Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Codex Pictures Blog Trolling?

Ah the wonders of the intarwebz and Gewgle. So I noted this comment on my blog this morning and thought "cool" someone might have read my maunderings. But something didn't click. Grammar and syntax, eerily positive, self-deprecation, and an advertising link. Here's the post in all its glory:

I have just finished watching the Ultramarines movie on DVD, and yes the graphics are not Avatar but once you get swept up in the plot, and immersed in the world, it is all really good.
I agree it is a solid film where it counts, in the atmosphere, and an encouraging start for a small independent company.
It is a VAST universe and let hope there are some more epic films to follow!!
I liked some of the lines from the film, and thought they would make comically awesome ring tones…
Then I found out today you can download them here!

Rather aware of the idea that blogs are a very rich source of market segment research and influence, I thought it might be possible some of the Codex folks or the publishers or whoever might read reviews. I didn't really think they would stoop to being lame enough to troll boards and blogs where people had posted about the Ultramarines movie. So I looked around a bit, and found the nearly identical post in a few other places:

**EDIT** Found a couple more, and now they're using bit.ly or whatever URL shorteners:

A couple are by someone who goes by "King Felix" and the one on my blog by this lovely lady. Who has her own blog, which really has zip to do with 40k. Or Warhammer. She even uses contractions in her writing. I wonder if she knows her account was used to post here? **EDIT** It looks like she's now made her blog private... hmm **EDIT**

Granted, four posts don't make a huge "trolling" campaign. Those are all I can find with only a few hours of Google webcrawling to back up the research. I would bet there are more out there.

I don't mind adding to the publicity - no such thing as bad publicity after all. Maybe it will work and those of us who haven't already purchased it will be swayed, just to see if it is indeed comically bad. That would be British self-deprecation at its best, in the finest tradition of Monty Python and a thousand other snarky UK classics.

What are your thoughts - cheap shot or smart marketing? How will it play to this audience??

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Ultramarines Movie review

I'm torn. I don't want to give in to my GW fanboi nature and wax eloquent as only a mother can over her ugly child, and claim I only see the good. At the same time I know that the entertainment industry runs on money first and talent second. I know that if we, the die hard fans don't make sure this movie isn't accepted and applauded, the real potential we know is out there likely won't ever be realized.

The good:
- Yes! A 40k movie. I've waited for this since reading the Rogue Trader and Lost and the Damned books and realized the cinematic potential this universe has.
- As Jawaballs so eloquently depicts in his review here the production value on the package, novel, and case are outstanding. Everything we as players could hope for I think. The story in the graphic novel is a bit light, but the art is good (and has Tyranids kicking Ultramarine backside mwahaha)
- For what it is, a low(er) budget animated film, it is very good. Compared to other similar movies of similar genre (Dragonlance anyone?) the values and art are excellent.
- The voice actors are good, if often uninspired.
- Sound effect quality was excellent; I really liked the chainsword, heavy bolter fire and brass.

The bad, or what the uninitiated would see if they knew nothing about 40k:
- The animation is jerky, and looks very, very unnatural. By comparison, the Dawn of War/Dawn of War 2 movement are similar, but look more complete and natural.
- Speech mapping of the character's lips to the voices is rudimentary and often appears to be off-sync.
- Pixel jags of character and detail occurs regularly, particularly in ranged shots with multiple characters. I thought it was just my 1080i TV, but I put it into my other HDMI-input 1080p and had the same effect.
- While I get the intended "realistic" effect of the skin/faces, it ends up with characters being nearly indistinguishable, especially with the lack of expressive animations and speech mapping.
- Plot timing. For a 76-minute movie, the first 36 minutes is taken up with Marines walking and whining. Mostly walking. It gets better, but the first half sucked.
- Character development or dialog that helps the watcher understand the depth and nuance of the backstory was largely lacking. Even a few lines of elucidation would have been nice, beyond the quickly boring "Chaos is the root of all evil" that gets intoned over and over.
- I own just about every GW book Dan Abnett has written; I was less than blown away with the almost painfully obvious plot and the lack of character development.

The potential:
- Every one of us that has watched Pirates of the Caribbean (let alone Avatar) knows how unbelievably stunning the 40k universe could be on the big screen. I practically wept to see the crew of the Flying Dutchman and Davy Jones in POTC2, knowing that Abaddon and Sanguinius and Tarik and Bloodletters and Banshees could exist on screen in all their ornate, baroque glory.
- Babylon5, Stargate, V, and (the new) Battlestar Galactica are all fantastic examples that prove without a doubt that Hollywood could do justice to Eisenhorn, Ravenor, or the Horus Heresy plotlines/novels.

