Friday, 15 December 2017

Terrain is everything - Warhammer TV Tables

Following on from the debate over the terrain Ben and I used in our last match I decided to share with him what GW themselves are using on their Twitch Channel during Warhammer TV Live. I took these screengrabs from a game last week.

Going into this I was already aware how much terrain they use but what I did notice that was surprising was just how few fire lanes are available. The Ferratonic Furnaces, combined with the Munitorum Containers means there are hardly any complete lines of sight from one deployment zone.

Definitely for Ben, or anyone who employs a gunline this would present some challenges. Preventing your opponent from just sitting still and shooting without any disadvantages, but also making those artillery pieces that can shoot without line of sight all the more valuable.

Ben had actually considered dropping the units that could do that but if the normal tables at Warhammer World have had increases in terrain he may well be needing the ability to shoot without line of sight.

They certainly love their Munitorum Containers, over £125 worth of them on one table!

Lots to think about going forward as I'm beginning to realise I'll need to step up my own endeavours in terrain - whether that is producing some of my very own Print & Play buildings, completing my container STC, or creating new pieces and STCs from scratch it looks like I'm goignn to have to find some time to get some done...

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Terrain is everything - Bolt Action WWII tables.

PeteBis heavily into Bolt Action now and although I'm hearing many positive reports from him, Ben and Otty and I'm unlikely to take the plunge into another game. That said I do admire hsi efforts and he hosted a Bolt Action event at Wargames at the weekend and I had to take pictures of the tables he put together. I belive this one was Tobruk

This was Normandy.

Burma, I think.

And Stalingrad

Apparently the Traain was from Home & Bargain here in the UK - perfect scale, including track for under £15!

Great boards, normal 40k will resume shortly ;)

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

'nids part 231 - Rippers Big Build TO DONE!

Not much to see here, apart from acknowledging that the 'build' is done, having put basing material on them.

I fractured a piece of slate to make it more like the ground had broken. Whether that looks effective when it's painted remains to be seen.

I'm going to progress with the actual painting of the models a bit ahead of the base as I don;t want to paint the base and then find when I paint over the top that it just doesn't look like they're coming from underneath the ground. Anyway Big Build Gamboge Stamp of Approval.

Monday, 11 December 2017

'nids part 230 - Greenstuff Rippers BABY!

So I'm currently painting my Trygon and  Broodlord, but my focus is supposed to be on what I need for GT3 and having not yet decided on what I'm taking, or coverd it on the blog I really thought I should focus on one of the two things I will need - my Rippers, just two bases of them. Now I've had a bag of Rippers for ages that always came as extras in ebay auctions and much like the Trygon no reason to do anything with them all this time, my four current bases have always been sufficient.

I've also wanted to make my own Forgeworld inspired Ripper kitbash using press-molds to bulk out the bases. But for one of the bases I rooted out 4 of the Spinemaw variants, because I won't be using any of them as Spinemaws and quickly made a base up. I won't be taking the biomorph but it doesn't bother me, whereas they would if it was mixed in with a normal group of Rippers.

With the Spinemaw Rippers done it was time to look at the stop-gap solution to my Forgeworld inspired Rippers. I have some Oyumaru 'plastic clay', it's exactly the same as Blue Stuff press mold material. You heat it up in boiling water then squidge it on your item and hey-presto - instant press mold!

Now at first I tried squeezing some plaster into this but it all crumbled while trying to extricate it from the two test molds I used, so resorted to Green Stuff. you can just about see the Ripper heads encased in the mold.

Here they are removed. Obviously they are far from perfect but they really don't need to be as all I'm after are ground bursting Rippers to make the plastic Rippers look more interesting.

You can also make out some little bits of plaster I couldn't get out of the mold, but it should be clean now ;)

Having cleaned the flash off the green stuff I glued them on to the base with the three plastic Rippers. I also threw in a cut down Warrior face/head that is almost Ripper sized and just adds yet more effect to the base.

The other side. Again the Green stuff casts are pretty mushy with detail but I'm hoping it won't be too noticeable when the ground is built up around them.

I then added some plaster/filler to buid the ground up. Little did I realise I've put exact copies of casts directly adjacent to their progenitors - doh!

Sand will be added next and I'll have to find a way to make it look like they're bursting through the ground a bit more than it looks at the moment.

As it stands the debate rages about Rippers - 3 or 4 to a base rages. I love the models, the rules are rubbish but they're cheap troops that can get on an objective, unlike Necron Scarabs which are actually useful as well as eveything the Rippers do. I already have three bases with 4 Rippers on, and one with 3 but thanks to these press molds this base of 3 looks far more interesting, which was exactly what I was after.

The Forgeworld bases, which I adore, actually don't seem worth it considering just how bad the rules are. What I've done makes more sense, but I may consider creating a more dense version, with yet more press molds built up to the scale of the Forgeworld versions. For now, finish the base and get them painted.

Friday, 8 December 2017

'nids part 229 - Trygon & Genestealer Broodlord/Patriarch - Bonewhite & Chitin highlights

Just because it's smaller and more managable I've focused on the Broodlord. I finished the Chitin and both Bonewhite highlights then I highlighted the skulls on the base, I went bleached white so it was a little different to the Bonewhite.

If you zoom in you can once again see my unthinned, almost clumsy, brush strokes. I honestly don't know if it's me [my control or my eyesight], my brush or the paints. On the one hand I'm accepting of the results but on the other I always think it could be better. Nevermind, it'll do.

While the Broodlord was progressing I started in on the Trygon's Chitin. I really wanted to break this stage up, doing just little bits inbetween the stealer, so that when I focused on it after the Broodlord was complete most of the boring work would be done. This is after four sessions, or parts thereof, while painting the Broodlord.

