Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Intercept: A Scenario with Living Objectives

Living objectives in a standard game offer a way to get a variant of the usual scenarios. Today, I'd like to present one such scenario.

Mission: Intercept.

Mission Briefing:
Your forces have been tasked with intercepting vital information from two strategic points (message boyz, runners, trains, hover drones carrying data crystals) on the battlefield. The intel is vital to your upcoming battles, but you know that the enemy will also be after the information. Use this opportunity to recover the intel and engage the enemy.

Initial Set-up:
The playing board is assumed to be rectangular, 4 ft by 6ft.
Place an objective in the centre of each short edge of the board (two objectives in total). No scenery should be placed along the centre of the board to allow the two objectives to cross over.

Dawn of War, as per the rule book.

Mission special rules:
Deep strike, Reserves, Night Fight in turns 6 and 7 (if required).

Primary Objective:
At the end of each game turn, each objective moves 12 inches toward the opposite board edge compared to where it started (nothing can stop this movement). Thus: by turn 6, the objectives will be at the opposite side of the board to where they started and by turn 7, both objectives will be off the board!

A player scores 1 "intel point" if they control an objective at the end of every game turn (i.e. at least 1 scoring unit that isn't broken / falling back with one model within 3" of the edge of the objective and no enemy units within 3") . Only 1 unit may claim 1 objective per game turn. If the controlling player happens to be in range of both units (presumably in the middle of the game where the objectives cross over!) then they may choose which one to claim.

Secondary Objective:
Annihilation (as per the rule book).

The winning player is the one with the most "intel points" at the end of the game. In the event of a tie, the secondary mission (annihilation) will determine the winner.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Vindicator Line Breaker Formations

At 100 points with the models on top (minimum of 3), a Vindicator Line Breaker Formation in Apocalypse seems like a good deal. I've used this formation frequently when I play Apocalypse as (to be honest), I am fond of my models that I painted up!

For those 100 extra points, you get a formation that comes on the board together and can use the apocalyptic blast marker. They're particularly useful for destroying buildings and wiping out large squads of pesky genestealers / horde creatures. In apocalypse, I've tended to use them in the building destruction mode the most.

The building destruction mode is particularly effective -- not only can it wipe away the building, but can also kill any models inside that are (for instance) otherwise holding an objective comfortably. Teamed up with some heavy flamers from a terminator squad (or similar), this formation can make very short work of stubborn models crouching in cover.

In a pinch, they can also go (heavy) tank hunting. With strength of 10, there's not many tanks who are going to be immune to their blasts. But as the central hole veers off target, then its not much use (but might still get nearby troops).

Hence, when I use this formation, I really do go all out to take buildings down. But I do have another motive... Let me be honest: there's something very satisfying about removing whole terrain features from the board in an Apocalypse game -- we don't get to do that very often in standard games! Perhaps its just the general lunacy of apocalypse games that pushes me down the "must destroy buildings with objectives inside" route?

Sunday, September 27, 2009

A Few Tables

A couple of pictures of two of the tables from GenCon Oz this year. More can be found on the various forums, but I wanted to quickly show off the variety in the tables that were used at the tournament. The tables and scenery were constructed by Bec (as far as I know) from Queensland (Australia).
I was fortunate enough to play on both of these tables. The first one (above) is a necron theme: the buildings are wooden, but they possess an eerie feeling to them in the right light. My picture doesn't really do it much justice (the light is all at the wrong angle which seems to highlight the grain of the wood rather than the eerie quality of the tomb world).
The second one -- an eldar table -- was just magnificent. The runes that you can see on the table top are all depressed (i.e. recessed) in to the board. The buildings were once again made from a sturdy wood and looked awesome. I was totally blown away with the quality of the boards at GenCon Oz. I've got a few more images of the tables that I'll post at a later date. They're certainly inspiring!

Friday, September 25, 2009

About a Soul Grinder's Legs

A number of my miniatures have long since been painted and my blog is now a little behind in chronicling my progress on them. Nonetheless, I wanted to show what happened when I started to paint the legs of my Soul Grinder. In the previous part, I showed how I was going about painting this miniature in a Khorne style -- reds, blacks and brass colours. For the legs of the machine beast, I wanted to continue in this theme, but add in some suggestions of fire. So using red as the basis for the open field on the legs and "thighs" (if I can call them that), I painted on top some small streaks of oranges and yellows to suggest something with a magma-like quality. Not too dissimilar to the theme of my bloodletter's hellblades on the whole.