Overall - I'm happy and stoked to have it. I'll watch it dozens (and dozens) of times over the next few years and be happy that a tiny piece of the dream is real today. A part of me mourns the unrealized potential, but a bigger part is happy for what Codex has achieved in making this a reality. The bottom line is this movie is worth the money if you're a fan of the fluff or the game. But I think I'd have a hard time introducing this movie to someone new to 40k or gaming in general and expect them to have more than a lukewarm response. YMMV. Anyone know Guillermo del Toro's number?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Stuck on Swarmy

Rather like something stuck in my teeth, I've continued worrying over variations to the Swarmlord list below. After some solid discussions w/YTTH crowd I came up with a "traditional" list; i.e. 2 tervs, 2 tfexes as the core. It's built to take fire and keep coming, with regen on the tfexes and a prime to keep Swarmy company and play wound allocation games:

Variant 1: Swarmlord Deathstar
Swarmy + 3 tyrant guard w/lash: 280+195
prime w/lash, sword, rending, AG: 105
tervigon w/ag, ts, catalyst, scything: 200
10x termagant: 50
tervigon w/ag, ts, catalyst, scything: 200
10x termagant: 50
2x hg: 100
2x hg: 100
16x gargoyles w/ts, ag: 128
tyrannofex, rupture, regen: 295
tyrannofex, rupture, regen: 295

1998 pts

Overall, this looks like a pretty tough list to deal with, but it will have trouble dealing with the opponent's maneuver. The concept also went away from the hammer/anvil idea of a Swarmlord/Parasite combo. Keeping that theme is pretty tough, but this is what I came up with:

Variant 2: Hammer and Sickle
Swarmy + 3 tyrant guard w/lash: 280+195
Tervigon w/ag, ts, catalyst, scything: 200
10x Termagant: 50
Tervigon w/ag, ts, catalyst, scything: 200
10x Termagant: 50
2x hg: 100
2x hg: 100
Parasite of Mo : 160
Doom in a spod w/barbed: 145
22x Gargoyles w/ts, ag: 176
Harpy w/tlhvc: 170
Harpy w/tlhvc: 170

1996 pts

Doom and harpies should keep people on their toes while the parasite/gargs go for the center/obj or whatever. Tervs/Swarmy just get to lumber forward and do what they do.

The third list trades the reserves and drop shenanigans for a 3-wave assault; parasite+gargs, trygons w/regen, and then swarmy+tervs. It trades the 2 big-gun toting MCs for 2 fast assaulting MCs.

Variant 3: Hold it still till I get there!
Swarmy + 3 tyrant guard w/lash: 280+195
Tervigon w/ag, ts, catalyst, scything: 200
10x Termagant: 50
Tervigon w/ag, ts, catalyst, scything: 200
10x Termagant: 50
3x hg: 150
2x hg: 100
Parasite of Mo : 160
18x Gargoyles w/ts, ag: 144
Tryon w/ag, regen: 235
Trygon w/ag, regen: 235


Now I just need to figure out how to work Vassal so I can playtest a bit.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Overloading Target Priority: Saving Swarmy

After this discussion, I started looking into generating a list intended to maximize Swarmy's boost and deathstar functions while overloading opponents' prioritization with must-target assault units, starting with the Parasite and a swarm of gargoyles. Insert horrid pun about the best defense being a swarm of offense..

So far I have what I think is a pretty solid core at 1500 pts to start with. Absent an opportunity to playtest, I'm having trouble ironing out a best option to get it to 2000. Here's the core:

HQ: 570
- Swarmlord
- + 2 Tyrant Guard w/lash
- Parasite of Mortrex

FA: 128
- 16x gargoyles w/AG, TS

Elite: 200
- 2x HG
- 2x HG

Troops: 597
- 10 Termagants
- + Tervigon w/AG, TS, Catalyst; Dominion, Salvo
- 8x stealers w/TS
- + Broodlord (w/TS)
- 9x stealers w/TS


Leaning towards a tyrannofex w/rupture, regen, and a Trygon, plus another gant or two with any extra as the roundout. Rather concerned at the fragility of the troops though. What are your thoughts?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Tyranid Library part 4

More Tyranid art to be found here. One of the big draws to the Tyranid codex for me was what appeared to be a lot of flexibility while still retaining competitive potential. Even so, there is a prevailing mindset that a 2 tervigon + 2x 10 gant swarm in the troops FOC is an inescapable core for a tournament-competitive list. Finding The Back 40k has been an excellent couple of hours reading, with solid posts and thought-provoking commentary.