I did one medium talon and the chest piece in one session, the second and the abdomen piece in session two. Session 3 was the two small talons alongside edging all the plates. Session 4 was the two big talons and three out of the four back plates.

Vents and fourth back plate next, maybe a few tail plates too. Then the last of the tail plates and repeat with the second set of highlights - that's when the tedium will hit...

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

2000pts battle report - Tyranids v Astra Militarum

With GT3 only a couple of months away it was about time we get some games in so Ben and I faced off. Him with Astra Militarum, a more Leman Russ-centric Cadian force led by Pask. While I was running two Battalion of my Nids so I could access more Command Points and then hopefully make use of all the new Stratagems as well as re-rolls.

The low down:
  • Big Guns Never Tire
  • Dawn of War deployment
  • Ben chose deployment zone, but deployed last unit [giving me first turn], Ben seized the Initiative!
With a Trygon, Flyrant, 2 Broods of Rippers and 17 Genestealers I forced Ben to keep deploying while I kept them off the battlefield.

Then with and idea of where everything was I could put what remained down.

I'm thinking with hindsight I should have made more use of this hill and woods as LoS blocking cover, but I had the Carnifex shrouded in the miasma from the Malanthrope, so I thought I'd be OK.

Having seized Ben moved the Vendetta, Hellhound and Guard unit up. He opened fire on the Broodlord and he was brought down to 2 wounds. Shooting continued with the Hive Guard being wiped out and two of the Tyranid Warriors. As my right flank started to disappear I started to re-evaluate my plans. 12 Termagants went on my left flank and suddenly I'm re-evaluating again. There's just no way I can go forward in my turn, I'll have to pull back and just try to hold me objectives with the Tervigon and Carnifexes and hope the soon-come reserves will distract/weather enough fire to keep me in the game.

But shooting wasn't over and suddenly my Tervigon is popped, I have all but two Devgaunts left of my big brood and 22[ish] Fleshborer Gaunts left in the mother brood.

Worse still two out of my three Carnifex are smashed to pieces with all the heavy bombardments. At this stage I just have my head in my hands, Ben had wiped out roughly half my army in one turn, with only 300+pts left on the board. I wasn't even sure what I could do, or if it was at all worthwhile carrying on. I had over 600pts left in reserve so it was worth a shot but it was more an exercise in what was salvageable at this stage.

Ultimately I had to play the objectives. Ben had one of them, Linebreaker, First Blood and 2VPs for the Carnifex. If I can hold three of them I might have a chance. So I bring the Stealers and Trygon in on my left flank with the Flyrant. I then huddle the Termagants in the trees for cover, so I can eventually move them back onto the objective in the frozen pond.

The Broodlord I move behind the hill so he can't be seen and eventually move on the objective the other side of the trees.

I charge the Hellhound with the Trygon and make it, the Genestealers also pile in to the fight. The Flyrant is equally quick off the mark getting up close with the Vendetta, but having chosen just Devourers he cannot do anything against it, it's shooting had been ineffective and I think I'd only caused one wound on it with Smite, or Psychic Scream :(

The Trygon was slightly more effective taking most of the wounds off the Hellhound only for it to be torn apart by the Genestealers. I consolidated forward.

Ben's turn 2 and the Vendetta zooms into my DZ. I no longer have the Malanthrope and Carnifex in shot so it looks like they bought the big one. I think the Flyrant took some wounds too [he may even have been killed] and the Trygon may also have been shot to hell and back [again by it's lack of presence in the final picture].

My turn 2 and there's not much I can do. I misjudge how many turns we may have left before the game has to finish [we were playing in the afternoon but I had to be home by 6:30 to take my wife to her Christmas works do]. So I don't put anything on the objectives, including the Rippers. I threw all I could at the Vendetta, burning through CPs. I give the Termagants Scorch Bugs and Pathogenic Slime and shoot at the Vendetta, taking off 6 wounds, then I use Single-Minded Annihilation to shoot again, and my 22 shots are appalling. Another three failed saves, 6 wounds and adding the single Smite damage I caused in my first turn it's still there on 1 wound :(  To make matters worse Ben is back on 7 Command Points thanks to his Kurov's Aquila Relic dice roll regaining CPs when I use a Stratagem.

My Genestealers multi-charge the two guard units. Only 8 Stealers survive the charge and I split the attacks evenly, using Scything Talons on one squad, killing 5 and then switch to Rending Claws for the other squad killing only 3 [purely out of interest in what would be more effective, although I think I already knew the outcome]. Neither of the squads fail their morale. I'd hoped to break them and them consolidate on the objective, I could potentially have secured all 4 if I'd planned and executed it properly.

We called it at this stage, there was no time left and I would be annihilated anyway next turn. A proper timed game I might have put everything I had on the three objectives but Ben had one, Line Breaker, First Blood, Slay the Warlord and 4 Big Guns VPs so he had 10VPs altogether. He also said he would have put a Leman Russ on the objective on the hill by the Broodlord if he'd known it was the last turn, but it's all moot.

Ben came to the conclusion he should abdicate first turn in future, to give me [Liam and Otty] a fighting chance but I'm not convinced taking such a handicap does us any favours. I had thought the cover I had would be more useful but if I'm not in it everything can shoot through the trees with impunity. As Line of Sight Blocking terrain is in short supply I think a fairer approach may be to treat each tree base a LoS blocking.

At GT3 there will be LoS blocking so we need to practice accordingly, game wise it's far less an artificial balancing act, even if the concept appears that way. I'm sure we'll discuss at some point but it's difficult for me to make a judgement on my list given the result...