Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Yet more rats

I think I've developed a bit of a Skaven addiction.

This is the third horde I have refurbished for Thomas and fg - I buy half-painted units off ebay, make up enough for a horde, touch them up, make a unit filler if required, and a custom movement tray, and we have a horde ready for the table.

These 35 figures came more completely painted than the few lots I used for the other two hordes, so all I needed to do was to paint the eyes and dot the catch-light on them, paint the faces, and do a bit of touch up of the blue and silver, then wash the whole lot. The flocking was simple but effective, so I kept it original and flocked and painted the movement tray to match.

Closer view showing the command figures. I like the way the previous owner did the standard.
For the unit filler I once again used a 60mm x 40mm MDF base and the bits from my Tehnolog Castlecraft kit. This time I wanted to depict the skavens coming out of a sewer outlet. The Castlecrat parts fit just nicely on a 40mm square base which I then glued to the MDF base, creating a step. I glued two strips of plasticard on the sides on the inside of the sewer, and painted the "sewerage" part a dark green, and then smeared white glue over it once it is dried to create the water effect. Once the white glue has dried, I washed it with a brown wood stain to give it that, er, realistic look and a sheen.

Close-up of the unit filler

Rear view showing the interior of the sewer and a giant rat.
I enjoyed putting together this unit, and am bidding on more figures to do up another one. Wish me luck on the auction!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Chain of Command Campaign: Normandy Game 2

You can tell when a game was particularly exciting when the AAR contains few photos because the players were too involved in the game to remember to take them.

The second game in the campaign depicts a battle during Operation Bluecoat proper. Martin's British have been  tasked to roll up the flank of the German forces, which has been anchored on a village along a road.

I thought I did OK for the Patrol Phase, and had Jump Off Points which allowed me to deploy into all but one of the buildings on the table.

Martin rolled high on the Force Support, giving him 10 points and me 5 points to spend. Gambling that Martin will not pick a tank after the last battle, I chose an IG 18 and a Medic.

As it turned out I was correct: Martin chose to field a section of Paratroopers (he is planning to paint a whole platoon of them) and a Forward Observer with a 3" Mortar battery.

Martin started aggressively, pushing his paras and one section towards my position straight off. I deployed one section against his paras on my right, and in my centre I deployed one MG team and my infantry gun (seen in the foreground in the photo above - they were deployed inside a ruined building which we removed to facilitate play). Caught in the open, the infantry section was almost wiped out, while my other MG team kept the paras pinned behind another building.

I thought I had the game in the bag at this point, but then Martin's FO went to work and called down a barrage on my position. Pinned by the fire, I was unable to move my men or deploy more onto the table. To makes matters worse, I rolled very few 5s on my Command Dice, so that I could only lift the barrage once - when I used my second Chain of command die to end the turn, Martin (who had more dice) simply continued the barrage.

Under the cover of the barrage Martin withdrew the battered section. The shelling also killed my entire section on the right (leaving a wounded Junior Leader barely escaping with his life) such that the paras found themselves without opposition all of a sudden. As he moved another section to outflank me on my left, I knew the game was up and ordered an orderly retreat while I still could.

We both enjoyed the game very much; it was a tense game from beginning to end. We also enjoyed the support we deployed - I think I might pick a mortar battery of my own in the next game if I can!

My crushing defeat disappointed my CO and made me very unpopular with the men. With 8 men down for the next game, I decided to call for reinforcements and received enough men to bring my platoon up to full strength.

Martin on the other hand managed to impress his CO, although the high number of casualties he lost did not endear him to his men.

At the end of Game 2, the score is:

CO's opinion +1, Men's Opinion 0
Casualty: 3 lost (total 5 lost), 2 Miss Next Battle, 2 Returned to unit

CO's opinion 0, Men's Opinion -6
Casualty: 4 lost (total 7 lost), 3 Miss Next Battle, 2 Returned to unit
Reinforcement 8 men

Game 3 will probably be played in two week's time.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Halfling Huntsmen

As I said before, the problem with an army list is that you end up trying to have one of every unit on the list...