The first standout post that I read through a few times was Thinking outside of T6: Troops - a solid exploration of utilizing a 6-model unit of warriors to replace the 2nd tervigon. Most useful here is the description of the tactics and mindset needed to utilize a warrior swarm effectively - the when to hold 'em, when to fold 'em. Better yet is a decent tournament showing using this list technique, covered in very, very good detail here: Tyranids at the Tourney: Part 1.

Sometimes it isn't the posts that make a post interesting, but the comments and discussion that go with it. A list sent to Sandwyrm (by Stelek?) engenders some very interesting discussion in this post: List Question: Tyranids. Buried in there is a link to mathhammer's (aka shaten on 40kOnline) Tyranid MC strength vs armor percentages, and excellent soliloquy that eloquently sums up the current meta issues facing nid players:
In the Tyranid world and with all the fast food running around, the ability to project force has become even more of an issue. While the limit of only 6 troop slots and the need to control upwards of 4 objectives by the end of a game has caused the adoption of Tervigons. The return of even faster vehicles and more enemies that are better in close combat than Tyranids is forcing a greater reliance on ranged force projection to control the opponents ability to move.

This is especially true with the new DE list. Which of course led to a batrep post; Dark Eldar vs Tyranids. Predictable Ouch. So far the intarwebz hype seems to be that DE is pretty much paper to the Tyranid rock. After reading these batreps and getting a look at the DE dex, I'm wondering if reserves lists won't make a bit of a comeback in the meta. Smartly played reserves can play hell with glass cannons.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tyranid batrep video losses (1 win!)

Started poking about for video batreps with Tyranids to learn from... managed to find several Tyranid losses. While the idea was to find successful batreps, most of these are eloquent lessons of things not to do, and some rather weak list building. Surprised to see only a single hive guard unit in any of the lists.

BoLS Batrep 14 & 15: Tyranids vs IG: Jwolf and Mkerr faceoff in a desert battle of Tallarn Desert Raiders vs Tyranids
This was a pretty good pair of lists and decent fray - an outrageously impervious demolisher (shaken only 2x vs 28 S10 hits) and a Straken-led force = pain, but the nids gave it a decent go. Not sure if including 2 tfexes and 2 HTs w/HVCs counts as "shooty" though. Interesting to see the choices of termagants as outflankers - but it nearly paid off in late-game objectives.

BoLS Batrep 54: Tyranids vs BA SM (DoW mission) - Aventine's flaming orange Tyranid Hivelfleet Chupacabra faces Darkwynn's Soul Drinkers (Blood Angels)
Terminators are dead hard is all I can say - surviving and then winning against a combined assault by 'stealers, a Trygon, and a Tyrant. Pretty typical multi-trygon, 2 tervigon list. Interesting delayed mid-game use of ymgarls.

BoLS Batrep 51 - Chaos Daemons vs Tyranids: Aventine's Khornate Chaos Daemons versus Lux's Tyranids. Its all assault all the time!
This was just brutal; nids actually won this one. The demon player tried to use disruption placement rather than overloading or deploying far away to try and set up for charges, and paid for it as his units were piecemeal multi-assaulted or shot down pretty handily.

BoLS Batrep 30: Tyranids vs Footdar
This was a weird battle with a pretty scrub 'nid list. I kept asking "why there?" for quite a few movement/placement and assault decisions.

BoLS Batrep 6: Tyranids vs Tau (DoW mission) - Darkwynn's Tau faces off against Bigred's Tyranid horde:
Tau firepower hurts, especially with very poor use of movement and unit positioning for cover purposes. I think this could have gone a bit differently if it wasn't clearly a "fun" match. Funny to watch a stack of rippers try to take down a stack of burgerbots in cc for 3 rounds though.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Tyranid Library part 3

Two more excellent resources from comments to the original Library post:

#**LINKS UPDATED 03/01/2012**#

Messanger of Death's great  Imaginary Life blog - love the fluff from old WDs! This is one of his best, taking Gmort's original ranged anti-tank options post and offering direct commentary.
'Nid Ranged Anti-Tank Options

MoD's well-researched and cross-referenced and -linked commentaries are fantastic; his article on the oft-maligned Tyrannofex is a great example: MAWR Tyrannofex

There are quite a few additional 'nid articles worth reading, but those two really stand out. The rest are here: Imaginary Life: Keyword: Tyranids

MoD was also kind enough to point out the Dark Future Games guys, who've done a pile of articles, including several on individual units. The best aspect of these articles is they are written with an eye toward the impact to the synergy of the list that unit will have - whether a core list element or support, and how to consider that unit in the list building process. Here's a short list of the ones I find to be most valuable as I continue learning:

Tyranids Vs New DE, Thoughts and Concerns based on Experience - this is one of the first "new DE" vs Tyranid articles I've seen, and it raises some good points, but it doesn't look like the DE list used is anywhere near the potential competitive lists I've seen.
Tyranid Tactica: The Doom of Malan'Tai - an excellent commentary on how to use (and not to use) Doom. It definitely made me rethink how I would use him.
Tyranid Tactics: Swarmlord - Best points here are the split between creation of an all-shooty list built around the one deathstar, or an all-assault list to overload target priority. I really like that second idea, and can see a couple variants beyond the inevitable 2x tervigon+2x termagant cores that would be very entertaining. Thinking a swarmlord deathstar + parasite/gargoyle core would be a very interesting start to this idea.