The rim of the open fields was painted in a subdued golden colour (with a metallic paint) and the other black parts from the undercoat were drybrushed in boltgun metal and silver colours. I'm tempted to got over a few of the harder edges of the metallic parts with a fine white line to suggest some glinting in the starlight.

Other details included the piping in green, the chaos star on the knee joint in a cream colour and the further fleshy parts in a style similar to the main torso of the soul grinder. I'll get the (whole) finished product blogged about in the near future.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Night Lords Standard Bearer?

An interesting idea for a Night Lords icon bearer that had been cooking in the back of my mind for a little while.

Here, I've combined parts from standard chaos space marines (arms, shoulder pads, bolter, bolt pistol and back pack) with a Dark Angles veteran (head, torso and legs) and a banner from Grave Guard (vampire counts range in fantasy battle) that I originally got hold of to create some unique lesser daemons with.

Originally, I had thought to create a unique squad of necromantic chaos space marines, for which this guy would be a natural icon bearer. They'd be "summoning" the grave guard as lesser daemons (raising the dead!). But as I looked at the miniature, it dawned on me that he was looking more and more like a Night Lords veteran. I'm considering painting him up in Night Lords colours and see how he looks. A small squad of Night Lords would be a neat addition to my usual Death Guard troops. So, does this conversion speak "Night Lords" to anyone else?

Monday, September 21, 2009

September Army List Challenge: Result

Voting has closed. And I can now reveal that the winner is.... (drum roll) ....FOLKERT! Congratulations mate - you polled 35 per cent of the votes. Chris wasn't far behind with 29 per cent. All of the entrants armies can be viewed here.

Hope that you all enjoyed this contest. I'll get thinking about another one for future months. Cheers!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Painting Prize!

This weekend, I was at GenCon Oz for the Warhammer 40,000 tournament. And, I'm totally thrilled to say that I won the painting prize!!!! The competition was VERY tight (1 point was all that was in it). There were some absolutely awesome armies there in my opinion, which is why I was so pleased to get the prize as although I figured I was in with a shot, I wasn't certain I'd win at all.

Overall, I came 7th. Brief run down of the primary mission results:
Game 1: vs. Marines, draw
Game 2: vs. Tau, major win
Game 3: vs. Dark Eldar, major win
Game 4: vs. Chaos Marines, major loss
Game 5: vs. Marines, minor loss

I'll post more on this tournament once I get my photos more organized.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Flamer of Tzeentch Painting (Classic Look)

Whilst the arms were fiddlesome to attach to these daemons, the paint job proved equally challenging. My aim with my first flamer of Tzeentch was to go for a "classic" look -- i.e. a blue torso that progressively blends in to whiter colours to the lower "skirt" portion of the model.
The first choice I made was to undercoat the model in white. I don't usually do this - I much prefer black to undercoat models in as it hides the nooks and crannies in dark colours. I tend to only use white as the undercoat when I want some extra vibrant colours or most of the model in question is to be done in white-ish colours.

The upper torso was basecoated in ultramarine blue, the lower half in white. I then wet blended the two in to once another and applied a blue wash to the entire model. The model was then highlighted progressively to bring out the shape of the torso.

In the final stages, the bright red and yellow flames were added in alongside the finer details of the models eyes and teeth. Whilst the teeth aren't quite at the correct level of contrast and crispness, I'm very happy with the wet blending that I've achieved on this model.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Off to GenCon Oz!

Well, I'm headed to GenCon Oz this weekend for a big tournament of Warhammer 40,000. I'm taking daemons with me and don't expect to win much! (wish me luck!) But I'm at least hoping to get some feedback on my painting and meet some new people there. It should be fun!

I'll post what I got up to at the tournament at a later date (once I've had chance to digest everything) ... in the mean time, I've scheduled some other posts.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Havoc Launchers

Even before 5th edition, I made a lot of use out of havoc launchers as an upgrade to my chaos space marine rhinos. I believe that they are a highly effective choice of blast weapon for the budding chaos commander to choose.

