Friday 29 December 2017

The Traditional End of Year Hobby Review

I started this blog over 4 years ago as a repository for all my hobby output. I really enjoy the feedback from all the folks who read the blog, and I find it really useful to look back at my output at the end of each year.

Best place to start is what I thought I'd be doing at the end of 2016:

How did I do? I certainly had plenty of fun games, and I had a good year of modelling and painting. As is to be expected though, some of the plans fell through (I only painted one figure for the nobilist warband and I didn't paint any Melniboneans or Genestealer hybrids), while others were pretty successful (I painted some RT adventurers, went to BOYL17 and made stacks of terrain).

Gaming in 2017
At the start of 2017, my gaming group continued with our Ash Wastes campaign, where dirt bikes and desert buggies clashed with dino-riders and huge clanking vehicles.

Wednesday 20 December 2017

More-laques - Building the Necromunda Gang

Morlaque gangers look for loot in a warehouse zone.

Work continues on my new / old Necromunda gang - the middle-class House Morlaque. The two latest additions are another pair of gangers - Graber and Lapp.

Wednesday 13 December 2017

Choose Your Own Adventurers #16: Judda, Space Eunuch

Sometimes models take on a life of their own. They become personalities through the games they're used in and the experiences they have. Add the character of the sculpt into the mix, and you end up with a firm favourite.

"No, Mister Fisk will NOT see you now!"

Judda was painted over a year ago, but I am choosing to use him as the next instalment of Choose Your Own Adventurers because I didn't blog about him at the time, and also he has become (through his highs and lows), one of my favourite characters.

Tuesday 5 December 2017

The Rise of House Morlaque - a New Necromunda / Old Confrontation Gang

Hive gangs battle it out for supremacy.

The release of the new incarnation of Necromunda has got me all excited. Not least because the background in the rulebook feels like a director's cut of all of the great content from Confrontation, married with that of mid-1990s Necromunda. There are great swathes of text from the Confrontation-era White Dwarfs lovingly reproduced and spliced with later canon. We now see again that Necromunda is a planet, with different locations and shifting political power, rather than the trials of a few gangs within a single hive spire.

I confess too, that I'm pretty pleased with the rules tweaks which have taken away some of the tiresome elements from the mid-1990s incarnation, and added in modern gaming approaches.

I'm not the only one who's excited about the new game. My gaming group is due to start a new Necromunda campaign in the New Year - we already have nearly 20 folks signed up, which demonstrates quite how excited people are. In preparation for the new campaign, I've made a start on a new gang. I say new gang, but typically it's an old gang - this time I'm working on the Hunter gang from Confrontation.

If you're not familiar with the Hunters, they were a set of 4 models from Citadel's short-lived Hive Gangs release which was designed to support the Confrontation rules.

Tuesday 21 November 2017

Adeptus Arbites APC

Adeptus Arbites wrestle with rioting citizens.

I suspect that if you had to specify a riot control vehicle for your local law enforcement outfit, the sort of thing that would spring to mind would be a wheeled APC, perhaps with a turret mounted watercannon. Possibly with a dozer blade for clearing out barricades and shunting aside burning wrecks.

Something like one of these:

A few years ago, I used my Adeptus Arbites in a couple of games. I didn't have anything suitable ready to go, so I picked up a marginally over-scaled but cheap toy police vehicle (with sound and light action). This vehicle has seen a fair bit of use in games which require swift deploying of Arbite troopers. It can even be operated by Jokaero. The flashing lights and nee-naw sounds are of course, a bonus.

Tuesday 14 November 2017

Ork Warboss Krugg Fangrot and Banna Waver

Every fledgling ork warband needs a boss to shout at people and to be the biggest, toughest, meanest greenskin around. And how does a boss show people he's the boss? By having a grot carry his personal banner around behind him.

My boss is the fairly ubiquitous Thrugg Bullneck from the Rogue Trader Space Ork Raiders box set. Thrugg is a pretty hefty figure - hulking (by early RT standards), and pulling off a suitably boss-like pose. My copy of Thrugg (aka Krugg Fangrot) has a few rounded elements (probably from rolling around in a box somewhere), but he's in relatively fine fettle.

Krugg Fangrot with his boss pole.

I added the little Blood Bowl snotling to the base because I liked it. Plus I put Krugg on a larger base, so I had some room. The model's pose overspills a standard 25mm base.