The rest are here: http://darkfuturegaming.blogspot.com/search/label/Tyranids including a couple about modeling and resin offerings for 'nids.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Hulksmash and Competitive Nids - more for the Library

Hulksmash started up a blog back in October (it's here: http://hulksmash-homeplace.blogspot.com/. So what? He's a very, very good player and tournament regular. More importantly for me - he's digging into the topic of Tyranids being competitive at the national level. So when he starts building lists and talking tactics, it's worth the read.

Posts are here:


Best reading is here in his "Can Tyranids Compete" series:
Can Tyranids Compete-part-1
Can Tyranids Compete-part-2
Can Tyranids Compete-part-3
Can Tyranids Compete-part-4

He's also started a dedicated Tyranids tactics thread on Dakka here: http://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/319613.page

Very interesting approaches to deconstruction and planning; at first glance the lists he's come up with so far look pretty low on AT compared to most of the lists I've seen posted, with Trygons rather than Tyrannofexes.

Monday, November 1, 2010

MSU warrior-based 'nid lists

As seems usual the thread started here on YTTH, with what looked to be a pretty loopy list but a solid idea. MSU has been on my mind since a pre-Battle for Salvation post "MSU, Mission Design, etc.; Analysis and Observation" from Mike Brandt over at Whiskey & 40k.

Is it possible to build a competitive "MSU" non-MC list for nids? I like the lists PWillis and Chumbalaya posted to get the core idea down:

2 Primes
2x3 Zoanthropes
Deathleaper, HG or Lictors
4x4 Warriors, boneswords, glands, VC
2x20 Gaunts
3x4 Ravs w/ claws


Prime, dubs boneswords, deathspitter, regen
Prime, dubs boneswords, deathspitter, regen
3 Hive Guard
3 Hive Guard
3 Zoanthrope
20 Hormagaunts, toxin
20 Hormagaunts, toxin
4 Warriors, VC, deathspitters
4 Warriors, VC, deathspitters
3 Warriors, VC, deathspitters
3 Warriors, VC, deathspitters
5 Raveners, Rending Claws
4 Raveners, Rending Claws
4 Raveners, Rending Claws
1995 points

I can't help but think a brood of venomthropes might be worth an elite FOC, rather than Deathleaper/Lictors. Is it worth dumping one of the hogaunt broods for a brood of tox/ag gargoyles? It's pretty clear the walking warriors need some cover; are the hogaunts cover or infantry munchers? What about adding biovores, dumping a brood of raveners to help keep some of the hogaunt cover options open? Or dumping the raveners altogether for 'stealers? Lots to think about...

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Compiling a Tyranid Library, part 1 - Unit and FOC reviews, list themes

I haven't really liked any of the accumulated tyranid knowledge I've seen on various forums as entries are often outdated (pre- vs post-FAQ), so I decided to compile my own. Keeping this list has been very helpful for me, so I thought it might be worth sharing.

Obviously- all credit should go to the original authors.

++Research Archive part 1 follows++

...Units and FOC reviews


...Army list themes

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ambush Tyranids?

Informed by Stelek's discussion here on what ambush formations are and how to conceptualize them: http://www.yesthetruthhurts.com/2010/08/tactica-ambushing-enemy.html

Essentially the idea for an ambush force narrows down to three "classes" of units; assault, support, and security.
1) Assault. These are units going forward to destroy, delay, and distract the opponent. They do not have to be assault units for hells sake.

2) Support. These are units sitting back and providing heavy fire into the kill zone.

3) Security. Normally these provide early warning, but in 40k that can really only be infiltrators and scouts, or for lack of that, bubblewrap units. Outside of that role, Security teams are there to fight off counter-attacks and kill or delay enemy reinforcements. You've all seen the Dirty Dozen, right? Great! That's what these 3 elements are exactly.

The list I posted in the first thread was pretty sickly overpointed, but the core idea was there. Here's my attempt at tweaking that idea into a Tyranid ambush list.

