank [the one with the Battle Cannon]

MoF- Master of the Fleet [upgrade to the CCS that hampers enemy reserves] 

MoO- Master of Ordnance [upgrade to the CCS that allows very inaccurate ordnance blasts to appear on the battle field] 

PBS- psyker battle squad [can lower your leadership or blast your squad] 

PCS- platoon command squad [comes with the IS]

PP- either plasma pistol or Psyker Primaris [can shoot force lightning

ST- Storm Trooper 

SS- scout sentinel [open top AT-ST]

SWS- special weapon squad 

V- is for Vendetta normally, occasionally Valkyrie [the big planes] 

Orders: a unique feature of the IG that allows commanders to grant special abilities to nearby infantry 

FRFSRF- First Rank Fire! Second Rank Fire! An order that allows all Lasguns from the ordered squad to fire an additional shot. 

BID- Bring It Down! An order that allows an ordered squad to twin link its weapons vs. a Monstrous Creature or vehicle 

FoMT- Fire on My Target! An order that forces the target of the ordered squad to reroll any successful cover saves 

Factions: the various model groups that you can play with using the Imperial Guard codex

Cadians- the most common IG models. Look vaguely like modern day soldiers and are reputed to be among the best Guardsmen in the galaxy.

Catachans- extras from the movie Predator. Big muscly men literally wearing t-shirts as armor. Come from a Deathworld where only the strong survive.

Tallarn- extras from Lawrence of Arabia. Desert fighters that love their tanks and outflanking.

Mordians- the guys marching around in dress uniform. Stern, uncompromising, and surprisingly effective.

Praetorians- extras from Zulu! Plenty of pith helmets and colonial British flair.

Death Korps of Krieg- skull masks, prussian helmets and general World War I attire. Love their ceaseless trench warfare.

Armageddon Steel Legion- gas masks and trench coats, heavily focused on mechanized and anti-Ork warfare.

Elysians/Harakoni Warhawks- actually have their own armylist in Imperial Armour VIII but can be played using the normal Codex as well. Futuristic drop troopers who love aerial combat.

Renegades/Blood Pact/Vraks- Chaos inspired guardsmen; just add spikes!

Tanith First and Only- stealthy badass snipers and scouts. The pinnacle of light infantry tactics.

Vostroyan First Born- heavily armored elite Guardsmen with heirloom weaponry and gear. Have quite a bit of Imperial Russian and bionic flair.

Valhallan Ice Warriors- more great coats and Russian stylings with a Soviet accent.

Epithets hurled at the Imperial Guard:
PINK SKINS!- by the Orks. See also: Humies!

Mon'Keigh- by the Eldar

Biomass- by the Tyranids

The Harvest- by the Necrons

The Weak- by the Chaos Marines

The Emperor's Sledgehammer- by the Imperium

Cheese- by those facing the Guard on the field of battle

General Terminology: 

Infantry Platoon- a rather unique feature of the Guard, it allows them to place multiple squads within one Force Org. slot. Includes 1 PCS, 2-5 IS, 0-5 HWS and 0-2 SWS. All are rolled for reserves as a single entity. 

Blob squad- Infantry squads can be combined together into one super unit at deployment that can't be broken up. Enables 50 man units filled with special and heavy weapons as well as the inevitable power weapon wielding Commissar to keep them in line. 

Bubble wrap- the practice of wrapping infantry units (usually a blob squad for the Guard) around the tanks to protect them from meltaguns, deep strikers, assault, etc. Can also be used to protect infantry and provide them cover though not as often.

Melta vets- squad of Veterans [the BS 4 ones] packing three meltaguns. Note that this name can be changed to cover whatever special weapon that they are spamming, i.e. plasma vets. 

Mech IG- an Imperial Guard army comprised mostly or entire of mechanized elements. There is a great degree of variety within this categorization for different army types. Basically consists of a lot of transports (mostly Chimeras with a few Valks/Vendettas) occasionally backed up by heavy support firepower. 

MechVets- The most common variant of Mech IG focuses almost solely on Vendettas and melta vets riding in Chimeras or Vendettas, often maxing out each choice. 

