Monday 29 August 2016

More Infinite HATE: Infinity Battle Report vs Neoterrans

I recently pottered down to HATE again to get a game of Infinity again. This time the mission was Frontline, and my opponent was playing the Neoterran Capitaline Army.

I placed my HVT in a nicely awkward spot behind a storage container, with a Hidden Deployment Spektr next to her. He was a forward observer, in case I needed an extra specialist up there.

On the left flank, we had my Mobile Brigada Lieutenant, a Grenzer Sniper, in a much less aggressive but no less annoying position, and the ever awkward Pi-Well.

The right flank was mostly intended as area denial on my HVT - an Interventor with Killer Hacking Device and Lunokhod Sputnik should be quite capable of stopping anyone getting too close.

The Neoterrans dropped some horrible forward deploying remote with an Auxbot way too close to my Camo Prowler for me to be happy. (His bot is in the top left quarter, by the pedestrian crossing, while the Prowler skulks on the left hand side of the shipping container directly below that.)

To counter, I dropped in my Total Reaction remote half behind a shipping container, with a clear view of the PanO remote. I also had a camo token up on the roof of the building in the centre, in an awesome sniping position. The camo token was actually a mine, dropped by the Zero hiding in the big square room to the north.

After a lot of nervous shuffling, the Bolt link team opened up on the TRBot, successfully taking it out.

This frees up the PanO bot to start a murderous rampage, starting off by flaming my Prowler. I declare an Engage as getting into close combat with it is probably my best chance of stopping those brutal flamethower shots from turning me to mush.

And here's a positioning mistake veteran players will recognise - Pi-Well is too close to the Prowler, and in a straight line, so will get caught by the flame, failing his dodge and losing his ODD (although he passed his armour roll!).

Complete rookie mistake - I place the Prowler facing towards my lines for no good reason, thinking that it's close combat and it doesn't matter. The PanO bot tries to walk away, the Prowler goes to smack it and messes it up, getting Electric Pulsed and immobilised with his back to the entire PanO link team.

The only redeeming moment is that someone gets in a lucky shot and takes out the AuxBot. The main remote continues on to try and take out the Mobile Brigada (I found out later he'd correctly guessed my Lieutenant), but fortunately, a lucky face to face roll has the Brigada put a nice big hole in the bot, on the far side of the board to the PanO Machinist.

Having discovered the "sniper" is in fact a mine, and wasted a bunch of orders trying to move around it before discovering the truth, the Bolt link team introduce me to the fun of "Drop Bear" thrown mines, leaving a bunch of the board inaccessible to me until the mine is dealt with.

And finally, a couple of bots and the machinist head up the field towards the HVT. One of the two is an EVO Hacker remote. I immediately get very tempted to try out this new Killer Hacking Device I have burning a hole in my list...

My turn starts in a pretty dull fashion (so no pictures) with my Grenzer nosing around a corner and drilling some holes into the TR bot on the far side of the board (up in the top right corner, for those following along at home). I also have my Engineer run back to the TRBot and get it back up and working, much to my opponent's dismay...

The Killer Hacker Interventor then throws up a Cybermask, runs up to next to the HVT, and helpfully drops out a Fast Panda. The new hacking programmes feel like selecting from a menu where everything is delicious, and I eventually settle on Red Rum.

It seems this is an excellent choice, as the EVO Hacker takes so much damage from the hacking programme that it melts into scrap, through it's extra unconscious levels to dead - and no chance for the Machinist to repair it!

PanO turn two... A Bolt with missile launcher carefully edges into position... (The PanO HVT is nestled up in the corner of those boxes, so pretty much unreachable.)

And down goes my TR bot, for good this time.

For reference: Don't just set up your Engineer out of blast radius of your bots - don't leave them there after they've patched them up, either!

(At this point, my objective of completing an Engineering roll on the HVT becomes impossible, as I hadn't brought a doctor.)

The link team then wake up and go murder the Prowler just as he's coming around.

Then the Machinist makes a brave run across the table to repair the PanO bot to injure, then finally take out my Lieutenant...

After the loss of Lieutenant turn, I take more of a pounding, losing more and more models. I manage to run the Lunokhod up the field to cause a bit of damage and try and score some points, but the Spektr gets unlucky and goes down, meaning a loss to me...

Key learning points
  • Remember to be careful about model facing, even when you think it's not important
  • When healing or repairing models, remember to step away again, doubly so when you know your opponent has a missile launcher
  • Start working out some better offensive plans to actually kill things - dirty tricks and defence is solid, but being ground down in the casualty exchange!

Sunday 21 August 2016

Quick update: How's that Tale of Gamers Challenge going?

Well, it's not terrible!

Where I wanted to be, with one weekend to go, was to have all the Forsaken assembled, and half of them painted, and be going into next month's assembly.