@1997 pts,

tervigon, cluster: 160

elites: 300
hg x2
hg x2
hg x2

stealer brood+broodlord, poison, implant ~x8: 197
stealer brood+broodlord, poison, implant ~x8: 197
stealer brood+broodlord, poison, implant ~x8: 197
stealer brood, poison, ~x8: 151

gargoyle brood w/poison, ag x25: 200
shrike brood, rending, deathspitters, toxin x6: 300

Tfex: rupture, cluster, regen: 295

The Tfex and HGs are the support line; the tervigon is security for the support; gargoyles are security for the assaulters; shrikes and 'stealers are assault. Pretty sure I'm reading the rules correctly that spawned gants are counted as Troops.

Could probably drop a broodlord to bring in a 3rd HG for one of the Elite broods - or pick up some options for the tervigon...

Saturday, October 2, 2010

No Salvation

So maybe painting 2000 points of Tyranids between the 18th and next weekend was a little optimistic... but even if it weren't, life intervened and I won't be able to break away for Battle for Salvation and most likely not for Warstore Weekend.

I have been able to do a little bit though, mostly building and basecoating (white). So far, the forces of gribbly doom that are ready for painting include a Mawloc, a Tervigon, 21 'stealers, 5 ripper stands, 3 ho-gaunts, and 24 termagants. Not sure its worth posting pics of the snowflake brigade..

Why base white instead of black? I'll be using heavy acrylics for speed and vibrancy. I learned the technique on how to use the acrylics from a guy in San Antonio who routinely painted horde armies of 100+ models in under a month; thinking it should work great here. They also doesn't seem to be as darkened by dipping as the regular GW paints, but I'll definitely need to matte seal if I decide to dip.

The idea is to field an army that looks good and will stand out against most battle terrain. Learned the hard way that if you paint these little suckers too dark or with too much of a camo type pattern - they hit the carpet and they're gone. Until the empress of the house manages to find it in the middle of the night after flipping on the light... looks like the biggest spider ever in the middle of the floor - panic and screams ensue:

Thursday, September 30, 2010

In the middle

Almost a week with no painting, modeling or anything except a few frenzied ebay attack runs. Not that my motivation is failing lately, especially given the recent loot from the 'bay - just so freaking busy. Sleep or 40k is a rough decision when it comes to playing, but painting - I needs the sleepy so I don't wind up with franken-nid.

Which reminds me - if you haven't seen Firelight it's worth it just for the Twilight spoof.

Other web nifties found lately: the Table Top Terraformers page has some of the most awesome battle boards. The one with the LED lava is mind-bogglingly sweet.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Decisions, Decisions...

Warstore Weekend or Battle for Salvation?

Either way I would have to assemble and paint a tournament-worthy nid force in time...

Working on the list on dakka and 40k Online and EoW

Should be interesting to see if and how the ideas differ. Wish I had a couple venomthropes though =)

swarmlord - 280
2x tyrant guard + lash whip: 130
410 total

3x hive guard brood: 150
3x zoanthrope brood + spod + tlds: 230

tervigon, adrenal, toxin, catalyst: 195
20 termagant w/dev: 200

tervigon, adrenal, toxin, catalyst: 195
10 termagant: 50

20 hormagaunts w/toxin: 160

mawloc: 170
trygon prime: 240

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A protip for converting Genestealers to optimize their cover save.

One of the better satirical treatments of the competitive gamer mindset.

A little bothered today though - was reading (yet another) army list help thread and one of the more prolific posters noted that having two or more tervigons in your list was "really cheesy and not very friendly."

Frankly there aren't many lists I see lately that don't include a minimum of one tgon, and often three. The battle lines are drawn between someone who wants to be able to play with anyone, and those who want to play competitively as if they are mutually exclusive.

This brings me to another topic. Sideboarding in army lists. One of the principal metagame levelers from MtG is the sideboard. Why not do something similar here? I'd love to see if and how a tournament's metagame would change as the paper/scissors/rock element becomes more of a factor. More importantly for the competitive vs fluffy mindset, one could simply swap out that cheesy tervigon for something less intimidating, like another hive tyrant.

Online Tyranid Painter

One of the coolest webpages in the 40k webverse. Played around and finally settled on my color scheme. Debating calling it Hive Fleet Yuengling, which has two meanings; one is a nod to the saga regarding the origins of the Norse gods - the other is of course, Yuengling beer.

Fluff is this is a hive fleet that started out as a test-tube genesplicing experimentation program by an Ordo Xenos inquisitor named Antrim Erdogan, a Thorian casophilian. Calling it "Project Yuengling", Erdogan's intent was to create a brood to see if he could track its contact back to the Hive Mind. After killing Erdogan, the nascent brood took only a few weeks to harvest the world they were on and begin looking for new prey.