Leafblower- an overused term denoting a Mech IG variant that has enough firepower to "blow" opponents off the table, normally with ordnance templates. Generally characterized by Manticores and/or Medusas in the heavy support section though other heavy damage dealers such as the Hydra, Colossus and Leman Russ can also apply. This type of army generally relies heavily on getting at least one turn to unleash hell and often turns to Inquisitorial allies to do so thanks to the Emperor's Tarot. The allies also often allow Mystic fun, granting nearby units the chance to blow away any foolish enemies that deep strike near you. 

Horde IG- a mostly or entirely foot based list focusing on quantity rather than quality. Expect lots of fully decked out infantry platoons and lots of use of orders. 

Mixed Mech- combines the best part Mech IG with Horde IG. The most general elements are a platoon or two paired with some faster mechanized elements with pretty much anything under the Emperor's sun as back up. Blob squads are used to bubble wrap the tanks, protecting them from enemy meltaguns and possibly providing them cover. As the saying goes, "The Tanks kill the Infantry and the Infantry kill the Tanks."

Air Cav- what happens when you try to play 6-9 Valks/Vendettas in a single list. Much more effective using the Elysians army list but can be done with standard IG.

Treadhead- IG player who loves his tanks

CREEEEEEEEEEED!!!!- common cry when something unexpected happens to the enemy. Comes from Usarkar Creed's ability to grant any unit Scout before deployment. 

Marboed- verb meaning a crazy Vietnam reject just appeared out of no where and chucked a Demo Charge at your stuff. Example: "I was doing pretty well until my Terminators were Marboed." "So then he was about to assault my stuff but I Marboed his Warriors- take that Hive Mind!" 

GG- what smiling IG players say when you've finished packing up your models :) 

If there's anything that you feel I got wrong or should add let me know and I'll do it. Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Hobby: A Look Forward

Today's going to be a bit of a look forward at some of the projects and other hobby related activities that I'm going to be working on in the next month or so. With plenty of big gift-giving opportunities on the horizon I figured that a few painted models might be just the ticket to both save me some money and give people something hand made.

But that's for December- right now there's the Ogre Circus, which needs to be completed up to 2k points by December 4th for Merry Mayhem here in Madison, which is a charity Fantasy tournament. Right now I'd say that I'm just a bit over halfway to that goal, with a few big pieces (Tyrant, Bruiser, two Scraplaunchers, two Gorgers) and a mess of Gnoblars still to go. This will be... interesting to get finished with Thanksgiving taking out 4 days to spend with the girl's family up in Duluth and some big events going on this weekend... leaving me with 11 evenings to try to get the work done. This is made even more interesting thanks to my Scraplauncher that I ordered two weeks ago still not in appearance and my need to convert something for my second. And of course three of those evenings may be lost due to 40k. And I might need to sacrifice the majority of a couple Sundays to actually, y'know, learn to use the army. And Magic is on every other Tuesday. Hrrm. Something has to give.

Fortunately I've gotten to know the organizer of Merry Mayhem and he may be able to arrange for some Scraplaunchers to make their way to me if necessary. They won't be Circus themed but they'll do the job. But still... mayhaps I need to spend less time reading Imperial Armour (IX was SOOO good!) and more time doing hobby work.

Having said that, and in an effort to really get my rear in gear with regards to my projects here's a checklist of everything I need to get done as well as tentative due dates:
  1. Complete Project Paired Pentagon (coming soon!)
  2. Finish painting Tyrant (by Thursday)
  3. Re-model Bruiser (Thursday)
  4. Re-model Gorgers (Saturday)
  5. Prime and base coat Bruiser (Saturday)
  6. Prime and base coat Gorgers (Sunday)
  7. Finish painting Bruiser and Gorgers (Monday next week)
  8. Clean Gnoblar sprues (Thanksgiving weekend- what joy!)
  9. Prime and basecoat Gnoblars (11/29)
  10. Finish painting Gnoblars (11/30)
  11. Assemble Scraplauncher #1 (11/30)
  12. Assemble Scraplauncher #2 (12/2)
  13. Prime and basecoat Scraplaunchers (12/3)
  14. At some point base the army and get some movement trays... ?
And if needed, a few 40k nights can be thrown away to prep. Phew. This month is going to be busy- wish me luck!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Ogre Circus: More clowns!

That's right- I finally found some time to whip up six more fat, jolly clowns for the Circus!

