Friday, March 26, 2010

Bikerz go WOOOOOOO!

     Here's a little peek at those Nob Bikerz I mentioned in the last post. The happy fellow in the middle is my Painboy, and you might see the Space Marines flamer attached to the Nob with the Big Choppa. I also have a sneak peek at my Forge World Warboss with a little hitch-hiker that I purchased for just this purpose some while ago. I think it's perfect! Gotta love that Ork character!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Incoming Ork Bikes and Armies of the Future

     With the Kommandos done, I was fired up. Like I said in my previous post, the painting process for those Kommandos was just painful for various reasons. Once completed, I was refueled. I plunged into one of my Ork Battleforce boxes and immediately started gluing my last three Nob bikers together (and my fingers). I have combined a few bits to build a Painboy on a bike, and I even scavenged a Space Marine flamer to make my shoota/skorcha Nob. I'm chomping at the bit to paint them up and that will lead me towards my Warboss on Bike! HURRAY!

     I've been pondering my future army ideas. I'm constantly thrilled with how deep this hobby goes. My imagination and creativity gets a goodly amount of exercise just dreaming up new armies. Right now I'm thinking of doing a group of Sternguard as Deathwatch. I've got my theoretical Imperial Guard army tempting my wallet as well. My more immediate thoughts are of a Salamanders variant of my Space Marines, so once the Orks are done, I'll have to refocus on those guys.

     I just purchased some foam trays for my Orks from Battlefoam. I can't fully explain how awesome my Battlefoam case has been for me. My current case has been getting some really good use. I've got this thing loaded up to near full capacity. I just noticed that they have a new bag coming out and it looks slick. I'm wondering which bag I'll eventually upgrade to: The new 720 or the massive 1520. I guess this depends on what my third army ends up being.

     Last bit of news here. I've found a new 40K related podcast that I've been enjoying. It's called 11th Company. The podcast is very focused and nearly completely 40K tactics focused. 40K Radio has been sucking and I'm tired of pointless babbling about beer drinking and shitty puns. I've enjoyed World's End Radio, but they aren't strictly 40K focused. Check out 11th Company if you get a chance.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Shhhh... I've got a "sekret."

     FINALLY I've completed my Ork Kommandos with Boss Snikrot. I must say that painting these guys has been the most painful squad I've ever done. I'm not sure why, exactly. The fact that every model was different in sometimes extreme ways maybe didn't help. Maybe it was because they were all metal (with the exception of the two with burnas). All I do know is that it seemed to take forever. They do look pretty good together, although I'm not happy with how some of them fit (or rather DON'T fit) on their bases. These models have their feet WAY too far apart for a normal 25mm base. You basically have to balance them on their heels and it doesn't look good. The burnas are worse but since they are plastic, their weight doesn't cause all the problems that the metal models have.

     I've been tweaking my 1500 and 1850 point lists for my Orks. Things seem to be falling into place. My thoughts keep slipping back to my Space Marines and all the additions I'm planning on making to that army. I really just need to find some focus in order to expedite this Ork army so I can get it on the table. I have eight Lootas, three Nob bikerz, and the War Boss on the Bike left to go to reach my 1500 point list. To hit my 1850 mark I'll need to throw in a Deff Dread (those new models are insanely cool), and some Deff Koptas in the very least.

     By the way: Am I the only one out here that just wants the Blood Angels Codex to be released already, purely for the fact that it means we can get to a non-Space Marine based codex a little faster? I doubt it.

     Here are some more pics of my Kommandos:

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Leader of the pack

     Well I received this awesome model from Forgeworld this week. This is my first full Forgeworld model that I've had to build. I feel that I need to state just how much a pain in the ass this model was. Sure, there's tons of detail, but to that end, there's TONS of little fiddly bits that require an amazing amount of frustration to get these parts to come together properly.

     The worst part had to be the guns. Now there is some slick detail here indeed. They have a belt of ammo going up to each gun from a box slung under the chassis. Coming out of each gun are a stream of empty shells and a dangling bit of empty ammo belt. Here's a pic:

     The gun is one piece but the full belt, empty belt, and shells are all small seperate parts. The amount of time I spent on those parts is just stupid. Sure, it looks good, but why the hell did I do that? Hopefully it'll be worth it when it's painted.

     Obviously my main concern is that there are absolutely no instructions. It's just a few pictures of the completed model, then on the reverse side a picture of the contents of the box with a few words to describe the parts. That's great, but I was left with two parts that were described as "dampeners" and I have NO idea where these things are supposed to go. I assumed these are shocks, but I can't tell how they're supposed to be hooked up. I've looked at the Forgeworld site and eyed their pics up and down and can't spot these tiny little bits on their model at all. I'm just leaving them off.

     Regardless of all this, I'm very much looking forward to painting it. I've got some great ideas of how I want it to look, so now I have some motivation to get cracking on my Ork Kommandos so that I can start work on this bad boy.

     Unrelated note: Played some games on Saturday, good times were had by all. Battle Missions book is totally full of win. It's official.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Mission Success

     I had a really good day at the CLGS today. I won every game I played, I had a pretty good time, and the Battle Missions book seems to be pretty slick.