We have eight out of ten Forsaken assembled, and five are mid paint. Five of next month's Marauders are assembled and ready for undercoat.

I am tempted to do a little bit of a swap, and finish off the five Forsaken I'm mid-way through, but paint the five Marauders as the other half of this month's progress. The Forsaken sculpts are pretty detailed, and there's a lot of fiddly detail to deal with.

I think I'll just see how I go next weekend.

Wednesday 17 August 2016

Guest Blog: Alec: Painting an army in a week, part 1

In a new thing for the blog, I've invited a guest blogger, Alec, to write a piece. He was giving me some friendly ribbing about how slow five months is for a Tale of Gamers challenge, and mentioned he was painting a similar sized army much faster. I felt it was only fair to highlight his pain and suffering as he attempted this.
- The  Responsible One 

So, when I mentioned to TRO that he was being too generous in getting a thousand points of Age of Sigmar onto the table by counting in months and not days, he asked if I wanted to stick some of my current challenge onto his blog. "Why not," I thought, "it would be kinda cool". The aim was simple: get a thousand points of Age of Sigmar Dwarves onto the table of Warhammer World in a week!

Why a week?  Because I am indecisive, I was going to run some High Elves, then maybe I could do Lizardmen right?  Oh but Dark Elves look cool too!  Maybe just paint up some more Chaos as I have at least half a realms worth still to go... Ooooh and Greenskins, I have a few of those still laying around needing paint on 'em to finish painting the collection...

 Anyway, by the time I decided, I had a week - in amongst the other stuff I needed to do, like pack, spend a day travelling and so on. So less than a week really! On the Sunday, exactly a week before I had to have them ready, I had about half the army ready to be undercoated, and a little more because it was an 8th ed style unit. Also at that point I had miners getting primed as well as that was the incarnation of the list. Yes, indecisive!

So there is how they were starting!

The initial list was

1 Warden King
1 Runelord
20 Thunderers
20 Miners
20 Warriors with hand weapons and shields
10 Warriors with great weapons

Idea behind it was use as much Battle for Skull Pass models as possible.

This started evolving rapidly!

Currently the list is sitting as

Warden King
Warriors with hand weapons and shields
20 Warriors with great weapons
20 Thunderers
10 Ironbreakers

I started painting the Warriors by getting Army Painter Plate Mail sprayed onto the chain parts, then it was onto the beards on the torsos while the parts were separate. Alongside them I started the Thunderers. Two days of painting I have almost got 60 of them to a VERY basic level for Warhammer World.  Tonight (Thursday) I sprayed the characters, Iron Breakers and 20 Battle for Skull Pass Warriors.  As I've almost done the great weapon Warriors and Thunderers it means I can swap to the last 30 models with minimal fuss.

Iron breakers I foresee little problems with, again spray them plate mail, paint the beards on separate heads and them wash before picking out bronze colours means they will go fast.  The older BfSP sculpts will take a bit longer, but will end up roughly the same as the Thunderers, blue and silver, random beard colours, leather pouches etc as you can see from the messily prewashed models!

Pretty simple scheme means it's fast to do as well.

I'd have loved to have got them a little better rather than splodged colours, but meh, limited time plus it gives me something to build on as if I enjoy the Seeds of Hope at Warhammer World as much as I expect to, I think the Dwarves will be making a return trip soon and progress can be seen!

Monday 8 August 2016

Tale of Gamers: Forsaken Test Paint and a bit of assembly

My key goal for the weekend was to test the planned paint scheme for my army. I'm terrible at visualising colours, so it's vital I get some paint on a model early on to get a good idea as to whether or not the scheme in my head will actually work.

So, here's the guinea pig. He's not finished - the objective was purely just to block in the main colours to make sure they tie together OK. I'm using an off white Vallejo for the white armour, washed with Nuln Oil thinned with Lahmian Medium. The cloth is GW light purple edge paint with a very thinned GW purple wash, too. The horns and growths are bone and Earthshade wash, while the skin is Rakarth Flesh and Fleshtone wash. The metal detail is the new GW light silver, which is really very good. Stormcast Silver? Something like that.

My white definitely needs work. I think I'll probably layer some light greys and whites over the base and wash to make it cleaner. The flesh needs some bruising and detail picking out. All the bone needs detail picking out by hand, which will suck.

I'm undecided about the belt and straps. Sim reckons I should use a different white, I was considering a brown of some kind. I'm still not sure.

Still, next weekend I hope to have five of the monsters up to something approaching tabletop quality. Should be pretty feasible!

Here's another two assembled - just three need the arms and heads adding now. I've tried to give each one a bit of personality, rather than just jamming parts together at random. At least, they work in my head.

Forsaken are Warriors of Chaos who've mutated too much to be completely in control any more. They're never going to make Champion, let alone daemonhood. They're on a slow descent towards spawndom.