Working on how to do Inquisition locator/ID tags or maybe tattoos...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Long weekend

We just finished presenting a Retrouvaille weekend - always rewarding, but tough. My long hiatus had everything to do with putting marriage and family first. This was working to keep the balance, and maybe to give back to others. Not that I expect this blog even has readers yet, but if your marriage can ever be described using the word "misery" then you might do well to visit the link above. The program saved our marriage after everything else we had tried failed.

On to the gaming part!

The awaited blue box of goodness arrived; as advertised, quickly, and no damage. Very impressed with how quickly it was sent too. At any rate - here's the pics of the goods:
Old One-Eye and two Carnifexes - destined to become Tervigons perhaps... really dislike these models. The heads are just plain ugly. Seeing if I can't work on getting some 'fex or warrior heads to swap them with. Haven't really planned out how to make them look brood-worthy either.
Tyrant and gaunts - four scything talons.. oy vey. Destined for cannibalization. At least the 'gaunts are cool - even one with a warrior head.
Old metal gargoyles and termies - some badly broken posts that will require drilling and replacing with wire at the very least. Might find other uses for a couple of the wings..
Three OOP metal raveners and a Red Terror - since they are already wielding barbed stranglers, thinking at least a couple of these guys will make very fine Harpies. Just need to find wings. Really dig the Red Terror model; pity he isn't in the current codex. Will be fun to paint anyway.
Six ripper stands - I like the idea of 5 attacks with 4+ poisoned to wounds, even with WS2. 6 stands is 30 attacks... and nothing says 'fodder' like a swarm.
Stealers and 3 Zoanthropes - glad I got the Zs. Been playing around with army lists and realizing I really should get a couple. Which of course means I'll have to find something to use for a spod.
Another pic of one of the raveners - just to examine for how to add wings and convert the strangler into a TL HVC...

Also got a copy of the old 'nid Codex - which had a pic on the inside front cover (top) of a blue body/red carapace army that looked sort of like what I think I'm going to go for: the dark blue and red/orange. Much happier after seeing that pic in the codex.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Foam Wars - crazy...

Just read a very interesting article from Plastic Legions on the Foam Wars that apparently have been a part of the 40k/hobby internets lately. I'll be looking to purchase some cases and whatnot for my gribbly hordes pretty soon - but I won't be purchasing them (or anything) from Battlefoam anytime soon.

Article here: http://plasticlegions.blogspot.com/2010/09/foam-wars.html

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Hooray - more Ebay strippers!

Wait - that doesn't sound right..

BLUF: My usual modus operandi of buying heavily based or larger lots of figures that no one else really seems to be heavily bidding against pays off again - the result is I will be stripping most of the models back to metal/plastic. It also makes conversions much more attractive and possible as they invariably include bits or models that I wouldn't wan to put on the table. I've been using Goo Gone Painter's Pal at Wal-Mart and had really good results with it.



Warhammer 40k - (Rule Book, Instructions - purchased 2005)
Tyranids Codex - (copy right 2001)
13 assorted paint brushes
Battle Dice from Citadel Gaming
12' Tap Measure
3 Battle Templates
1 Bottle of Blue Paint (not sure if it is still good, has not been used before)
1 - Blue Tub with lid to put Tyranids in.
4 - Foam Home Made Containers
8 - Gargoyles
2 - Carnifexes
1 - Old One Eye Carnifex
6 - Ripper Swarms
8 - Genestealers
6 - Hormagaunts
12 - Termagaunts
3 - Raveners
1 - Hive Tyrant
3 - Zoanthropes
1 - Red Terror

Most are based black - nothing I can't strip off. Plus a Red Terror. I'll need to be putting together some tyrannofexes, tervigons, and harpies, so much of this will be excellent fodder for construction.
Playing around with color schemes for my 'nids - this is what I think I'll try to do for the carapaces.
Will see if I can't dig up a camera to snap a pic of the test schemes for my stealers.

Saturday, August 21, 2010


It's been 19 years since I first heard about Games Day, and today was finally the day I got to go. 19 years is a long time to build something up in the mind, and I was a bit let down - not to say that it wasn't awesome; it just wasn't as I'd pictured all those years.

High points - the terrain, the terrain, the terrain. Every bit as amazing as every White Dwarf and blog or forum post I've ever seen. Next year I *will* bring a painted army to play on one of those exquisite tables. The (build/paint) and take activities were very cool - nothing like being handed a half-dozen sprues of stuff and a pair of clippers, a base, and some glue and being told: "you keep what you build". Hobby nirvana. Bummed that I didn't get to the Golden Demon displays until most had been taken down - but the few I saw were jawdropping awesome. Talked with the winner of the sword; apparently his FOURTH. Yeesh. I have aspirations, but that's pretty rough competition.