Unlike a loyalist space marine razor back, the upgrade to the chaos rhino won't cost valuable transport space onboard either. I've been very happy with havoc launchers on the whole! Hence today, I thought I'd try to articulate why I like them so much.

Probability to Hit
Havoc launchers use the scatter die like all other blast weapons in 5th edition. Other folks have talked extensively about the beauty of re-rolling (I'll refer you to Adam's article on the average and maximum scatter probabilities to read up on this further).

Havoc launchers are twin-linked blast weapons. You can see in my previous article how this affects normal weapons and why they're a good thing in general. But how does twin-linking affect blast weapons?

Blasts use the scatter die. That means there is a 1/3 chance of scoring a direct hit even in the hands of a snotling. Even if it misses, creatures with high ballistic skills (BS) can reduce the scatter back to zero in many cases.

Hence, regardless of BS, the base probability to hit with a twin-linked blast weapon is 55.6 per cent (i.e. 1/3, plus 1/3 of those missed shots). Adding to that a BS of 4 from chaos space marines, havoc launchers are strong.

The only real choice is whether to re-roll a missed roll to hit. I often find that I keep the first roll to hit as it doesn't typically scatter very far and usually finds its way to hit something useful.

One of the real beauties of the havoc launcher is its range. It often comes as a surprise to my opponents to realize that it can reach an impressive 48 inches across the board. Indeed, players of other armies aren't that familiar with this little gemstone in the chaos player's armoury.

One of the best ways to take advantage of this range early (and shock factor!) in the game is to target a squad that has been deployed toward the rear of the board and try to force a morale check (see also Adam's much earlier article on this tactic). If they fail and run away, chances are they'll be off the board in turn 1. This works well against some Tau and guard squads and occasionally (if you're really lucky) against the odd chaos space marine squad that is opposing you.

In short, I try not to leave home with a rhino without a havoc launcher - they're great!

Monday, September 14, 2009

September Army List Challenge: Poll Open

The entries have been closed and now it's time to vote! The challenge was to create a Space Hulk strike force of 1000 points to take on a psychic Broodlord, his genestealers and any other hybrid monstrosities lurking onboard (who may be able to use small arms) and recover a flight recorder. Full details of the rules were posted here. There are five entrants for the September Army List challenge: Folkert, Chris, Lord, Raptor1313, and Capitano. Their lists are as follows and the voting poll is now open for one week.

(1) Folkert:
OK so here is what I came up with.. IG list that will flame those nasty Xenos from the metal corridors of the Space Hulk, I hope

Basically I took a lot of flamers and grenade launchers, filling narrow corridors with flames is always good and the grenade launchers can blast the genestealers with blasts and nastier critters with krak grenades, while standing behind the others who are carrying flamers, the Veterans can take quite a lot of fire and and will return with a punishing rate of fire thanks to the shotguns, the primaris psyker is there for thematic reasons and his psychic power, which can fry whole squads. the Ogryns are, well a meatshield really, but those ripperguns are nice as well. the platoons are for body count and fluff reasons (hey no guard without footsloggers right?) so here is the list:

Company Command Squad, Vox-Caster, Heavy Flamer, Grenade Launcher,
Carapace Armour, 100

Primaris Psyker, 70

Le Soldat Marbo 65
Ogryns (5), 210

Platoon Command Squad, Grenade Launcher (2), Vox-Caster, 45
Infantry Squad, Vox-Caster, Flamer, 60
Infantry Squad, Vox-Caster, Flamer, 60
Infantry Squad, Grenade Launcher,55
Special Weapon Squad, Flamer, Grenade Launcher (2), 60

Veteran Squad, Heavy Flamer, Grenade Launcher (2), Vox-Caster,
Shotguns (7), Carapace Armour, 135

Veteran Squad, Heavy Flamer, Flamer, Grenade Launcher (2), Vox-Caster
Shotguns (7), Carapace Armour, 140

Total pts: 1000

(2) Chris:
Inquisitor Lord Praetus was old, even for an Inquisitor. For almost 300 years he had served the Holy Ordos, purging the heretic, the unsanctioned psyker and the mutant. Though he was now frail in body, his powerful mind was as sharp as ever. Twice in his long service, he had believed the arch-heretic Warch Tressen was dead. Twice he had been wrong.