Tuesday 7 November 2017

The House of Yakob - Another Building for Helsreach

I know the title of this post says Helsreach, but I've decided I could do with naming my own distinct settlement as a different setting for all my buildings. Something like 'Blackdust Gulch' or 'Edge Town' perhaps. I'll give it some thought.

Today's post shows off the newest addition to the collection of buildings - a mid-sized two-storey house which has become the dwelling of the merchant Yakob Pento (now he's moved from Necromunda, where we last saw him!).

Friday 3 November 2017

Choose Your Own Adventurers #13: The Navigator

Following on from cheetor's lovely Squat miner, it's my turn in the 'Choose Your Own Adventurers' series.

According to Wikipedia (on the subject of Theosophical beliefs) "humans had in far ancient times an actual third eye in the back of the head with a physical and spiritual function. Over time, as humans evolved, this eye atrophied and sunk into what today is known as the pineal extending an "etheric tube" from the third eye, it is possible to develop microscopic and telescopic vision."

I suspect on the basis of this, and other spiritual beliefs, the concept of the Imperium's Navigators was born - after all, they have a third eye and can see weird stuff!

Wednesday 18 October 2017

More Orks for Orktober

Less than a fortnight ago, I painted up the first 40k Space Orc and Space Goblin. You might have picked up on the fact that in about 28 years of gaming, I'd never had the slightest interest in playing with anything orky. But painting that pair of figures sparked something. I rooted around in my boxes and unearthed enough ork figures to make a small warband.

This looks like a suitable Inquisimunda or Shadow Wars starting gang to me!

Tuesday 10 October 2017

Orks for Orktober

Sometimes someone comes up with a 'thing' and it sticks. I can't remember who first suggested painting orcs/orks during October (was it Erny?). I don't know who first called it Orctober/Orktober (Erny?). I don't know why Orktober continues to me an annual thing, where Slannuary isn't. I do know that about three years ago I did actually paint some greenskins in October for Orctober. I also confess (again), that I don't fully understand the attraction of all things orc/ork.

"Got any big gunz?"

This year however, with some Orktober action happening in various Facebook groups, I decided to use it as motivation to get some more figures painted from one of my 'collectible sets'. The set in question comprises the very first fourteen 40k figures released from back in March 1987. I actually have all of the figures and am slowly working my way through painting them.

Monday 2 October 2017

The Power Plant

When a mate pops round to your house and drops off a selection of wargames terrain because "it might fit with your Helsreach buildings", it would be rude not to take them up on the offer. What was kindly donated to me a week or so ago was a selection of dusty old resin Kryomek domes (still produced by Scotia Grendel), and a funky little plaster building.

Monday 25 September 2017

The House of Bergat - Painted Scratchbuild

In my last blogpost, I shared the unpainted pics of my scratchbuilt large house, intended to sit alongside my other Helsreach-esque buildings. I kept on referring to it as a palace during the build and subsequently, but it's clearly anything but. I suspect it's more likely to be the abode of a relatively wealthy merchant - hence it is now the House of Bergat.

Wednesday 20 September 2017

A Man's House is His Castle - A Scratchbuild

Whilst I've put together a small selection of buildings styled after the Helsreach illustrations in Rogue Trader (like this or these), I've not made any larger centrepiece type structures in the style of this hillfort:

Carl Critchlow's fantastic Helsreach illustration.

I've been thinking about making a building in homage to the above illustration, but its quite a daunting prospect. Happily, I discovered some cheap household items in my local discount store, which I figured would be good basic shapes to make a practice build using some of the techniques I would employ on a hill fort.

A pair of plastic bathroom tidies (for your toothbrushes and so on). These were on the clearance shelf and cost less than £5.

Tuesday 12 September 2017

Choose Your Own Adventurers #10: Rico "Snakey" Vitovitch, Pilot for Hire

Last time on the Choose Your Own Adventurers project, cheetor presented us with another golden-clad 1980s musikkie lookalike. My latest contribution is a rather concerned looking pilot (named Lorgar in the catalogue pages).

Thursday 24 August 2017

Notorious Personages, Flyboys and Fuel

A selection of a few things I've painted recently!

Mayor Snakehand 

The fabulous Curtis of Ramshackle Games was generous enough to sculpt, cast and distribute his own Mayor of Helsreach to attendees at BOYL last month. I chose to paint my copy as a rather sinister and self-important individual, fond of intimidating dark clothing!