The low points - I was pretty disappointed with the store; I really expected they would have stocks of the things you can only get through online/mail order. Only a very few - so basically, you really do have to get stuff through direct order. The Forge World line was every bit as bad as I've heard, with most people standing in line for over an hour.

Not that the store was all bad - I finally succumbed to the whisperings of the hive mind, which have been gnawing at my brain stem since seeing the new Trygon/Mawloc model. Very stoked about all my new gribbly little 'nids, and feasting on Space Marine biomatter... I have some big plans for painting these suckers up quick, and pillaging both my Space Hulk games for ~60 stealers sounds like a good way to start! Battleforce, Hive Tyrant, Raveners, Trygon, extra box of Termies (for Tervigon goodness later on). Need to read up on the 'nid lists to see what else I need. Guessing zoanthropes and hive guard, maybe a FW Malanthrope to serve as my Tervigon...

The other good part was seeing some of the crew from the NOVA Open, and some of the personalities who were there as well (Jawa, Scooter, a few others).

Can't wait for next year - I definitely intend to play in some of the "big games" as well. Had I known they give prizes and whatnot during those games they would've been a definite on the list, rather than a, "hm, neat but check out all those sprues!" decision.

For today - color me one happy mid-lifer. One box in the long list of things I have wanted to do for a long time has a shiny new checkmark.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

NOVA Open tomorrow

I'll be one of the staff helping out at NOVA Open tomorrow and through the weekend - it will be my first close-up view of a competitive WFB/40K tournament and I'm pretty stoked. If the blogosphere is any judge, NOVA is shaping up to be something pretty special. Players from something like 30 states, and at least 3 countries will be flying in. With Games Day next weekend, that really says a lot about the efforts and thought Mike and company have put into coming up with the format.

I'll be on the pre-registration table on Friday for a while, and then on registration on Saturday morning. Most of the rest of the time I'll be manning a repair station for figs that get broken during play or transit.

I've been a GW player and hobbyist for about twenty years, having started back in 1990 or '91, and have never been to a major tournament or Games Day. To say I'm looking forward to these next two weekends would be a gross understatement. Really hoping the negativity I've seen referenced in blogs and forums doesn't show up at either event.

Before I forget, here's a pic of my WIP Wave Serpent: Eldar_Wave_Serpent_in_progress

It's been a WIP since 2004 or so; I took the time this week to go through and consolidate all my Eldar figures into a few cases - hopefully the organization will help motivate me to finally get out of my fugue and start painting frequently again.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Blast from the past

I wrote this in 1998 or so...


Dark Eldar Army List - Khornate

A brief, sad history...
This army list is based on Teshara, a typical Eldar craftworld whose central god once was Khaela Mensha Khaine, the Bloody-Handed God. Teshara had always been more militant than most. As the depravity of the Eldar heightened, so too did the battle fury of Teshara. Eventually, battle fury became something darker. Warriors painted blood on their armor before battle and took captives for this express purpose, knowing they would battle again soon. As the rituals of battle became bloodier, even the warlocks and farseers began to become involved. Slowly they began to lose contact with the infinity circuit of Teshara.

With Slaanesh dreaming, yet to be born, mighty Khorne himself was drawn to the destructive depravity of the craftworld. It was a simple matter to subvert some of the most bloodthirsty Tesharans. The Aspects were the first to succumb to the plasmic lure; many of the already battle-hardened Guardians were not resistant to his call. Even the farseers and warlocks, only barely in contact with the agonized infinity circuit began to turn. A pity, Khorne does not tolerate sorcery. They were hounded down and murdered. Battle raged in the craftworld as those unwilling to give up their souls were hunted down. Many of the noncombatant eldar were slain in the bloodbath that followed. Until only the mighty Wraithguard and their big brothers, the Dreadnoughts remained. Their souls were the last to go, Spirit Stones shattered to feed the hungry god. The final blow was struck as the infinity circuit of the craftworld was broken, its souls sacrificed to the Blood God.

