Friday, 29 April 2011

Skaven list trial and a swap deal

Over the past two weeks I have started assembling and building a new fantasy army for a tournament in a weeks time. The problem with this is I have had no time to play test the list to see if it is competitive and I know how to use it.

I have now remedied this by playing two games, against high elves and vampire counts. I had to proxy in quite a large number of empire figures, so it looked a bit daft, but my opponents were very gracious. I lost both games but both were competitive and I thought that I was close to winning both.

Based on this vast bank of experience (!) I have formed the following verdict on the various units.

Grey Sear. The Magic worked very, very well. I managed to take grave guard down to two figures and a banshees unit down to one wound, until they had a great magic phase when they rebuilt both units... I have not yet used the skalm, but I was a bit alarmed when I reallised that I had not given him any saves at all.

Clan rats. I have large units and they appear to work quite well. I suspect that board and sword would be better than spears, but I am working from the starting point of two Island of blood starter sets, so you work with what you have. In both games I used them 5 wide in very deep columns in an attempt to gain the stubborn ability. This worked quite well but they did bounce rather sickeningly against grave guard! I guess most things would.

Weapon teams. In the first game the high elves shot the flayer apart before he could do anything and the poisoned gas teams were fried by a stray lightning bolt from the wheel. In the second game the gas team was my MVP with direct hits with almost every shot. The problem with the gas team is that they quickly move out of 3" when the clanrats march.

Doomwheel: In both games this scared my oponents and made them do daft things. Suffered a lot from missile weapons and the grave guard went straight through it, but worth it just for the oponents reactions.

Warp Cannons: Whilst they did not make their points back in either game, I just love the concept, so they stay.

Gutter Runners: I have not yet had a war machine to face but they have quite an effect on oponents making them worry about a fast moving skirmish force. Worth keeping.

Based on this and comments made by my oponents I have changed my force to the following;

35 Clanrats with full command, handweapons & shields and a poisoned wind team

36 Clanrats with full command, spears and shields and a poisoned wind team

2 warp lightning cannons
two lots of 5 Gutter runners with slings and poisoned attacks
Grey seer with 4+ ward talisman
Battle standard with enchanted shield and 5+ ward talisman.

Chiefton with Halberd.
Warlock Engineer with doomrocket

The good news is that I now need to paint less clanrats.

The better news is that I have managed to swap a large collection of various celt figures (brought for Warhammer historical, but frankly I was never going to get around to painting) for a random box of old Skaven.

When I got home, I unpacked and found a massive collection of rat shaped goodness (see photos)...

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Skaven weapon teams: now in colour #2

As promised earlier today, here is a post with the remainder of the Skaven weapon teams I have recently painted;

Skaven Warp grinder

This strange little combo is part warp grinder and part warpfire thrower. I made the swap of the rear guy to add more variety to the warpfire thrower base. I think it looks OK, but I would have a lot of difficulty explaining why you need this great barrel of fuel strapped to the back of a rat whilst you are tunneling.

Oh  well...

Having said that I think the barrel looks great and the wood grain comes up very nicely.


Now this is a very strange bit of kit indeed. part unicycle; part motorbike and part doomwheel. At various times when painting it, I struggled to know which bit of clothing or limb matched which rat.

I elected to paint the parts separately because I was not sure how much of the inside you would be able to see when it was assembled. Now it is all together you cannot see anything, so these photos are my only lasting memory of wasted effort..

In hindsight I might give them both tail swaps because the metal tails do not look all that great. Still there are a lot of details on the model and is is quite fun to paint. Add the shell / flail bits and it looks a bit more complete. Not sure what he thinks he is going to use that knife on, but it better be tall!

Skaven Weapon teams: now in colour #1

It has been a busy few days, but I present for your viewing pleasure (?) a small selection of Skaven weapon teams..

2 poisoned wind throwers,
2 warpfire throwers,
1 warp grinder and
1 doomflayer

I know that this is more than I need for my tournament list, but once you start it appears daft to stop.

I plan to include photos of the wind and warp throwers here and the remainder in a post later in the day when I have compiled the photos...

Poisoned wind thrower.

The only real conversion I attempted with these was to swap the guys around on one. Not too adventurous but it does add a bit of variety. I also bored out the barrel, but you cannot see that too clearly on these shots.

For those who have seen this army develop I have indicated status by the colour of the rags they wear, the darker and more unclean, the lower in status they are. I have painted these guys as mid ranking kind of guys to match the clan rats they accompany.

