Wednesday, 30 April 2014

The Month(s) at a Glace

Well, the regular updating is going pretty poorly at the moment isn't it?

Sorry about the lack of posts lately, what with my laptop going belly up, still getting used to my new one, new job that has me working long hours and causing me to be prone to randomly falling asleep plus lots of other various chores has left me with little energy to post.

So unfortunately this won't be a long post. The last couple of months have been kind of productive however, what with my March/April Another Army post objective done and my Deathwatch backgrounds written means I'm making good progress on most of my resolutions. I need one more story written and I've finished one completely and, technically I've done it but I won't officially announce that just yet...

But as we approach my birthday month, May, I realise that I need to crack on with my Ultramarines army list aim. As you can kind of see above I've begun the long process of basecoated another 20 Marines and I'm working on them bit by bit so the job doesn't become too tedious. More as that progresses.

Until next time, I'll try and plot some more posts for May and not leave you all hanging. Maybe even a battle report.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Apocalypse Now

This rather blurry picture marks my first ever game playing Apocalypse in 6th edition (the one last year only had super heavies and none of the other rules such as formations, finest hours etc.) and I have to admit it's a lot of fun. We only had one super heavy in the form of an Imperial Knight on the table but there was an absolutely insane amount of miniatures on the table. The set up was Blood Angels and Dark Angels against the forces of the World Eaters, Thousand Sons, Crimson Slaughter and Necrons. After a long fought battle that took about 12 hours just to get to turn 4, we called it a draw. Many things died and it was impossible to tell who did the most damage.

Okay well that's all I wanted to say for now, partially as proof that I can tick Dark Angels off my list of armies to fight but also to say that playing Apocalypse has really got me excited to get cracking with my army and create something awesome, it's a whole new ball game that I never knew existed until Friday! Eyes on this space!

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Another Army: Dave's Blood Angels

A rather fitting Another Army entry today comes from Dave whose Blood Angels made an appearance in my Table Top Nation post last year. Dave has been collecting his Blood Angels since before I even started and has built up more than just an apocalypse sized army, in fact I would say there are at least a few companies in the mix. I was hugely impressed with his army when I first saw it last year and Dave graciously accepted my invite to have his children of Sanguinius spotlighted on my humble blog.

Children of Blood

Like any good Blood Angel player, Dave has plenty of close combat death with which he can sink his metaphorical fangs in with. Although Dave admits that he spends less time painting his basic troopers that doesn't mean he hasn't built up some very nice troopers in the name of the Primarch. Even some of the numerous Assault Marines littered about his force have had lovingly hand painted assault cross placed on their jump packs, and some have even had some kit bashing done to them such as the odd standing (not jumping) Asartes here and there. I couldn't help but admire the thought that wen into these poses, from personal experience I have found Assault Marines notorious to get looking right but Dave looks to have accomplished such a feat and make it look simple. They look striking even when among the other infantry of the army.

Another kind of Assault Marines... Death Company

I was particularly interested that Dave, although having many Assault Troops as befitting of his Chapter has spent quite a considerable amount of time working on the non-slice and dice Marines too, already building up a fairly numerous amount of Devastators, a decent amount of Scouts and even some Pre-Heresy style Blood Angels.

Pre-Heresy style Marines

Blood Angel Scouts

Full 10 Man squad of Devastators...

Including their Sargent

Altogether Now

What kind of Space Marine army as big as this would be complete without a convention of the renown and particularly blood thirsty? Dave has taken a lot of time and care to make his named characters stand out among his troops, all with their own particular feel and themes. Astorath the Grim is the newest addition only being finished in the last year or so and didn't appear in my Table Top Nation post from last year. Sadly, as a trade off Dave didn't bring his Lemartes this time around but the sheer eye candy of Dante, Mephiston, Corbulo, Tycho and, of course, Astorath together should be enough to satisfy you all on the glorious detail to attention Dave has given them. 

And whilst we're on the subject of characters, the force also includes a healthy dose of Chaplains and a Librarian with honour guard based on Forgeworld's Sevrin Loth bundle.