On discovering Tressen still lived, Praetus' extensive network of agents swung into action and tracked him the hiveworld of Karvin IV. Tressen had fled Inquisitor Praetus' purge of the lower levels of Primaris hive, and Praetus had tracked and pursued him ruthlessly. Tressen escaped capture for two years, but in the last few days Praetus has received
intelligence to indicate Tressen had boarded a space hulk which had recently drifted into the sub-sector. Tressen wants something aboard that hulk, and whatever it is Praetus will stop him from getting it. Unfortunately, the hulk is not as lifeless as it seems....

Inquisitor Lord Ishmael Praetus, Divine Pronouncement, psychic hood
3 Warriors with flamers [140]

8 Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, including a Veteran with combi-flamer, 2 flamers [110]
8 Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, including a Veteran with combi-flamer, 2 flamers [110]
8 Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, including a Veteran with combi-flamer, 2 flamers [110]
7 Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, including a Veteran with combi-flamer, 2 flamers [100]
7 Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, including a Veteran with combi-flamer, 2 flamers [100]
7 Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, including a Veteran with combi-flamer, 2 flamers [100]

5 Retributors with 4 heavy bolters [115]
5 Retributors with 4 heavy bolters [115]

Total: 1000 points

As you can see my list uses Codex:Witch Hunters, and the theme is fairly obvious: flamers.
Reading some of the stuff in the new White Dwarf about Space Hulk it looks like the heavy flamer is a pretty devastating weapon as you would expect in the tight confines of a Space Hulk, so I've gone all out with them. I'd have liked Dominion squads as they can pack 4 in a 5 woman squad, but a vehicle is compulsory with them. As it stands the list has 15 flamers and 6 combi-flamers. The Retributors with heavy bolters are there to hold strong points and cover advances. I took Divine Pronouncment on the Inquisitor as it would be useful for breaking lower Ld Brood Brothers, and his psychic hood has a good chance of nullifying any enemy psychic powers.

(3) Lord:
My list is based on the Eisenhorn trilogy, with several strike teams moving to take out important targets, often in relation with each other!

Inquisitor Lord, Force Weapon, Scourging (because the idea of lightening in a hulk is awesome!)=105
3 Close Combat Warriors, Familiar=81

3 Deamonhosts=255

Everesor Assassin=95

3 Deathcult Assassins=120

5 Storm Troopers, 2 Flamers, Veteren, Power Weapon, Bolt Pistol, Melta Bomb=91

5 Storm Troopers, 2 Flamers, Veteren, Power Weapon, Bolt Pistol, Melta Bomb=91

5 Storm Troopers, 2 Flamers, Veteren, Power Weapon, Bolt Pistol, Melta Bomb=91

5 Storm Troopers, 2 Melta Guns=70

The idea is that the Inquisitor, and three storm trooper squads advance in one direction, with the heavy ST squad providing support, and cutting through walls with their melta. The Deamonhosts materialize where-ever, basically providing a distraction, while the extremely compact force works its way forward. The Everesor would seek out the head of the clan (broodlord, but should I take a Culuxes instead?) and the deathcult provide support.

This list would be demolished on a normal battle, but in the confines of a hulk, where shooting is minimal, it would be devestating!

(4) Raptor1313:
There is always the chance that a call about a fanged, multi-limbed, nightmarish horror will be confused for a call about Daemons. This is the story all about how an Ordo Malleus strike force got called in to take out...a bunch of genestealers. Sure, it's not daemons, but there might still be some proscribed artefact onboard the hulk, yes? Or, perhaps that's exactly why the OM got called in the first place.

Inquisitor Lord (45)
-Psychic Hood (20)
-Psycannon (30)
-3x Heavy Bolter Servitors (75)

Eversor Assassin

5 Imperial Stormtroopers w/ 2 flamers

Grey Knight Squad
-Justicar w/ Meltabombs
-6 Knights
-2 Incinerators

Grey Knight Squad
-Justicar w/ Meltabombs
-6 Knights
-2 Incinerators

Grey Knight Squad
-Justicar w/ Meltabombs
-6 Knights
-2 Incinerators

Total: 1000

What's the strategy? The Inquisitor and his Storm Trooper buddies basically serve as the mobile 'home base.' They find a place, secure it, and it's your fall-back point. While moving, the Inquisitor and the storm troopers can still lay down some fire, though the heavy bolters take time to actually deploy. (gotta brace, all that jazz).