So simply was born Tresha, known alternately as the Brass Craftworld. Khorne's influence shielded them from the birth of Slaanesh, but his bloody shadow was little better. Its wraithbone tenders slaughtered, the infinity circuit broken, Tresha became cut off from the webways. As the wraithbone deteriorated, the Treshans replaced it with brass and the bones of their dead and those unlucky enough to cross their path. Now little more than a hulk floating through space, Tresha makes its way towards the Eye of Chaos and eternal battle with the Slaaneshi-corrupted eldar of the Crone Worlds. Its ties with reality tenuous at best, Tresha flickers in and out of the warp, emerging sometimes closer to the Eye, sometimes further away, but always leaving a swath of destruction and piles of skulls in their wake.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Going through the blog-o-sphere, there is a good deal of buzz and discussions about varying army lists for the NOVA Open. Hoping I can make it to at least spectate a bit; interesting watching the varying discussions on different aspects of the metagame (null zone in particular). Here's a few:
Looking at his numbers for the 83 players who participated in the 'Ard Boyz finals, here is a breakdown of the armies used:

  • 14 Space Wolves (4 with Thunderwolf Cavalry) (1 Razorbacks/Long Fangs)
  • 11 Imperial Guard
  • 11 Tyranids
  • 10 Orks (1 Ghaz + Battlewagons)
  • 10 Blood Angels
  • 9 Space Marines (2 Vulcan) (1 Khan) (1 Shrike)
  • 7 Chaos Space Marines
  • 4 Eldar
  • 3 Chaos Daemons
  • 1 Black Templar
  • 1 Necrons
  • 1 Sisters of Battle
  • 1 Tau
If the percentages hold for the 96 slots at NOVA, 48 would be some sort of Space Marine (SM, BA, SW, Chaos) close to 40 IG, 'nids, and Orks, with low single digits for everything else.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

BoLS: 40k tactics - Seraphim


Great article!

Sisters and Arbites, a natural fit

Been jonesing to put together an army with SoB and Arbites since both model sets first came out. A while back I purchased a bunch of SoB models from a guy who decided he wasn't going to ever paint them (after basing them in lavender...) The models are in various states of painting; painted, half-painted, drybrushed (= based + drybrushed to pick out detail for initial layering), based, or nekkid. My main goal is to paint a coherent force I can display; as I hardly ever play, but just in case I'd still like something playable that fits w/in the theme of a SoB + Arbites force, maybe with an Inquisitor warband.

What I've got so far:
Celestine (nekkid)
Canoness (nekkid)
3x sister superiors (based)
14 battle sisters with bolters (painted)
1 sister w/heavy bolter (half-painted)
2 sisters w/heavy flamers (based)
3 sisters w/flamers (based)
1 sister with a meltagun (in dry-brush)
4 seraphim (1 w/hand flamers) (based/dry brushed)
1 seraphim superior (w/a chain axe... /sigh - I didn't do the swap and don't really like it; painted)
2 rhinos with parts for exorcist (scratch built) or immolators (either 2x hvy flamer or 1 hvy flamer + 1 multimelta) (based - in lavender...)
3 exorcists - 2 organ types, 1 FW (based in black)

On the Arbites side I have:
1 Arbites Captain (guy with the eagle on his hat - based)
2 Arbites w/shotguns (1 painted, 1 drybrushed)
2 Arbites with bolters (based)
1 Arbite w/grenade launcher (based)

Also have the "Solomon Kane" WH Inquis Lord set:
1 Witch Hunter Inquisitor (half-painted)
1 Crusader (nekkid)
1 Sister Hospitaler
1 Lexmechanic
1 Acolyte
1 Penitent
1 Cherubim

Also have:
1 Techpriest Enginseer
the White Dwarf subscription miniature with the servo arm

I'd like to get a couple of the Necromunda Enforcers Patrol Team sets to fill out my Arbites, but can never get a solid answer on what the box contains. Is it variable?? I prefer the old minis to the newer ones (http://www.zachary.org/games/gw/arbites.jpg). Debating on getting a box of stormtroopers and snipping off the power cables and muzzles of their hotshots for shotguns, and just try to paint them as Arbites.

I have quite a few bits and other parts to go some different directions, but that sorta defeats the purpose. I also have the OOP two first Inquisitor Lords in Terminator armor, pretty sure I have a Vindicare somewhere too.

Any recommendations on what I would need to put together a respectable force based on the nucleus above?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Why blog about games if I rarely play?

Games and gaming have been a cancer I can't beat. Real life intrudes endlessly and I rarely have time to play, but a pretty fair portion of my spare cycles are spent dreaming of games I could be playing. I certainly spend enough money buying figures that for the most part go unpainted and books that get read endlessly. Those spare cycles become army lists that won't get played, creating worlds that won't get played in. The gaming cancer continues to gnaw away, and maybe this is a way to share some of those ideas or thoughts, so they don't simply go to waste in some dank corner of my mid-life.

I think there are others out there who live vicariously one White Dwarf to the next, who always go through the toy department no matter the store, and never forget how cool it was the first time we saw Star Wars in the theater. This blog is dedicated to the quietly outrageous. So come along - there are worlds to be discovered, places to go, links to visit, and most importantly, laughs and adventure to be found.