 Jester (on the left) and Jangles (on the right) are probably my favorites from the new batch, though Pierre's (center) smirk is certainly not without merit.

 Osman (on the left) is certainly intimidating with his freakishly huge hand while Gonzo (center) just likes giving people the finger. Ronald (on the right) just likes his Happy Meals.

 How many Ogres can you fit into a clown car? Probably not that many...
 And finally, the circus so far.
Hope you've enjoyed the pics!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Dark Eldar: Thinking about an army

As mentioned previously I picked up my copy of the Dark Eldar codex over the past weekend and have been greedily devouring it cover to cover like a starving jackal looking for marrow. A couple of list ideas have been flying around my head as well as cool hobbytastic ways that I could implement them. Since right now I'm forcing myself to think before leaping out and purchasing some models, I though that I'd talk a bit about some of them.

1. Jetbikes!

Like it says, jetbikes! The Reavers look incredibly awesome and offer anti-infantry and anti-tank all in one sleek package. Turboboosting to snipe some Long Fangs, then slowing down to pop a Land Raider... they just sound awesome. I'm a bit concerned with how fragile they are, but hopefully use of Blasters plus the Eldar jetbike move will keep them safe from small arms fire while tank popping and turboboosting to good locations should cover the rest. I'd probably fill out the rest of this list with Hellion troops and possibly a Ravager or three, giving me a good mix of anti-infantry and anti-tank.

Cool modelling idea: Ghost rider themed. Replace any open helmets with flaming skulls, give the Reavers flaming chains and have the Hellions either riding their standard boards or mod them to look more like Screamers of Tzeentch. Bonus points for making it compatible with the Chaos Daemons codex.

Alternatively I could just go with the standard models and take it as a painting skills builder, and probably throw in some mechanized support to go with it.

2. Dark Tyranids

Again with the multiple codices! This idea has some serious inspiration from Musing of a Metal Mind's Tyracrons (which you should totally check out!) Idea would be that some Haemonculi have captured some Tyranid specimens and are now loaning out their reprogrammed weapon-beasts to the highest bidder. Would probably be a Webway Portal army with Beastmasters, Talos and Chronos Parasites coming out to devour people. Throw in an Archon's Kabal mates as the shooty element/troops/webway portal deployers and you've got it. There's also an image in my head of a Tyranid Harpy as one of the Dark Eldar jetfighters that won't let go... And of course the icing on the cake would be being able to use it as a Tyranid codex army as well.

Cool modelling idea: pretty obvious, take Tyranid beasties and convert them into Haemonculus monsters. Probably throw some Nid bits onto Wracks to show off some experimentation. This would probably take a TON of modelling time, though, which I might not be able to do. I love me some crazy modeling projects, but since even my Ogres are taking tons of time to come to fruition I just dunno if I have it in me to do this admittedly AWESOME sounding project.

3. Standard Dark Eldar Raiding Party

Hey, the kits are already ridiculously pretty... why bother changing them? It would definitely offer me the fast, assault based army that I've always wanted to try and nothing is scarier than literal boat loads of Wyches in your face while Warriors and Trueborn smash you to pieces from range. I could probably also get to use Incubi here, which would mean some of the most badass models in the game would be MINE.

Cool modelling idea: this would probably be more as a painting skills builder army... which admittedly I would like to have. My painting techniques are ok, but I'd like to improve and working on challenging models would probably help me do that.


So those are my potential ideas. I could probably combine numbers 2 and 3 together to some extent, which would let me practice my painting skills AND have a usable army while I work on my Tyranid beasties. But, I'll wait a bit first- still have to actually build my last 1000 points of Ogres, not to mention get started on some Christmas modelling projects...

What kind of ideas (crazy or not) do YOU have for a Dark Eldar army?

*images above are from Games-Workshop (except for the Tyracrons, which are from Musing of a Metal Mind but inspired by Games-Workshop)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

AFTERTHOUGHT: Bringing a Gun to a Knife Fight

I'll be trying to do these afterthought segments after any battle reports that I run, both to help me learn from any mistakes I made as well as provide some feedback on the battle. For this afterthought you can turn to this battle report for reference. Also for reference, the battle map:

I believe overall that my tactics were sound for this mission. I'm not used to so much LOS blocking terrain which really screwed with my firing lanes. I basically had a choice of  where to concentrate my fire, either directly in front of my objective or the rest of the field.