The Grey Knights are your hunter teams. Each Justicar carries their own meltabomb supply, so there's plenty of demolitions love to go around. The knights also carry plenty of fire; and in close combat they're WS5, I4, S6 guys, which surely counts for something. They carry storm bolters for anti-troop work at range, in a pinch.

The Eversor is the guided missile/backup punch; once a high-priority target (IE: Patriarch) is located, the Eversor goes that-a-way. And, even if it dies? It explodes. One more chance to get that target.

Once the hulk is (reasonably) clear, the Inquisitor can then look for that proscribed artefect/daemon/macguffin that may or may not actually be there.

(5) Capitano:
Well then here is my 1k list of DOOOM...haha I am kidding...but this list works pretty well on the field...just take out that 3 man terminator squad and throw in some rhinos and icons...haha

Chaos Lord w/Terminator Armour, Combi-flamer - 125

3 Man Terminator Squad w/Terminator Champion, 2 Combi-Flamers, Heavy Flamer - 115
5 Man Terminator Squad w/Terminator Champion, 4 Combi-Flamers, Heavy Flamer - 185

10 Man Chaos Squad w/Aspiring Champion, 2 Flamers, Power Weapon - 190
10 Man Chaos Squad w/Aspiring Champion, 2 Flamers, Power Weapon - 190
10 Man Chaos Squad w/Aspiring Champion, 2 Flamers, Power Weapon - 190

This list here is similar to what I use on the field but I use meltas instead of so many the field I would use a 2:1 ratio for melta:flamers...but in the confinds on a ship I will just stick with the there will not be any armour to deal with that soe power weapons cannot deal with and that is 12 power weapons right there 9 combi-flamers and 6 regular flamers on top of 24 bolters to fire into the hordes with the other 9 combi-flamers which are bolters as well...that and the flamers have a bolt pistol side arm if it gets that close as a last ditch effort to help out the firing range or if flamers become ineffective...

In the confinds of a ship I would max out the wounds you would have to take in a heart beat to make sure more of my men surivived...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Inking the Soul Grinder's Torso

Soul grinders are one of those unique painting challenges that combine aspects of tank painting together with fleshy parts. The approaches to both tanks and flesh can be quite different, depending upon the artist. With my soul grinder, I have tried to do it in one single style that combines together how I work on tanks and flesh at the same time.

The first step was the undercoat the entire model in chaos black. For a tank and for creatures, this gives a dark palette with which to work and should hide any unpainted (or missed!) bit in dark colours and make them go unnoticed - at least on the table top. I then went over some of the more metallic appearing parts of the model using a dry brush of silver paint.

I had a tough time trying to come up with a colour scheme for the soul grinder. Originally, I was thinking about going down the Nurgle path: greens and muted browns that are suggestive of both corrosion and decay. This might have been an easy option given my previous experience with painting Death Guard! I then thought that I wanted something else for my soul grinder and started to think about blues and purples (perhaps Slaanesh or Tzeentch?). Both colours are neat to work with and forgiving (especially blue). However, in the end, I opted for reds. Not quite as forgiving as blue, but respectable! Although red immediately suggests Khorne, I think it suits a "fresh" soul grinder who has just come out of the "hot" forge.

Hence I basecoated the fleshy parts in mechrite red, along with some of the metal plates (i.e. the front of the legs). After letting the base coat dry off, I then mixed up an ink / wash to apply to the red portions. The mix consisted of a few parts of black to a few less parts of brown / chestnut, with a little bit of water to dilute the mixture down to the right consistency level. The ink was then applied over all of the red parts to ensure that it got in to every recessed nook and cranny on the soul grinder.

The pictures in this post show the soul grinder at this stage. The ink has dried off and I'm left with something that already appears to have plenty of depth to it. The nest steps will be slowly highlighting the raised fleshy parts up a few tones in colour to give it a more life-like quality. Then, I'll press on with the more tank-like portions of the miniature.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Battle Summary: Mixed Daemons vs. Blood Angels (1000 points)

This is a short battle summary from a friendly game of Chaos Daemons versus Blood Angels (1000 points). Let's have a look at the respective army lists first.

