Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Forge World Dreadnought

To All,
Here is a quick picture on the progress I've made on the Forge World Dreadnought.
I believe the front part is supposed to carved stone so I attempted to make it look like it.

The Stout Smurf

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Painting the Jawaballs bases to look like stone.

To All,

First a quick note; When I paint terrain I like to use Americana acrylics from DecoArt. I have used them on various terrain pieces and figures and find it to be very durable and the colors are very, very consistent from bottle to bottle.

The 60mm base for the dreadnought is made from black resin so I didn't do anything to it besides soak and scrub it. The 25mm bases are regular resin so after I soaked and scrubbed them I primed them black.

I first painted Dark Chocolate on all of parts of the base. The dark chocolate on the non-stone parts of the base will be covered by flocking so at this point I'm not too concerned about those areas. They will be flocked and set after the figure has been put on the base. In this picture the paint is still wet - it does not dry that shiny.

The next step is to dry brush the Americana color Coco on the stone sections leaving the "dirt" sections alone.

Next I applied Citadel Gryphonne Sepia wash to enhance the dry brushing/highlighting.

And then a final dry brush of Desert Sand to bring out the highest ridges on the stone to add depth.

I chose this color for the stone because I'm planning ahead for my "fancy" display board. I'm thinking a raised alter area with stone steps cascading down to the vehicles on the bottom. Still in the planning stages though.

I will post after the colonial how the black bases did verses the traditional white/tan resin. I'll snap some pics and let you be the judge.

The Stout Smurf

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Gate of Infinity - out of combat?

To all,

At TempleCon my Librarian had the Psychic Powers  the Avenger and Null Zone. Null Zone worked great while the Avenger was OK, but not as devastating as I imagined it to be. For The Colonial I'm switching from The Avenger to The Gate of Infinity. I have two questions about the power:

1) When traveling by himself does the Librarian scatter when "coming out of the gate/warp."

and of course the big one:

2) Can the Librarian (and the unit he is with) use the Gate of Infinity to teleport out of combat?

The Rule:
"This power is used at the beginning of the Librarian's Movement phase. The Librarian, and any unit he is with, are removed from the tabletop and immediatly placed back together anywhere within 24" using the deep strike rules. If the Librarian travels alone, there is a chance something will go wrong.If the deep strike attempt scatters and a double is rolled, one member of the unit, chosen by the controlling player, is claimed by the Warp and removed as a casualty (the survivors scatter normally)."
Page 57 of the Space Marine Codex

Need to know before the Colonial on the 8th.

The Stout Smurf

Army Painter - Continued

To All,
My son, who has been coming to wargaming conventions and helping me run games for three years, wants to learn how to play 40K. We decide that he should paint his own army and, because I'm just learning how to play, learn to play Space Marines.

I tell him to look through Codex Chapters and pick something he thinks is cool but thinks he can paint on his own. He selects the Doom Legion.(Likes the skull - only one with a jawbone (I don't know either))

I want to make it as simple for him as possible but still have an army he can be proud of.  This is what I came up with:

1) Black Reach marines from ebay.
2) Prime figures with Army Painter Platemail Metal.(I primed them)
3) Fill in shoulder pads and gun with Black
4) Snot Green on the trim of shoulder pad, chest eagle, and vents on backpack. Plus any other raised eagle or skull.
5) Blood red and bleached bone on purity seal.
6) Wash entire figure with Badab Black. The wash fills in all the crevices on the metal and the green. 
7) Red in Eyes.

This is the pretty sweet result:

(I painted the yellow in the headlights and spotlight. We worked together on the lenses. Teaching and Practicing)

The keys to the entire process are the Army Painter primer and the Badab Black wash.

The Stout Smurf

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Army Painter - You'll be Amazed!

To All,

Army Painter Colour Primers - I'm a fan.

I have been using them since my introduction to these colored primers by Jawaballs on different, non-Games Workshop figures:
The red on the Clurichauns and the green on the Leprechauns is straight out of the can primer without any shading at all.
 The black on these Orangemen is just the primer.