Tuesday 22 August 2017

Introducing Johnny Noggin, Notorious 'Sunk' Mutant

I do like making models as a result of external influences. Those suggestions that your mates make. The themed group projects. The online community competitions.

This latest figure has been created for the 'Beware Mutants' competition on the Emporium of Rogue Dreams Facebook group (the same group that hosted the Abdul Goldberg competition last year).

The rules for the 'Beware Mutants' competition are simple:
  1. Make a single figure
  2. It needs to be a mutant (use random mutant generator chart in Rogue Trader if you like)
  3. It needs to be a newly created figure
  4. Submit pre- and post- paint photos
  5. Provide a backstory
I rolled up a single mutation for my mutie, which turned out to be a pin head.

Excellent. That sounds like fun! Here's the resulting mutie:

Johnny Noggin - a pin headed mutie with a rather natty sense of style!

Choose Your Own Adventurers #7: Cinereal Jeannie, Inquisitional Psyker

Cheetor excelled with the selection of his Grace Jones lookalike in the last instalment of Choose Your Own Adventurers. My next selection, also part of Inquisitor Clousseau's retinue, is a rather beautiful and delicately sculpted figure from the Adventurers range: the Psyker.

Wednesday 9 August 2017

Olivia Neutron-Bomb - A One-Woman Army

Forward Recon Troopers are elite scout specialists. They are lone operatives, trained for stealth commando missions and surveillance deep behind enemy lines. Olivia Neutron-Bomb is one of the Imperial Army's highly skilled FRTs. Like all FRTs, she is equipped with a heavy automatic pistol, a light back-up pistol and several concealed blades. Her customised support pack is equipped with an auto-grenade dispenser and lightweight auxiliary servo arm alongside the more usual life-support mechanisms, supplies, spare ammunition and medi-pak.
Olivia's particular speciality is removal of key enemy individuals - competent officers, clever strategists, charismatic talisman troopers or innovative battlefield engineers. By eliminating such individuals, enemy morale and efficiency is greatly reduced. Olivia's trademark is to decapitate the target and bring back the bloody head as proof of a successfully completed mission.

Tuesday 1 August 2017

BOYL 2017 (Part 3) - Sunday Gaming

This is the third and final overview of my weekend at the Bring Out Your Lead event at Foundry. After a packed Saturday, I'd left Sunday completely unplanned to allow for socialising and perhaps a pick-up game. In the event, I ended up playing in a superb multi-player game of Rogue Trader with some of the guys from the Friday gaming, plus Alex from Leadballony and Aiden from Warfactory.
We worked on the principle of 'put what you have down on the table', which lead to a motley crew of Space Pirates and mercenaries teaming up with underhive scum, Hrud and orks with a huge walker. Opposing these villainous types were two factions of Imperial Guard, supported by a squad of Adeptus Arbites, an Imperial gunship and two squads of Eldar.
Setting up the table.

BOYL 2017 (Part 2) - Saturday Gaming

Very possibly you'll already seen some of the excellent BOYL 2017 coverage elsewhere on the net (try Crucium Giger or Dear Tony Blair or Shadowkings), but it only seems right and proper that I give an overview of my weekend. After a Friday of fun at Warhammer World, I arrived with Erasmus Papafakis ready for gaming.



First order of the day was to see how Olivia had cast. Who's Olivia? Olivia is the commemorative event figure, sculpted by John Pickford for the event, and cast by Foundry. I took on the task of organising the sculpting and liaising with John.

BOYL 2017 (Part 1) - Shadow War: Armageddon at Warhammer World

With what now seems like it's a tradition, myself and a group of fellow gamers headed to Warhammer World on Friday just past as an appetiser to the annual Oldhammer event 'Bring Out Your Lead', hosted by Wargames Foundry in Newark.

The Friday meetup at Warhammer World provides us with a different vibe, an opportunity to play some subtly different games, and a chance to meet with Nottingham-based folks who aren't able to make it to the main event over the weekend.

Antipixi refreshes himself of the rules.

Tuesday 25 July 2017

All the Short Men - Ratling Kill Team (Part 2)

You may have read my previous post about the inception of a new, shorter statured Kill Team.

The subject of Part 1.

I'll be using the troopers in support of an Inquisitor and the closest members of his retinue. And here they are!

Ordo Xenos Inquisitor Denjon Meister and his retinue.

All the Short Men - Ratling Kill Team (Part 1)

I guess it was about 6 weeks or so ago when I had the idea. And this was the model that started it all:

'Panadol', sci-fi Halfling psyker from Four A Miniatures.