Blood Angels Chaplain with Jump Pack

Blood Angels Librarian with Honour Guard

Tanks for the Memories

Being into the same army for so long, there are bound to be tanks in great numbers, and Dave's Blood Angels are no exception. Although I didn't see much in the way of drop pods, there were tanks of all different kinds. From before I know there is at least another Vindicator in the mix but the one he brought for this article can be seen on the left. There are other non-standard variants of different tanks in the army as well, including an Executioner Predator. Dave admits he paints his tanks differently depending on the model and, when asked if the difference in looks bothered him he responded "No. Each tank has been around for a different amount of time, the paint is sure to wear thin on a few. Some would be darker than others." Fair enough, I wish my OCD allowed me to look at my own armies the same way!

Here is some armoured eye candy.

Various Vehicle Variants

Venerable and Death Company Dreadnoughts

So, what now?

Although Dave never spoke about what his future plans for his Blood Angels are, the army itself is self evident. To my mind it looks like a fully painted, high pointed army and that gives Dave full reign of painting whatever he feels like, whenever he feels like it.

He has, however stated on numerous occasions that he is working on some Imperial Guard (sorry, "Astra Militarum") allies for his force but I have yet to see these models in person. He has also, as a member of my hobby group put together and painted some Pit Vipers, the chapter that has become our group's official Chapter. I am as yet unsure as to what Chapter Tactics he is using for these guys, but I'm sure you'll all agree they look great and make a nice contrast to Dave's beloved Blood Angels. Putting this squad together wasn't enough, however and Dave felt he needed that one squad to bridge the gap. He settled on the same idea as I had and added in some Deathwatch for the fun of it. I'd like to mention at this point that Dave is privy to my half-joking dislike of Blood Angels but massive love of Ultramarines (it's become the center of friendly banter between us) and was quick to point out that his Deathwatch sargent was a boy in blue. I like his style.

Ultramarine Sargent
More Deathwatch

Even more Deathwatch
Well that about wraps up this edition of Another Army, stay tuned for May/June's offering where we will be keeping with the Imperium and looking at some of Rogal's boys, but before I go, is this a Limited Edition ally I see before me?

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Saturday, 5 April 2014

Kill Team - The Backgrounds

As some of you know part of my New Years Resolution is to write, build and play a game with my very own Deathwatch Kill Team. After much thought and writing today I unveil the backgrounds for each individual member of the Kill Team as well as the squad's overlaying story.

Scourge of Hades

Though once a disorderly group with vastly differing opinions, the unnamed Kill Team referred only as "The Scourge of Hades" have become akin to Imperial guns for hire, often appearing in the most bizarre of places to aid the Imperium in their darkest hour against the Xenos filth that infects the galaxy.

The squad became a unified force after their assignment to Mandragor IV where they had been ordered to help defend the Imperial World against Hive Fleet Hades, a Hive Fleet that had unbeknownst to them been tainted by the Chaos God Nurgle and had used their Genestealer Cults to infiltrate the political circle of the planet's governing body. 3 members of the Kill Team were killed in the ensuing battle, picked off by putrid Lictors and Genestealers whilst the rest followed the Hive Ships into a Warp Storm where they were officially reported as MIA.

Now, many years after their supposed deaths the Scourge of Hades have returned from the Warp only to find time has passed far quicker in the materium than their time in the Immaterium, but that time has made them become one of the most disciplined and unified units to ever serve the Deathwatch, their brotherhood fastened and their experience unquestionable.

Falkner Reeves

Although the newest member to join the Scourge of Hades, Falkner found his feet quickly and was instrumental in unifying the originally bickering squad into a tight knight Kill Team. Originally hailing from the staunch Crimson Fists Chapter, Falkner was unanimously voted by his peers to replace Octavius Varti as Squad Leader, a decision that Octavius himself graciously accepted understanding that Falkner's leadership was vital in improving the effectiveness of the Squad as a whole. Falkner is generally sympathetic of his Brothers plights, respectful of their individual experience and skills and second only to Octavius in terms tactical genius. As Squad Leader he has lead the Scourge of Hades to victory on no less than 20 skirmishes in the Warp alone and has worked alongside legendary figures such as Marneus Calgar, Chief Librarian Tigurius, Brother Tycho and Ragnar Blackmane.

Octavius Varti

Hailing from the noble Ultramarines Chapter, Octavius was one of the First Company sergeants that survived the massacre that was the First Tyrannic War. Such was his skill and experience in counter Tyranid tactics that he became an obvious choice to join the ranks of the Deathwatch. It was Octavius that originally lead the Kill Team during their assignment to Mandragor IV and, whilst his leadership was able to keep the Nurgle infected Hive Fleet Hades at bay for a time, his inability to unify his squad saw him demoted in favour of Falkner Reeves. Regardless, Falkner highly respects Octavius's knowledge in all theatres of battle and he still acts as second in command in times where Falkner himself is unable to fulfill this role.