BUT...Here is the genius of Army Painter. The following marines were "painted" by my 12 year-old son using only:
Army Painter Platemail Metal primer
Snot Green
Blood Red
Bleached Bone
Badab Black Wash
Skull White
 More on this tomorrow...

The Stout Smurf

Friday, March 25, 2011

A change in course: peer pressure or sound advice?

In a recent post I discussed how I was going to upgrade a few of the figures in my army for the Colonial GT. I had decided to replace four marines with Forge World marines.

In a conversation with Jawaballs about the direction I’m taking for my army over the next two weeks he disagreed with me (something new?) on what I should prioritize – the five non-upgrade marines or the new dreadnought. All the figures and the dreadnought come from Forge World so it’s not a decision based on “coolness” – they're all pretty bad ass – but how much of an impact the models will have on the different aspects of what I’m trying to achieve as a “tournament player.”

Our conversation focused on two aspects:

     1) How much “tabletop” time will the figures/dred get?
           2) What is going to impact my painting score more?

Tabletop time is a big factor. The five marines will replace the four marines in my non-upgrade five-man unit. That unit’s role in my army is to sit inside the razorback and shoot the vehicle's TL Lascannon at the opponent’s tanks, rhinos, and razorbacks. Thus the figures would only hit the tabletop battlefield if they were forced out of the razorback.  The Dred, on the other hand, is an important part of my “attack down the center”  section of my list. Its role is to follow my Land Raider and then support the Terminators when they charge into melee. So the dreadnought will be on the table the entire game.

As for display purposes you can see that my Ironclad is on the front of my display board and the new Dred will take its place. Plus the model and banner are awesome. The four marines are at the rear on the right and are just four of the twenty five marines I have on my board. ( I am aware that I can reposition the stuff on my display board to put the four figures in toward the front)

All that being said I’m going to spend next week painting up the Dreadnought and then, if I have time,  paint up the marines.


The Stout Smurf

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Bases from Jawaballs!!

To All,

I had my painting rubric from TempleCon and I was going to scan it in and share it with you but I seem to have misplaced it. It will turn up in a couple of days but in the meantime I need to forge ahead.

One of the categories I did poorly on was basing. For all the models and figures in my current army I used the bases that came with them from Games Workshop and glued a flocking mix to it. It is the same mix I used for my display board so for the casual passerby it wasn't obvious but the judging was another matter So that is one area that I'm going to concentrate on to grab some extra points.

I dropped by Jawa's room today to get some of his resin bases .He had three sizes so i helped myself to a "set" of all three.(Thanks buddy!)

 The first set: 25mm textured:

The next set:
40mm textured black resin bases. I asked Jawaballs why black? His response was pretty interesting: during transport oftentimes the edges of his bases get chipped. With the paint chipped away the white resin shows through making the bases look "banged up." With the black resin the chips won't be obvious.

And I had to get a 60mm dreadnought base, also black resin.

I'm going to soak, scrub, prime, and paint these up.

I do not think you have to prime the black bases. I'm going to paint them without priming - i'll let you know how it goes.

The Stout Smurf

Forge World Figures - The Process

To All,

So last night I started to prepare the figures.

To cast resin figures they must first coat the mold with a release agent so the resin doesn't stick to the mold. Some of the release agent might still be on the figure and should be removed. The release agent can cause painted figures to flake, thus ruining the paint you have lovingly and skillfully applied.

So the first step I take with any resin figure or model is to soak in warm soapy water for about an hour then give it a little scrub with a toothbrush.

So I unpacked the marines:
 Plus the Dreadnought and the arms ( I know, wishful thinking):

And gave them a soak and a scrub:

I'm going to let them completely dry overnight. I have made the mistake in the past of being too anxious and trying to prime before the crevices are dried out so I'm going to take my time here.

Today I'm going to see what bases Jawaballs has at school.

The Stout Gnome

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Decision made for me - FORGE WORLD arrives!!

To All,

When I got home there was a package from Forge World sitting on the dinning room table. Let's look at the contents of the box:

Ultramarines Venerable Dreadnought with Mk IV Chainfist and Right Close Combat Arm.