My daemons:
HQ: Herald of Khorne on Juggernaut with Unholy Might (120 points)
Troops: 10 bloodletters (160 points; deployed with the Herald)
Troops: 9 plaguebearers, icon, instrument (165 points)
Troops: 9 plaguebearers, icon, instrument (165 points)
Heavy Support: Daemon Prince, iron hide, daemonic gaze (130 points)
Heavy Support: Daemon Prince, iron hide, daemonic gaze (130 points)
Heavy Support: Daemon Prince, iron hide, daemonic gaze (130 points)

My opponent's list looks like this:
Lemartes (100 points)
Dreadnought with assault cannon (125 points)
Assault squad with 10 members, 2 plasma pistols, 1 powerfist (305 points)
Tactical squad with 10 members, 1 missile launcher, 1 meltagun, 1 powerfist, Rhino transport (275 points)
Vindicator (125 points)
Land Speeder with Multi-Melta (65 points)
2 Death Company Marines (free!)

The game is being played over three objectives and the set-up is table quarters. The game board is almost entirely featureless apart from one large hill in the centre of the board that has some spooky looking ruins on top of it. The ruins provide a 4+ cover save and the hill is considered "easy up and easy down" but it does block line of sight from one side to the other.

One of the objectives is in the dead centre of the ruins, another is near to my opponents corner of the board and the third is in what would be my quarter of the board (if daemons set up like other normal armies that is!).

At the start of the game, my opponent gains first turn and proceeds to set up in his quarter of the board. The vindicator and the land speeder are toward the corner of the board, whereas the rest of his army are as close to the centre as possible. He elects to split his assault and tactical squads in to two (using the combat squads special rule).

Early Turns.
Unsurprisingly, very little happens on my opponents first turn. With no targets to pick from, he advances forward some of his troops to claim the central objective. His chaplain commander attached himself to half of the tactical squad, whilst the other half remains in their rhino. The assault element spreads itself out whilst the rest of the army remains fairly static.

When my daemons finally show up, I get lucky and my primary wave gets chosen to come on first (as per the daemonic assault rules). My primary wave consists of one group of plaguebearers and two of the daemon princes.

I drop one of the daemon princes near to the rear of his army and get lucky with the scatter die - he gets placed even closer to the vindicator. Within charge range in fact - that's how close the scatter die take me! I place the second daemon prince facing down the assault marines -- I want to take out his scoring units! The prince scatters a LONG way to the opposite side of the hill where he has no line of sight to my opponent's men. I lodge my plaguebearers next to the ruins and, for once, the scatter die keeps them there. I run the plagebearers into the ruins, claiming the objective for the moment. My first daemon prince takes out 3 assault marines with daemonic gaze. The second prince moves up the slope a little bit, but stays out of line of sight.

The vindicator shoots at the daemon prince next to it. He misses and scatters in to the death company! Splat! Two dead marines. The daemon prince then loses two wounds from a combination of the land speeder and the tactical squad.

The assault squads shoot at my plaguebearers, resulting in only one death and then charge them. We cause 1 death each, which would ordinarily mean a tied combat. However, the instrument turns the tie into a win for me. But nothing further happens.

In my turn, my daemon prince near to the vindicator charges it. The vindicator gets wrecked as a result. My plaguebearers don't suffer any further wounds, but kill another marine. Its a slow attrition going in my favour here!

The prince who scattered over the hill comes jogging around the corner, takes out a pair of tactical marines and charges them. He wipes out the rest of the 5 man squad.

Middle Turns.
The dreadnought shoots at the prince who slew the tactical squad, scoring one wound before charging in to him. Another wound results on the prince, but the prince destroys the dreadnought's close combat weapon in exhange. On top of the hill in the ruins, no further plaguebearers perish, but they slaughter the rest of the (originally 5 strong) assault marines thanks to some fortuitous die rolling (and poor saving throws).

My other plaguebearers come in to play and deep strike on top of the objective in my home table quarter. That's two objectives to me and the third one is being contested. The bloodletters and herald use the icon off the first squad of plaguebearers to come in to play near to them. Little of further consequence happens.