Warpfire throwers

With one of these teams I have swapped the rat who carried the warp fluid with a warp grinder team. See if you can swap which one. This created some problems making and adding the pipes that join the two to ensure that they look consistent as they pass between the team mates. I think it looks quite natural, but please let me know if they do not.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Skaven weapon teams: WIP

I am fast approaching the halfway point on my three week challenge to assemble and paint a 1500 point army ready for legionary tournament, Holy Easter  weekend if behind me and I am way behind schedule; so it is time to press the go faster button....

I have now assembled a selection of Skaven weapon teams. The Island of blood box set comes with poisoned wind mortar and warpfire thrower weapon teams; I have two box sets so I have two of each team. I have supplemented these with a Doomflayer team and whilst I was collecting this I treated myself to a Warp-grinder team...

I have kept the Doomflayer team in three separate components to make painting easier. This is quite a tall piece. Quite disappointingly they have kept with the monkey faced Skaven for both this and the Warp grinder teams.

I could not help fiddling with the other weapon teams and have split and then recombined the warp-grinder and warp-fire teams. I used a piece of guitar wire and an old soft metal empire standard to rebuild the wire between these two teams.

Time to roll up my sleeves, set all other toys aside and get on with this thing!!!!

Wish me luck!

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Rats with sharp pointy sticks

Today marks the end of my first week in my three week challenge to assemble and paint a 1500 point army for a Tournament I have on 7th May (Legionary). 

To mark this momentous occasion I have now completed another 8 Skaven clanrats with spears and Shields. Unfortunately this means I have only finished 18 out of the 96 total I need to complete.

The good news is that I have this week off work, so I hope to get a whole load of painting done, otherwise I am going to be in a whole world of trouble.

[thinks] I wonder if I will get away with empire proxying for rats...

maybe not!

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Every horde starts with a gathering.

On Saturday I started assembling a new army ready for the Legionary '11 tournament. That means I had left myself 21 days to assemble and paint 96 models.

I am now 5 days through and I have at last managed to complete some figures. Albeit only 10 Skaven clanrats, at least it is a start...

As discussed on Tuesday, I have attempted to go for a very uniform rag colour for the Skaven rags. I opted to have the rags go whiter the higher status that they are. For this reason the Clanrats are painted as a mid colour rag.

I have chosen to represent these clanrats as Clan Septik, so they are painted with very rusty weapons. I chose to do this with washes of Bestial brown and Orange. I am quite happy with the look that this has created.

I love the little rats that appear here and there, if only there were more!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Skaven panic and my colour trial is complete

On Saturday I started assembling a new army ready for the Legionary '11 tournament. That means I had left myself 21 days to assemble and paint 96 models.

Well we are now 3 full days through and I have assembled 40 odd Skaven and finished painting my first one! OK, lets be honest, the Skaven I have painted was a packmaster and it does not fit into my proposed army list! But it looked like such a nice figure that I could not resist....

Not a good sign of how easily I get distracted!

I elected to paint the Army as Clan Septik. This Skaven Clan is renowned for never cleaning or maintaining their weapons - In spite of this abuse, their blades never loose their edge or fall apart. [plenty of chances to paint rust]. Clan Septik Like to wear off-white robes to better show their filth off - Facts courtesy of White Dwarf 373 - [I love the option of painting an entire Skaven force in very plain off white colour rags, with the thought that the higher their status the whiter the rags.]

With that in mind, I have taken the packmaster as a mid status kind of rat, roughly equivalent to a Clan rat, so I have painted the rags as Khemri Brown blended up to Dheneb Stone and selectively washed with Devlan Mud.

I chose to paint the hairs of the skin hair by hair rather than drybrushing, I'm not sure if I will live to regret this! I choose to base in Scorched brown, then paint hairs in Bestial Brown, another layer in a 1:1 mix of Bestial brown and Dwarf flesh and a final layer of hairs in Dwarf flesh,

The snow is there because i have never tied snow before. I have opted to use "Army Painter" Snow flock. It is a bit grainy, but does not look too bad.

More soon, I hope.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Skaven rush: Making the impossible possible

Yesterday I started the tough task of trying to work up from scratch a 1500 point Skaven army in readiness for the Legionary tournament in Exeter, Devon.

Yesterday I wrote a list and today I had a go at assembling a whole hoard full of rat shapped fun.