5 Space Marines in MK3 Iron Armour

10 Space Marines in MK5 Heresy Armour (2 five-man packs)

Space Marine Phobos Bolter 8 pack 

Ultramarines Icon pack (I thought the icons would be bigger than they are)

The direction I will be going in for the Colonial GT is:

2) Run the same list but "upgrade" a few of my figures with either better (read - non black reach marines) figures or better paint jobs

This week I plan to paint up the 5 space marines in the MK3 Iron Armor and replace the four marines in this unit:
5 man tactical with razorback with TL lascannon
I  really like the sergeant in this unit. The figure itself is cool - it's an older metal figure - plus I think it is one of my better paint jobs. This is the unit, plus the Razorback, that I will improve on.

The Stout Smurf

Next Stop - The Colonial GT

This is being billed as a more relaxed Grand Tournament which will hopefully be noob friendly! I am Pretty sure I going to be running the same list as I ran at TempleCon. I talked it over with Jawaballs and I basically have three choices for the list/figures:

1) Run the same list and come with the same figures I already have painted up; or

2) Run the same list but "upgrade" a few of my figures with either better (read - non black reach marines) figures or better paint jobs; or

3) Change a couple of elements on the list and paint the corresponding figures/models.

Considering the tournament is sixteen days away and my army list is due in two days I'll have to make a decision tonight.

The Colonial GT is April 8 - 10 at the Westin Hotel at the Forrestal Village in Princeton New Jersey.

The Stout Smurf

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

TempleCon Game 3

Going into game three I wound up vs a Black Templar army played by a fairly experienced opponent. This round's mission was table quarters. He had two vindicators, a Land Raider, a rhino and either a razorback or a predator grouped together in the center of the board. He sent a unit of terminators with assault cannons against my right.

I again used the Ultramarine/Space Marine ability to split my Tactical Squads into Combat Squads and was able to spread out. I put five marines with a Lascannon on the objective on my side to the left. The Land Raider with terminators went straight down the center with Ironclad Dred and a rhino with the remainder of the Tactical Squad inside following behind. I had a five-man no upgrade Tactical Squad in a Razorback w/Lascannons holding the objective on my side on the right.

Turn one I learned that Vindicators shoot large templates that hurt Marines. I started shooting at his vehicles but decided to leave the vindicators alone and shoot at the stuff that had troops inside. Turn two the Legion of the Damned landed where I wanted then to and, again, drew a lot of attention. That allowed the Land Raider to meet up with his and the rhino following behind to zoom off to the objective on his side on the left unmolested. Then both of our Land Raiders unloaded and the brawl was on. He had a dude called "the Emperor's Champion" that is just silly tough. The game ended with me controlling two quarters and "contesting" the other two. So a minor victory but still a victory!

This player was an awesome opponent. He really helped me to understand the game and was more concerned with teaching the game to me than getting a victory. On paper I grabbed a victory but  I have to believe that it was like playing you eight-year-old nephew in checkers for the guy - you don't want to lose but you're going to go easy so as not to be discouraging.

But the victory was a victory on paper and put my at 2-1 in the tournament.  That record, combined with my painting score and coming in 2nd in sportsmanship put me in 6th overall. Now I"m hooked on 40K.

The Good: A good player giving actual real-time game advice. LotD doing some damage!!

The Bad: Black Templar Terminators combined with the Emperor's Champion can kick some tail!

The Stout Smurf

Monday, March 21, 2011

TempleCon Game 2

For game two I drew a newer Tau player. This was a objective mission so I combat squaded my tactical squads and put them in cover for a late game objective grab. I sent the Terminators, Librarian, and Chaplain in the Land Raider right down the center of the board with the Ironclad Dred right behind. After trading shots on the first two turns my Dread was gone but all else was in tact. Then the Legion of the Damned deepstriked to the spot where I wanted them to go. The appearance of the LotD threw the guy off his plan. He had two units of infantry get out of their transports to shoot. 44 shots netted him two LotD casualties. 