Fortunately for me my opponent obliged me in these matters as with the amount of deployment room that I required he really had nowhere to run. The long range shooters took the wide open battle field while my shorter ranged mechanized infantry chose to defend the objective with help from its limited sight lines.

I believe this battle would have gone very differently if my opponent had simply chosen to rush my objective. Two land raiders filled with Berzerkers would have easily sliced through the combined squad as well as pretty much anything else that they wanted, as the Executioner wouldn't have been able to lend its firepower terribly readily to a massed assault on my right flank. Since he came at me piecemeal and advanced all along the right half of the table I was able to deal with each part with the necessary tools one at a time. Keeping the rhino back at his objective would also have been a decent idea, as with the LOS blocking building I wouldn't have been able to hit him without some drastic repositioning of my units. Still, I can understand the wish to come to grips with my boys as quickly as possible.

MVPs for the match were definitely the meltavets and the Executioner. While my Hearts vet squad failed miserably the Diamond squad more than made up for their shortcomings, adding two land raiders and a Rhino to their kill tally. The Executioner, on the other hand, cleared out heavy infantry like no other, almost single handedly eliminating two Berzerker squads.

Still, even with their stellar records there are parts of them about which I am unsure. The meltavets both had autocannons as part of their wargear, which I'm not certain was necessary. They were mostly added to grant the squad some duality to their tank-hunting career, but I'm not sure how often I'll be holding them still. With the Executioner I've debated taking off their PC sponsons. While undeniably effective I can't help but wonder if I could spend the 40 points better elsewhere.

The other three elements that I have concerns about are the Heavy Weapon Squad, the Platoon Command Squad and the LRBT. The HWS just doesn't seem to do enough for me, rarely doing much damage against the light transports it's supposed to be king against and being rather fragile to boot. The PCS I've never been able to figure out- perhaps equipping it with meltaguns as a psuedo-meltavet would be the best option, as I have anti-horde all over the place already. Finally the LRBT just never seems to hold up its weight. I love large pie plates, and when it hits its magic, but he is still taking up quite a bit of room for his points. Strangely I think adding a second LRBT to its squadron would fix the problem, as at least one of those pie plates has to hit every time, right?

Finally, there's the matter of the combined platoon. AC/GL doesn't seem to be doing enough against Marine armies so I'm debating upgrading to AC/Meltagun to give it some low AP weaponry as well as an anti-Land Raider out.

But, overall I'm happy with the list and I'll probably run it a few more times before making any serious changes. Thanks for reading, and I'll see you all tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

BATTLE REPORT: Bringing a Gun to a Knife Fight

I finally got a full sized game of 40k in last night down at the Last Square in Madison. My opponent, Brian, was geared up for a 2k battle but I unfortunately just did not have the models to get up to that points range. Fortunately he was very understanding and edited his list to be 1850.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Dark Eldar Fluff Highlights

I picked up my copy of the DE codex over the weekend but only sat down to read it last night. I know that lots of people have already written indepth tactical analyses of the book so I won't be doing that. What I HAVEN'T been hearing so much about is the new fluff found in the book which... y'know... actually gives us Dark Eldar fluff, an unprecedented feat.

So here are some of the highlights that I've found in the book so far:

  • The Dark Eldar, and particularly the Haemonculi, treat death as a past time. If you're rich enough you can get completely regrown from even a single hand, and Haemonculi are apparently effectively immortal.
  • Asdrubael Vect's favorite weapon: Imperial Cruiser. No, seriously- he's used one to annihilate an entire section of Commoragh that was in rebellion via warp core breach and manipulated at least a dozen Astartes strike cruisers to mount an attack on Commoragh, often using their ships as battering rams.
  • Asdrubael Vect's second favorite weapon: black hole.
  • Lady Malys' favorite weapon: an Ork Waagh!
  • Duke Sliscus' favorite ride: your flagship
  • It is whispered that Incubi can even be trusted to keep their word.
  • Fabius Bile learned his arts from the Haemonculi
  • Two Dark Eldar cabals once allied with Iyanden to fight off an Ork Waagh! post-Tyranid invasion. When asked why they did it they said that the Eldar's angsty necromancy made them smile.
  • After a Haemonculi coven invades an Imperial world the remaining citizenry begin worshipping them after they leave, even fighting against the Imperial rescue fleet because they fear the fleshmongers more than Imperial retribution.
My favorite bit of fluff though, like in the Tyranid book, deals with the Tau. The little blue buggers seem to be getting the lion's share of important new fluff in the latests crop of codexes, which makes sense given their dynamic nature. Hopefully it will lead to a lot more cool models and units when their book finally comes out... Anyway, this piece picks up right after Hive Fleet Gorgon's invasion but the Tau are still surrounded by another Hive Fleet. So, being the Tau, they start drawing increasingly more vicious bounty hunters, mercenaries and aliens into their forces to fight off the invading bugs. One warlord they hire is an alien calling himself Urien Rakarth. Hilarity ensues as the price that he asks is simply a "cultural exchange" of 77 Tau of each caste in addition to 7 Ethereals so that their cultures can learn more about one another. You can guess what happens next...

There's a lot more good fluff in the book, but those were what really stuck out to me. What is your favorite piece of background for the True Kin?

*Image from Games-Workshop

Monday, November 8, 2010

40k Thought: Getting Back Into the Game

So as my posts might suggest I haven't been playing a lot of 40k recently. Pretty much my only game in the last three or four months was at a tourney where I unsurprisingly performed miserably. Work, plus the Ogres, have been taking up a lot of my time.

It's just difficult getting back into the game after a break, especially if you move to a new place like I did. I was no longer sure about what was expected on the table top, tried to make lists that wouldn't fold but weren't crazy competitive, and tried to make sure that I was up on the rules so that I wouldn't make mistakes. Plus there's the modeling, as I'd hate to show up to a new club with non-table top ready models. I hope I'm not the only one who dreads actually starting that next project, especially when you already have several others in the works. And even then actually finding a place to game can be a challenge- the first place I tried had NO 40k players on their scheduled Warhammer nights two weeks in a row, after which I stopped trying.

Fortunately I got wind of a game store called The Last Square that's near to my work and decided to head down there last Wednesday for a game. By the time I got there there were already six games going on and a demo game was being set up. Since there wasn't anyone else open to play with I volunteered for the demo game and quickly drew up a 500 pt list. My opponent, who goes on the Madison 40k forums as DarkAngel, was an older gentleman who hadn't played in some time. To give you a frame of reference, he referenced his newly bought copy of the Dark Angels codex as "the new DA codex."

Still, he had done his homework and had a very nicely painted 500-ish pt force of all metal Dark Angels (including the commander pictured above!). We decided to let a few things slide, such as allowing his scouts to be troops, and then we rolled up 4 objectives Dawn of War and got to it.

Turns out it was one of the most fun games of 40k that I've ever played. I've always loved teaching people things- in fact for the last two years that's about all that I did for work. And if I get to teach something fun like 40k? Awesome. We joked around, I explained the new parts of 5th edition to him when they came up, either as suggestions to him or reference for why I was doing a particular action, and all around had a blast.

The game wasn't about winning or losing though no punches were pulled, and plenty of cinematic moments occurred (such as the lone sergeant angrily cutting down outflanking Scouts turn after turn as his squad died around him or the DA captain bravely charging alone up the field to slaughter my infantry) that we had lots of fun describing. And really, that's what made the game so fun for me- not playing worried about winning but just kicking back and throwing some dice on a table with a similarly minded gent.

So what did I learn from this? That getting back in is only as hard as you make it. I was worried about making mistakes and stepping on people's toes in a new club, but it turns out that there are plenty of great people out there who enjoy our strange little hobby, and a whole lot of them are nice to boot. Also that I'm no longer the n00b- I have fairly well painted minis and a pretty firm grasp of the rules and tactics, and people seem to respect that. And of course that no matter how long you've been out there's always someone else who is either just starting the game or coming back after a much longer break. But even if you are ridiculously out of shape, not to worry- there's plenty of helpful people out there to give you a hand.

This next week I hope to get a larger game in and continue to refine my army, but I'm glad I had that demo game last week as it was exactly what I needed. So thanks DarkAngel, and I hope to play you again some time.