     First, my orks! They performed excellent. The Trukk showed to be an extremely lethal addition to the army. I played a 1000 point game against my friend Sean with his Eldar army. Turn one was a down right murder! I flung my three Nob bikers and the Trukk filled with 10 Nobz and my Big Mek up the right flank. The awesome open-topped-ness of the trukk allowed me to disembark far enough out front to setup a truly epic assault. With the Nobz plowing through the Eldar in assault, my 20 'Ard Boyz just sat back on our objective, making sure no sneaky Striking Scorpions tried to take it. I had pretty much wiped the Eldar by the end of turn three. For as awesome as this all sounds, it was assisted by some exceedingly terrible rolls on my friend's side. I found myself in that uncomfortable position of feeling bad for him.

     After that first game, we got the Battle Missions book and played a game of Kill Teams. I really dig it, but I must say that this game type needs a few rule clarifications. If you and your opponent have an understanding before the game starts, then it's totally cool. This game type seems like it might be easily broken by certain armies (namely horde armies). I got one more two on two kill teams game in before I left, and this too was tons of fun.

     I got Vulcan Hes'tan in the mail the other day, along with some squigs that I plan on using on both objective markers and potentially with the Warboss on Bike that I'm getting for Forgeworld. Vulcan represents really the beginnings of my "third" army. Really I'm just building a variant of my current SM list to be more Salamandar-ish. I really still want to do a Imperial Guard army next, but that will have to wait for a while. I've got plenty to paint until then.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Battle Missions = Excited!

     Man oh man! I couldn't be any more excited about this Battle Missions book than I am right now! One of the biggest things that pulled me into this hobby/game was the narrative. I was hooked when I began to learn how gritty and unique this sci-fi fantasy really was. This book taps directly into that vein.

     The primary motivation I have for painting my models is that I want them too look complete on the table. I want my opponent to feel the same way so that, when we're playing, you can SEE the story play out. There's fantastic subtext to everything, sometimes even the rules themselves! My tactical marines all are unique in some way. There's a story there. I have rank markings, runes, and reasons for all of it. As the game unfolds, I've found myself choosing particular marines out of the squad as casualties. Not because it has massive strategic purpose but because I have a story in my head about it. It's like being young again and playing Cowboys and Indians, but now that I'm 31 I think this 40K game is a bit more reasonable for my age.

     I have a friend who has, in less than a year, amassed four armies. All but one was directly selected purely because of the story behind the army. This is what we crave! Now seriously Kris, get to painting. Hah! Just kidding... but seriously... paint.

     I hope I enjoy this book, and I really look forward to exploring the template of creative missions provided. I'm going to be introducing some people to 40K this weekend, and this might be the perfect opportunity.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Knee Jerks

     Okay so I will freely admit that I still consider myself to be a relative newbie to 40K, let alone table-top gaming in general. I've got a small observation to make: The community seems to be very VERY reactionary to rule updates. This could manifest itself in an updated army codex, a FAQ, or even a rumor.

     Now one arena I'm surely not a newb in is video games. I've been playing all my life. I remember the fond nights spent in front of the glow of my Commodore 64, my brother's Odyssey, and even our Pong set-top box. I'm certainly "old school" when it comes to the PC/console side of the house. I used to be much more of an early adopter, and one of my knacks was conquering a steep learning curve very quickly. I could start in on a completely fresh game and have a ton of the tricks sussed out very early. It would almost always show up as a nearly unfair advantage against other players who weren't so fast to catch on.

     I'm not bragging, I just noticed that this was a strength. I tend to switch games pretty often (less so now that I'm in the military and my horrible pay doesn't really afford me the support of both my hobbies in full) and this played to that special ability I had. The one place where I tended to linger was always MMOs.

     Anyone who has spent a significant time in any MMO knows that one of the constant evils that shadows this particular genre is the cries of "NERFED!" or "OVERPOWERED!" This was something I thought I had left in the digital realm but I'm finding it alive and well within the table-top kingdom.

    A recent update to the Ork 40K FAQ added a bonus to having a Deff-rolla. Being a new Ork player, I was interested in that little tid-bit but I certainly didn't immediately punch in the Games Workshop site and order up a bunch of rollas. I recognized it for what it was: An added advantage with plenty of risks.

    I really didn't give much more thought on the matter until about two or three days later when Bell of Lost Souls ran two stories, back to back, about the rule change filled with great wailing and gnashing of teeth. One article went so far as to proclaim mechanized lists dead.

     This is a systemic problem here. People get so worked up about codices and rule updates that it really just descends into a noise, a cacophony of complaints that really doesn't serve much good for the hobby. I think that new players (and really; speaking as one) will most probably find this distracting and confusing. I know that many new players are looking to get the biggest bang for their buck from their first army. If they're anything like myself, they're going to research the hobby/game intensely before choosing which army to start investing in (and lets face it; it's an investment). This kind of "Army X is the best, oh wait now Army Y is" just doesn't speak to the generally calm people I've associated with in this hobby.

     Perhaps it's just the hyperbaric chamber that is the Internet that causes these over-reactions. Whatever the case, I encourage my fellow gamers to find calm and peace and know that "This too shall pass." can be a mantra in which you find solace.