Sunday, June 28, 2009

AOBR Warboss

I have finished the Warboss for my Ork army, Big Teef. This is the Warboss figure from the Assault on Black Reach box set. It is a really nice figure.

Next up is the first batch of Boyz and then the Deffkoptas. Lets see how much I can get done before I change gears again.

Friday, June 26, 2009

AOBR Ork Nobs

I have decided to start a new army and here is the first unit. I have managed to acquire a couple of the Assault on Black Reach box sets. So far I have only been worried about the Space Marines in the set but the Orks have been calling my name.

These are the five Nob models from the set painted up as Death Skulls. Orks provide a unique opportunity for modeling and customizing. And let's face it, the models are cool.

The basing is not done yet because I can't decide what to do. I should come up with something after a few more models are painted.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Painting a Dreadnought

A few weeks ago I painted up some Rhinos and a few people expressed and interest in the technique used to paint them so quickly. Well, I don't have any more Rhinos to paint so I thought I would do this demo with one of the dreds. For vehicle painting I usually use a sponge technique and that is what I am using here.

The materials for this are very simple. You need a selection of make-up or cosmetic sponges. Don't use sponge paint brushes as the texture of these are too course. The make-up sponges are very fine and will provide a better finish. You need a cheap bottle of paint that is a little darker than your target color. Craft paint is perfect for this. The sponges soak up lots of paint so do not waste your expensive stuff on this.

In addition to the materials listed above you need you normal brushes and paints for all the detail work. You also need a black primed model. For this example I am using my Assault on Black Reach Dreadnought that I have added a spotlight and smoke launchers.

To do this technique take a sponge and dip it in the paint. I usually start with the thin edge of the sponge. Wipe off the excess paint on a paper towel. To apply the paint you will dab the paint on rather than brushing or wiping. Start on a corner of the model and begin applying paint. You want the edges of the model to have more paint and then fade into shadows in the more complex areas of the model. In the picture above you can see what the model looks like after a few coats with the sponge. Just keep working until you are happy with the look.

Once the base color is down it is time to clean-up the model. The sponge will get paint all over so it is usually required to touch things up. I go back with a brush and clean-up the black for areas that will not be the base color. This allows me to paint in details later. At this stage I will also clean-up the base color. I took some GW Blazing Orange and a brush and went over the base color. Be careful to preserve the shadows provided by the sponges. One thing I really like about this is the texture the sponges add. Take a look at the picture above and notice the shading and the texture.

Now that the clean-up is done it is time to paint in the details. In this picture you can see all the metallic work and other random details have been painted.

The last paint step is to edge the base color to bring out the details. For this step I used GW Fiery Orange and just worked all the edges of the model. You can also use this highlight color to add some scuffs and ware marks to the model. At this point you are done unless you want to apply a wash. I use Minwax Polyshades Tutor to grime up the model and add a protective finish.

Below are some pictures of the finished model ready for the table.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

How Do You Play 40K

I know this question is a little cliché. I have seen many blogs ask this question recently but most of them ask the question from the same angle – do you like tournament play of fluffy games. While this is a legitimate question I think it leaves out a lot of options. My friend Tim and I have been talking quite a bit lately about different kinds of games you can play in the 40K world and we have been wondering how many gamers out there have experimented with the rules.

Warhammer 40K is now on its 5th edition and it has seen many changes over the years. It started as a small scale skirmish game with Rouge Trader – almost a pseudo-role playing game. I never had a chance to play this game and I really regret not picking up a copy. When the second edition was released the game had morphed into the familiar unit based battle game. The 2nd edition still retained a lot of detail. This is the edition where people started playing the game in a competitive fashion, but it didn’t really work for that type of play.

This drive to use the game in a competitive way led to another redesign of the rules. Enter the third edition of the game. This redesign was really a dumbing down of the game. The unit rules and vehicle rules were both heavily changed. All dice roll modifiers were removed. The game was so different all the basic army lists were included in the back of the book as none of the 2nd edition Codices were compatible. All of this was supposed to make the game better in tournaments. All it seemed to do was break the game. This was the first edition of the game that I played.

The next two editions of the game have seemed to try and pull back from the extreme changes in the third edition and bring back some of the detail that was lost. The core of the game is basically still third edition. During this period we have seen the rise of supplements, such as Cities of Death and Apocalypse, which try and expand the game beyond the tournament scene. The 4th edition also included a couple of mini-games, Combat Patrols and Kill Teams. The first new expansion of the game under 5th edition, Planetstrike, is about to be released.

In addition to all the various versions of the game as well as all the different supplements GW has produced several other games inspired or set in the 40K universe. These include games such as Space Hulk, Necromunda, Battlefleet Gothic, Gorka Morka, Inquisitor and Dark Heresy. There are also several 40K related videos games. Add to this hundreds of articles from White Dwarf, 40K novels and fan created materials and you have the most detailed and colorful Sci-Fi gaming setting ever created. With all this material available I return to the original question:

How do you play 40K?

Do you play only the current edition? What is your favorite edition? Do you play tournament games or purely friendly games? Do you always play equal points? Do you ever play campaigns? Do you ever make your own rules and stats? Any other questions have I forgotten? What I am really interested in hearing how people play this game.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Sternguard Vets

Finished up a 10 man Sternguard Vet squad. This unit has the 5-man box from GW and then the rest are filled in with other vets or custom models. This project took way too long to do but they turned out nice.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

40K Skirmish - Random Thoughts Part 1

I have been wanting to do some Necromunda style skirmish gaming in the 40K universe for some time but I haven't wanted to do the rules conversion. It seemed to me like either 40K or Necromunda would require too much tweaking to really make this work. That was before 5th edition came out. After playing several games of the new rules I realized that 5th edition is already a 1 to 1 skirmish game. I just does not need to be changed much to do this.

The other night I sat down and tried out a few ideas on how to make this work. Below is the beginning stages of this idea.

Turn SequenceThe basic turn sequence is unchanged from the 5th edition rulebook.

Movement RulesThe basic movement rules are per the 5th edition rulebook.
Disregard the unit coherency rules.
Each figure is treated as an independent unit.

Shooting Rules
The basic shooting rules are per the 5th edition rulebook with the following changes.
Sniper Rifles – target must take a Pin test if hit but no wound is rolled.
Wound Chart – If a target takes an unsaved wound roll on the following chart for the wound effect.
1 – No Effect
2 – Go To Ground
3 – Go To Ground
4 – Wound
5 – Wound
6 – Wound

Thrown Frag Grenades – Frag Grenades are Assault-1 STR-3. They are a blast weapon and use the small circle on the end of flamer template. To Hit is as per blast weapons but roll only 1 d6 for the deviation distance. Range is the length of the flamer template.

Assault RulesThe basic assault and close combat rules are per the 5th edition rulebook with the following modifications.
Ignore the rules for Assault grenades.
Figures that have Gone to Ground, or are Pinned, and are assaulted will recover immediately but they will fight with I=1 on that round of combat.
A model may break-off an assault in their next move phase if their opponent has be forced to go to ground in that Assault phase.
Models must charge the model that they shot at in the Shooting phase unless the target was wounded or forced to go to ground. In this case the assaulting model can assault any target model in range.

Give these ideas a try and see what you think. Next I will look at ideas about force selection but for the most part I think you can do whatever you want. These kinds of games are great for narrative campaign games with mighty heroes and whatnot.