I have got my hands on two Island of blood sets of figures,so quantity does not appear a major problem...

I have based them in the normal way and have undercoated and drybrushed the bases to half...

and whilst I was at it I assembled the remaining skaven figures from the set.

I know I don't need the packmaster or rattling gun for my list, but it seemed like a good idea to assemble them whilst I was at it. After all you never know when you might have a last minute change of plan!

Saturday, 16 April 2011

When life was getting easy, I took a step into the impossible!

Sorry no pictures today, but read on and you will know why...

Today marks three weeks until the Legionary show/tournament where I have entered into the Warhammer tourni. So it seemed like a good time to think about the army list I would like to take.

After some thought I have decided to go for Skaven, even though I don't actually have any painted figures yet. i have access to the figures from two Island of Blood box sets, so I need the incentive to paint them. So never afraid of a challenge here we go.....

The challenge is to paint a 1500 point Skaven army to a good standard in 21 days.

I spent a good few hours last night working on what I hope will be a competitive army list. As a long time Empire player, I am used to large blocks of infantry. I love cannons and it would be nice to have something like a steam tank.

So the list I have come up with is...
39 Clanrats with full command, handweapons & shields and a poisoned wind team
39 Clanrats with full command, spears & shields and a doom flayer team
2 warp lightning cannons
two lots of 5 Gutter runners with slings and poisoned attacks
Grey seer with power stone & skalm
Battle standard with enchanted shield and 4+ ward talisman.
Chiefton with Halberd.

Any comments would be appreciated, after all I have never played Skaven!

So 96 models in 21 days! That is only 5 a day!!!! Here goes..

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Legionary 2011: Preparation continues

My local club co-hosts an annual tournament and show (called Legionary 2011) in Exeter (UK) each year and this year it is taking place on May 7th. So preparations are well progressed...

The show hosts a number of traders which include:

Angel Barracks
Baker Company
Dreamholme Scenics
Grubby Tanks
Heroes of the Dark Age
Ironclad Miniatures
Lesley’s Bits Box
KR Multicase
Plastic Soldier Company
Solway Crafts and Miniatures
Space Vixens from Mars
The Square

and demonstration games such as...

Abbeywood Irregulars – 1938 – Very British Civil War
Cornwall Wargames Association – 479BC Plataea
Devon Wargames – Battle of Le Mesnil Patry
Escape Committee (Burnham on Sea) – Napoleonic Skirmish – Song of Drums and Shakos
Exeter Inquisition – Infinity (a high-tech 28mm SF skirmish game)
Exeter Inquisition – 40k Zombie Apocalypse Kill Team
Exmouth Imperials - Napoleonic Plastic Heresy
Gary Mitchell – Space Vixens from Mars
Ironclad Miniatures demo game – Grubs!
Mos Isca – Flames of War – Push inland from Anzio
MCS – demo game tbc!
Nik Harwood – Blitzkrieg Commander in 10mm - USMC v Japanese
Nik Harwood – Cold War Commander in 3mm
North Cornwall Beasts and Bionics – Iron Kingdoms Press Ganger games
Portbury Knights – Spears’ Run – Band of Brothers refight
Ryga’s Roughnecks - The End is Nigh (Zombie survival game)
St Austell Wargames Club – Modern day pirates.
Trelawny’s Armies Gaming Society – Secrets of the Third Reich
Tus a’n Orlewen – Somewhere along the Mississippi

We also are hosting three tournaments; 1500 point 40k and Warhammer fantasy and 35 point Warmachine/Hordes.

Although between the two clubs we have loads of gaming tables, a descision was taken that we will need even more for the tournaments and so I got the task of banging some together. We decided we could do with around 40 odd 4' x 2' boards (3 together make 6' x 4').

So I brought 10 sheets of 8' x 4', and marked them out...

Spent a happy our or two cutting them up (under supervision of the cat)...

Gave them two coats of nice green paint.

There we go 40 boards to fill up my back room!

Looking forward to the tournament!

Monday, 4 April 2011

Dystopian Wars: FSA Fleet completed

It may have taken me over a month, but I have finally completed my FSA fleet for Dystopian wars..

I had six tiny flyer tokens left to receive paint, but that has now been rectified...

I can add these to the ten already completed to make a complete flying force..

When joined by the ships and bombers, I can at last show a family album shot, or two...

Hope you enjoy...


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