Hogar Irontooth

Hogar, originally of the Space Wolves Chapter, was selected to join the Deathwatch for his indomitable and ferocious demeanor in battle and quickly formed a fast friendship with Falkner, the two often sharing stories of battles against the Greenskins in past campaigns. Unfortunately his pride and brash nature saw him develop a vicious rivalry with the Dark Angel Gaius Marr, so much that the rivalry threatened to tear the Kill Team in two amidst war. This rivalry has since been resolved and, since Mandragor IV Hogar and Gaius have become the closest of brothers, their rivalry turning from bitter hatred of each others Chapters and traditions to that of friendly competition, both often wagering who would kill the most enemies in each skirmish and battle.

Gaius Marr

Quiet and brooding, Gaius is a brother of the Dark Angels Chapter, often going into battle with his trusted Combi-Plasma as befits a member of his Chapter. During a prior to Mandragor IV Gaius rarely spoke unless he felt he had something worth saying or when his choler was up, which was often where Hogar was involved. The bitter rivalry between them almost resulted in a divide within the squad but, thanks to Falkner's intervention, Gaius has since learnt to respect his new Squad Leader and his comrade Hogar as honourable warriors in their own right. Such was the turning point that he became close friends with his Ex-Space Wolves rival and instead uses the tension that used to exist between them as a way to improve his skills in battle.

Borreas Troyan

Deemed particularly lucky by the standards of his Chapter, Borreas of the Lamenters originally joined the Deathwatch along with his brother Ignis after they were seperated from their Chapter following the Badab War. During the assault of Mandragor IV, Borreas along with Ignis and 2 other members of the Kill Team were seperated and attacked by a pack of Lictors, an assault that Borreas alone survived. Disheartened by the death of his brother particularly, it took Falkner's leadership to get him back to fighting mentality. Though he often goes into battle with battered and broken armour, a memento of the damage caused at the Scourge of Hades most notable assignment he carries a meticulously maintained Combi-Grav that once belonged to his late brother, Ignis.

Davin Averus

Tried and tested to full Astartes rank in the traditions of the Exorcists Chapter, Davin is a staunch ally and invaluable resource to the Scourge of Hades when fighting against the forces of Chaos. It was his insight combined with Octavius's experience that helped drive away Hive Fleet Hades from Mandragor IV and it was Davin's incorruptible nature that allowed the Kill Team to survive the perils of the Warp when marooned there. Some argue that it is Davin that is rightful, if not official leader of the Scourge of Hades for the spiritual faith he instils amongst his adopted Battle Brothers, often taking the role of a Chaplain where no real Chaplain is available.

Irrius Carmine

Irrius hails from Clan Agkistrodon of the Pit Vipers Chapter, a clan famed for it's gene mutation that causes the skin to callous easier which, when combined with the Astartes biochemistry turns them as hard as iron. Irrius was a champion in the Iron Pits of his clan whose win ratio is second only to his Clan Master Sparitan Crowl. As such he excels at basic weapon mastery, a boast that was not found wanting amongst his Kill Team Battle Brothers after he held his own against waves of putrid Hormagaunts at Mandragor IV, though his recklessness and tendency to prove his own independent worth in combat often leaves Falkner to assign him solo jobs more so than any other member of the squad.

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Friday, 4 April 2014

The Final Stretch...

Hi all, I am literally just posting to say this blog is on the road to recovery. I have purchased a brand new laptop but I'm a long way away from getting it up to scratch. Just bare with me a little longer whilst I get all my files, updates etc. sorted out and then I promise more than enough posts to make up the gap.

So just to whet your appetite, here are a few things I shall be posting when I'm finally back:

  • March/April's Another Army showcase.
  • Deathwatch project backgrounds.
  • Quite a few updates on my Ultramarine army's progression.
  • A product review of some interesting heads.
  • Possibly some tutorials on basing.
  • Highly possibly some ebay links to stuff I'm selling.

Yep that's pretty much it for now. My laptop died at the most inconvenient time, but I shall be back with vengence! Hoo-Rah!