These count as hunstmen for my Warhmmer (The) Empire army. Officially, there aren't halflings in the Empire army anymore, but they are part of the fluff and lore, and so I wanted to include them in my army, and I thought the skirmishing, scouting huntsmen fit them best.

They are Copplestone sculpts now sold under by Vexillia/Mirliton and by Forlorn Hope. They are really nice sculpts and easy to paint. There are four poses for the archers, including the Robin Hood lookalike, plus one of the leader holding a sword with a bow strapped to his back.

I decided to model the skirmish tray to resemble the ground of a forest, so instead of using static grass I used a coarse light green flock, and some fallen foliage from Darkson Designs (not sure it is still available from them though) for the flocking, and fringed the lips of the tray with foam to represent the shrubs at the treeline.

I've got a unit of handgunners to do after this, but I've also got a few other things lined up, like an Armourfast farmhouse, another horde of skaven clanrats, some night goblins... should keep me busy till the end of the year.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Warhammer Game: Empire vs Orcs and Goblins

A few weeks ago we realised that between fg and Adrian we actually had a sizeable Warhammer army, and so we got them all together on Sunday and fought a battle bwteen the greenskins and my WOTR army.

3600 pts of troops face each other across farmlands 
'We was just having a stroll along the river when these trolls jumped out from under the bridge and threw rocks at us!"
Push of pikes!
Not being familiar with the Orcs and Goblins codex (Adrian literally removed the shrink wrap on the book at my place) we naturally played the rules wrong, but it was still a fun bash. In fact, I had so much fun, I am now in the process of getting enough night goblin figures to field an all-night goblin army (that's an army that is made up of all night goblins, not an army of goblins who don't go to sleep...)!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

More rats and some gobbos

As part of my new policy to paint for my opponents, I painted another horde of skaven clanrats for fg.

Once again they were bought assembled and primed off ebay, but these were based on flagstone patterned plastic sheets which appear to be the same ones I bought from Wills. I therefore had an idea to use the ones I have to multi-base them, as I thought I could make some sort of a vignette with the skavens coming out of the sewers via a manhole.

As it turned out a manhole would be harder to fashion than I imagined, but in rummaging through my stash of toys I came across the Tehnolog Castlecraft castle which I bought but never assembled, and I found some parts which would work: I decided to make the whole unit as a vignette where the skavens are coming out of the dungeons of a ruin.

The whole unit on a custom-made movement tray.
Skaven coming out of a trapdoor on the floor - I cut the figure's legs off below the knees.
I added a giant rat on the base to make it look less sparse.
Side view again, showing the window.
I am quite happy with the way the unit turned out, and having just won another 35 skaven clanrats off ebay, plan to make another horde with a unit filler using the Castlecraft parts again.

After finishing the horde (37 figures) in 3 weeks, I turned my attention to the old fantasy regiment goblin archers Adrian and fg passed me. They passed me a total of 22, and I decided to make it up to a round 30 with command by buying another 8 off ebay. Unfortunately I had a minor disaster stripping them with Dettol and I lost some bits, resulting in me having one figure short; I decided to use a snotling figure fg gave me to make up the shortfall.

The goblins do not have a movement tray as I am not sure what the best formation to field them in is. They are also unflocked as I thought Adrian should flock them in the same fashion as his other goblins to give the army a more cohesive look.

They do come with home-made mushrooms on the bases, as well as a banner I made using a bit from the Warhammer giant kit and a dwarf helmet from the Skull Pass kit; I painted the helmet the same way Adrian painted those of his dwarves, and put an arrow through it - I call it the "Dwarf Mocker" banner.

While I wait for my next lot of skavens I may work on a unit or two for my own army to. Stay tuned.