I'd picked up this lovely sculpt of a sci-fi Halfling psyker sculpted by Paul Muller on a whim. Then I started musing about making a little Kill Team to accompany her - after all, I had half a dozen or so Citadel ratlings that would fit the bill. And then I decided it would be fun to try and make this Kill Team in time for a pre-arranged gaming session of Shadow War: Armageddon with some buddies. Notwithstanding other hobby commitments, the relatively compact timeframe, and the desire to convert and paint a brand new set of figures, I launched into the project with abandon!

Monday 24 July 2017

Grox Herding - Animal Husbandry in the 41st Millennium

The humble grox is a staple touchstone of 'normal' life in the 41st millennium. You'll often see references in background text and novels (Dan Abnett regularly refers to juicy grox steaks). First referenced in the Rogue Trader rulebook, groxen are an excellent inclusion to any farm-based 40k game!

Tuesday 27 June 2017

Choose Your Own Adventurers #4: Short Jern Silvo, Ratling Cook

What a fine mix of reprobates we've seen to date in the 'Choose Your Own Adventurers' project. I urge you to check out Captain Paradox Zeeman by Curis, and Garnier Wangst, Eldar trader by cheetor.

My second contribution is a shorter, nastier piece of work. And that pretty much sums up a ratling cook - a greasy low-life responsible for acquiring supplies needed to feed his crew. I suspect those supplies may not always be of the highest quality!


Tuesday 20 June 2017

The Listener of Whispers and Helsreach Grows

Without wanting to sound like I'm repeating myself, it's been a little while since I last added to my Astropathic Choir. So I pulled a suitable figure out and daubed some paint to swell the number of choristers.

Astropath Varees holds the title of Listener of Whispers. It is he who seeks out the quiet and the hidden - the secret messages that are transmitted faintly and furtively. Not for him are the mundane and strong signal of corporate entities, inter-planetary political announcements or universal broadcasts. Varees listens to subtler transmissions. Coded tense negotiating positions. Highly sensitive notifications of high ranking births, marriages and deaths. Perhaps subterfuge and espionage. He hears much and speaks little. For this, he is well rewarded by grateful, yet anonymous clients.


Tuesday 13 June 2017

WIP Helsreach Building

I singularly failed to do any painting over the last few days, so instead I thought I'd share a WIP building I'm working on for my Logan's World / Helsreach-esque fringe world setting.

The building is a 28mm scale Casbah from Black Hat Miniatures Exotic Adventures range. The building is a great looking collection of interesting angles - here's it is unpainted:

Tuesday 6 June 2017

Adding Height - Comms Arrays

The trouble with a lot of wargames terrain is that it tends to be fairly uniform in height. Buildings by and large are one or two storeys. Most scatter terrain is no taller than a 28mm miniature. I fancied adding some taller elements to my terrain collection, and spent a bit of time looking at model mobile phone masts.

I stumbled on this pair of N Gauge model railway scenic phone masts on ebay. They were a little short for my needs, but happily as they're 3D printed to order, the seller was happy to increase the height and do a custom order for me.

Tuesday 30 May 2017

Choose Your Own Adventurers - Episode 1: Inquisitor Clousseau

"Do you fancy painting a specific set of the weird spacemen that we have been drooling over for quarter of a century?" Cheetor said to Curis and myself. "As a group paint along?"

But which weird spacemen? Why the late 1980s Citadel Rogue Trader Adventurers range of course.

The iconic full-colour advert for the RT Adventurers range.

Monday 22 May 2017

Shadow War: Armageddon - Completed Kill Team

This Wednesday evening sees the start of my gaming group's Shadow War: Armageddon campaign. With that in mind I've finished the 9 models required for my starting Kill Team, with an additional Guardsmen to bring me up to full strength. And a right dirty-looking crew of scumbags they are too!

Kill Team Quinspirios Alpha - the 'Ripperjacks'

Tuesday 16 May 2017

Shadow War: Armageddon - New Recruits

With just over a week to go to the start of a new Shadow War: Armageddon campaign, it's high time I got the remaining figures painted up. Over the last week I've painted an additional 3 Guardsmen, bringing my total to 8. I need to paint one more (the flamer) to have my starting Kill Team ready, and I plan a 10th member shortly afterwards.
Kill Team Alpha-Curzon deploy from their insertion point.