Slaanesh is very much about excess, and the rest of the warband probably has mixed feelings about them - respect for their dedication to have pushed themselves so far, but disappointment (with perhaps a little 'there but for...' feelings) in their failings. The name that springs to mind, for me, is The Indulged.

Friday 5 August 2016

Circle of Chaos Kickstarter Ajjatahr - Experimenting with Paint

I had recently bought many new delicious paints, and decided I wanted to see what they were like. Given the palette of colours available, I thought Ajjatahr, that delightful tree-person from the Circle of Chaos Kickstarter would be an excellent test subject.

The colours I was playing around with were some Vallejo colours from their Model Colour and Model Air range, a Dark Star sepia wash, and some Coat d'Arms colours.

I heard a few people referring to the Vallejo Dark Sea Blue, from the Model Colour range, as being an awesome dark blue green for blending and shades. In this case, I started off by using it as a base coat. Sadly, I mixed a bit too much retarder medium in, so had to go for a teensy bit of a walk to wait for it to dry.

For those of you who remember me painting my D&D Tiefling, Myth, I used some of the Dark Sea Blue then to blend the darker colours, and it was excellent for that too.

Next up, I drybrushed using the Vallejo Model Air Pale Blue. Yes, it's advertised for airbrushes, but it still works just fine on a brush. This was followed up by the Dark Star Sepia wash. It seemed to work OK, but probably wasn't really the paint I wanted in this circumstance. I'll have to try it out again some time on something else.

Next up was some Coat d'Arms "Italian Red Earth". I sort of loved and hated this all at the same time. It was the consistency of milk and had practically no coverage. For blending and thinned down as a wash, it would be lovely for adding some depth into a colour, but on it's own, it covered very poorly. It's made by the people who made the first Games Workshop paints, and the coverage of yellows at that point was pretty poor.

I also used their Angel Red on the mushrooms - this had a much better coverage, and had a nice tone to it.

I fixed the yellow with some more sepia ink washes, and drybrushing with the Pale Blue again to bring the model back together. Patches of moss and growth got a heavy drybrush of Model Air "Duck Egg Green", which worked well. Coat d'Arms Hawk Turquoise was dropped into the eyes. The base was more Italian Red Earth, washed with the Sepia while still wet.

Finally tidied up the base once to wash was dry with some drybrushing - mixing the Duck Egg with the Italian Red Earth to excellent effect. The base edging is the Italian Red Earth after ten billion coats and basically shovelling the stuff on. If there was any detail to obscure there, it would have been obscured!

On the back, you can see some of the Angel Red better on the fungus growing on the body.

All in all, I really enjoyed this experiment. It was very much playing with paints in ways I wouldn't usually, and not falling back on old tricks. I liked how the model came out as a result, too!

I want to say something deep here, but can't think of words. But experimenting and trying new things is how you learn, alongside practice. I hope to be doing more of it in the future.

Wednesday 3 August 2016

Tale of Gamers: A beginning

So, I am engaged in a battle of nerdery and productivity with James over at Gonzo History Gaming. I ahd a bit of a think, and I've sketched out my army as:

Lord of Slaanesh on Daemonic Mount
10 Chaos Marauders
10 Chaos Warriors
10 Forsaken
2 Chaos Spawn

First up on the block are the Forsaken, as they're already half assembled. You'll notice I'm sticking to square bases with this army for compatability with older systems. In order to stay on target, I need to get them all painted by the end of August. I'm continuing to assemble the second five while I paint up one as a test to check I'm happy with my planned colour scheme.

By halfway through the month, I should have half painted and the others assembled, and be forging ahead with prepping the Chaos Marauders and Chaos Spawn for painting.

This is an ambitious pace, but it is not impossible. Wish me luck!

Monday 1 August 2016

Weekend progress - goblin wizard painted

So, alongside the fun and games of trying to paint a small Chaos army in five months, I knew that I needed to get a few quick paint jobs done in between, if only to maintain my own sanity, if not interest in the project. I know I have a bad habit of getting hung up on stuff if I spend too long on that and nothing else. So, along comes another goblin.

This is a GoblinAid sculpt by George Fairlamb. I originally painted the robes blue in the intention of painting stars on it in yellow, but the practice stars soon made it clear I didn't have the brush control to manage that. So, that turned into the star on the hat.

I have also updated my Goblin project page with the extra progress.

I also got a bit of miniature preparation done - nothing work photographing at the moment, though. I finally finished assembling and undercoating my Arco-flagellants for my Inquisition force. I also started on a Chaos Blacksmith for a painting challenge over at the Oldhammer Forum.

The model pictured, though, was my cleaning the resin on Tik Tok by Darkstar Miniatures, as a favour for my darling wife. It's a lovely sculpt, and made me definitely think about picking up one or two of their kits for painting. Perhaps as a reward for getting through the current Tale of Gamers project?