The land speeder finishes off my daemon prince in my opponents home quarter and then lemartres and the other assualt marines shoot (without effect) and charge the plaguebearers in the ruins. The charge leaves only two plaguebearers left alive. Having lost the combat, they then promptly flee back to the warp. The rhino with the remaining half of the marines inside moves up the hill to help Lemartes claim the objective. The dreadnought miraculously kills his opposing daemon prince.

Late Turns.
I move the bloodletters and herald close to the rhino and charge the thing - with a rear armour of 10 and a bucket load of attacks, my bloodletters explode the rhino's fuel tank in no time whatsoever. Boom!

The marines engage my bloodletters as a consequence and they're left fighting in the middle of the board with casualties being taken on both sides.

My final daemon prince comes in to play in turn 5 and I attempt to land him near to my opponents objective (in his corner of the board), but I scatter a little too much and have a teleport mis-hap. He goes back into reserve.

On top of the hill, my herald pretty much single-handedly finishes off the chaplain whilst the rest of the bloodletters take care of the remaining marines.
The dread walks over to contest the central objective in my opponents turn and every bloodletter apart from the herald gets torn asunder by incoming fire.

In my turn (turn 6), I try again with my last daemon prince and he comes in on target this time -- near his home objective that the landspeeder has swooped to be nearby. I run him to within contesting distance of the objective.

The game ends at the end of turn 6. I control the objective in my own corner. The central objective is contested between my herald, his dread and the remnants of the tactical squad (another turn, and I'm sure the herald would have been back in the warp!). In the other corner, my last daemon prince contests the objective. Victory to daemons by 1 objective.

Random thoughts.
The herald of Khorne is amazing for the points cost - protected in a mob of bloodletters, he's a force to be reckoned with. But maybe I need more than 2 icons in this army? I'm not sure. To be honest, I was very surprised by the result. The marines looked like they'd easily win in the middle of the game.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Horus Cloning

Here's a question for all of you out there that enjoy talking about the warhammer 40,000 background: What motivation did the Emperor's Children have for cloning Horus?

Minor related questions: How did they get a hold of Horus' body in the first place to clone him? Where did the technology come from to clone him?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts :)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Reminder: September Army List Challenge

A quick reminder that the May Army List Challenge is still open for entries! Follow this link for more details.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Mixed Daemons Army Group Photo

A long time ago, I posted an army list for a fun set of "holiday daemons". I figured it was about time that I took a snap of them all in the same place. The picture was tough to take as I couldn't quite get the focus and light levels correct. I'm going to experiment further on that, but if anyone's got any tips for taking some wide-field images, I'd be interested to hear from you!At the centre of the army is the Khorne Hearld, looking resplendent on his Juggernaut, hellblade held aloft. To his left and surrounding him are two units of bloodletters, ready to charge alongside him in to the melee of battle.

To the other side of the Herald are a trio of Tzeentch screamers, hungrily hunting for some heavy armour to blow up with their warp jaws.

In the rear of the image are the anchors of the team: a squad of Nurgle's most pestilent plaguebearers with an icon and instrument alongside a gaggle of warp spawned Tzeentch horrors (again with an instrument and icon, with the Chaos Champion form!). These days, I wouldn't field the horror unit with an instrument, but that's another story.

Finally, we have the two daemon princes. The first is a vintage Great Unclean One, lurking near the plaguebearers. The second, not wanting to go too near Nurgle's followers is an apparent Slaaneshi daemon prince that was reconstituted from a vintage Keeper of Secrets.

This army is a hoot to play with and often gives my opponents a good introduction to what daemons are all about. This army is not supposed to be a killer army and it does struggle against a number of other builds (e.g. anything overly mechanized). But its good fun to play around with!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Gloss Varnish

When I was assembling and painting up my renegade Warp Hornets chaos space marine chapter, I decided to dip all of the finished marines in a glossy varnish that was intended for use on wooden floors / panels (etc.).

As can be seen from the pictures, the Warp Hornets already suffered from me not having a great command of painting yellows. With the varnish painted on top of the (sun burst) yellow, the Warp Hornets marines certainly stand out on the table top. Never once did I overlook a single one of these marine in play. They are almost iridescent in the sunlight!

Further, they have never once broken or had their paint chipped -- the latter being the original point of using the varnish. But as one of my opponents was fond of telling me: if I dropped any of them on to the floor, they'd simply bounce! Indeed, these marine bases are more at risk when they fall from a great height than the marines themselves (especially this terminator)!
In more recent times, I've tended to use gloss varnish only as a painting resource. By that, I mean that I use it to highlight creatures and body parts that are naturally slimy looking in appearance. In my usual armies, this means (generally) Nurgle's followers. In the picture to the left, I have one of my plaguebearer heralds of Nurgle. This particular one has had gloss varnish applied all over (rather than selectively). Notice how the redder portions of the model seem to glisten whilst the green skin exudes a slimy quality. I've also used this idea further on a Great Unclean One, which can be seen here. In the future, I'm probably going to use varnish more sparingly -- only for the open sores on Nurgle's followers to really accentuate the fetid paint scheme.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Hirst Arts: Fieldstone Bridge

If you've not heard of Hirst Arts or Castlemolds, then I'd thoroughly encourage you to check out their website. If you like lego, casting plaster of paris, and you like creating your own scenery, then no doubt about it: Hirst Arts is for you. I love their products and enjoy investing time to create various scenic pieces from them.

One mold that I purchased from said company was the fieldstone bridge mold. It allows the construction of a neat bridge that is wide enough to fit citadel miniatures across it -- check out the picture above. The casting process took a little time: it required 10 lots of the pieces contained in the mold, plus drying time on top ... but this is very modest in comparison to the other projects that you can undertake with other castlemolds.

The bricks from the molds are nice to work with, so long as you avoid getting air bubbles stuck in them during the casting process (very annoying). But their website has various tips on how to avoid this issue. I simply used hobby plaster (dental plaster is more durable, but also more expensive!). To glue them together, I just used some PVA wood glue! Very easy. You can see the end result in the pictures. I've undercoated the bridge in black and then slowly drybrushed it lighter tones of greys and off-whites to give a stone-like appearance. I like the result overall and it'll be seeing some play here at home! (The width of the bridge can accommodate two circular 40k bases side-by-side which makes the scale very suitable for 25mm or 28mm gaming). I've got a few more castlemold buildings around the place, so I'll make some more postings on them in the future.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September Army List Challenge: Space Hulk

Well, it has been far too long since I've had a challenge on Warpstone Flux, so I've got a new one for you today!

You'll notice that I haven't mentioned Space Hulk in a very long time, but with all the new buzz about it, I got thinking about some old scenarios and re-read the old rule books (Yes - I've got the old edition of the game, as can be seen here). Whilst I'm yet to give in and purchase the re-vamped version of the game, I wanted to issue a Space Hulk related challenge. So, here it is.

Overview of the Challenge.
Space Hulk Eridanus IV has suddenly materialized on the radar screen in Segmentum Pacificus after almost 600 years of going missing - last seen heading away from the doomed (genestealer cult infested) colony on Raxus-5. You have strong reason to believe that genestealers lurk on board the Hulk. They might have hybrids with them (think: imperial guard with sharper fingernails) and your psykers suggest that there's a malevolent and very old Patriarch (think: broodlord psyker) alongside them. Your mission is to launch a swift strike on the Space Hulk to recover the flight recorder and determine what is on board.

(1) Design a 1000 points (standard mission) strike-force army from any codex to take on a numerically larger, combined force of broodlord plus genestealer (tyranid codex) contingent that can also weather small arms fire from any additional hybrids (codex: imperial guard).
(2) The action takes place on board a space hulk. There's just about room for terminators to get down the eerie corridors (in single file). Dreadnoughts simply won't fit and rhino sized tanks are well over-sized!
(3) Think about your arms: you're going to need a balance of ranged weapons and close combat items to help you out in the confined fighting space on board the Space Hulk.
(4) Post your army lists as a comment to this posting and suggest why they're well suited to the mission.
(5) On Sep 14th 2009, I'll start a voting poll that will be open for 1 week to vote for what Warpstone Flux readers consider to be the "most effective army list that also best articulates the theme" (whatever readers interpret that to mean) out of all entrants.
(6) Winner will be tallied and announced on September 21st.

Extra kudos will go to unusual entries that don't use armies that are notorious for
Space Hulk boarding actions (e.g. Imperial Terminators; Death Wing and the like).

Remember, the real aim of these challenges is to help others design effective army lists that are both themed and effective. The theme here is Space Hulk. There are no prizes beyond honour and kudos!
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