I fired the plasma cannon at the closest group (I'm going to learn a lesson here!) and it scattered back onto my unit eliminating two additional LotD Legionnaires leaving only the sergeant. Over the next three turns he single-handedly eliminated those two units. Back to loving the Legion of the Damned!

Meanwhile the Land Raider got popped about eight inches from his main line and the terminators+ charged out and immediately drew the fire from everything he had left. This allowed me to Lascannon and Autocannon the rest of his vehicles and battlesuits off the board. 

I claimed all victory points. The Stout Smurf is now 1-1 heading into the third round.

The Good: I stuck to my plan and got lucky with the LotD which produced a victory. My opponent was so concerned with my Teminators and Legion of the Damned that he didn't even fire on my Tactical Marines. I was able to see how effective doing something to throw a guy off his battle plan can be.

The Bad: Any hope Jawaballs had of convincing me that the Legion of the Damned are not worth the points went out the window.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Taking the 1850 list to TempleCon - Game 1

I brought my list to TempleCon.

In my first game I landed against a tough opponent with a vehicle laden Blood Angels army.   A bad result on my deepstrike roll (and re-roll) allowed my opponent to place the Legion of the Damned where ever he wanted. He put them in a far corner and they didn't get a chance bust open a tank and meet up with the terminators like they were supposed to. The guy was a top tier player and proceeded to blast my army off the table me in just a few turns. But thats ok. I learned a lot in defeat and, according to Jawaballs and the other veteran players there,  would luckily be at the bottom of the heap for round two.

The Good: I learned that the Land Raider/Terminators can last a few turns of heavy fire. I got a real tournament game under my belt.

The Bad: Relying on luck, LoD going where I want, can lead to getting wiped out. Also - I don't have enough ranged fire-power to go against a heavy tank/vehicle list.

The Stout Smurf

Friday, March 18, 2011

1850 Ultramarines List - My First

First of all Jawaballs made me a competitive list drawing on units I liked from the SM Codex. I liked the idea of the terminators with the chaplain being a hard hitting but tough to kill unit, so those were a no-brainer. So the list is designed around the terminators/chaplain in a Land Raider.  We had a bit of a disagreement over the Legion of the Damned - he said too expensive cost-wise verses what they do - but I stuck to my guns and the Legion was in. 

Here is my list:

Chaplain with Plasma Pistol

Librarian with Avenger and Null Zone and Storm Shield

10 man tactical with las canon, flamer and rhino

10 man tactical with rhino, fist, multi melta and melta

5 man tactical with razorback with TL las

Predator with autocannon turret and las sponsons

Ironclad Dread with Heavy flamer

land raider crusader with Extra armor and multi melta

5 assault terminators as pictured

5 Legion of the Damned with Meltagun and Plasma Cannon

According to Jawaballs this is by no means an over the top uber list, but he said I could take it to a tournament and win games with it.  Plus it was straight forward and reduced my tactical options to just a couple. Aim the Land Raider, send it forth, and shoot the crap out of any thing that can destroy it.  Have the Damned meet up the terminators on the other side. Simple!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

How did it come to this?

First some background on me:

I have be involved in wargamming as a hobby for about 15 years. I mainly did historicals until about 6 years ago when I wrote a set of rules titled "Gnome Wars." (That rules set and the miniatures attached to it are available at The design and promotion of Gnome Wars has been the focus all of my hobby time for some years. 

I teach in a middle school and a last year someone mentioned to me that the art teacher also "plays with little men." When I go to talk to the guy I find out he plays 40K. I have obviously heard of GW, Warhammer, and 40K but have never really looked at the models nor have I ever played a game. He shows me his stuff and I'm drawn to how cool the models are and impressed by the paint-jobs. But at the time I'm too wrapped up in Gnome Wars to investigate any further.

This September the art teacher, who I later find out is Jawaballs, and I decide to run an after-school club focusing on the gaming hobby. He starts to teach me 40K and tries to coax me into buying an army and painting it up. I start by painting a few Black Reach marines and get a rhino but cannot see setting aside time for this and a couple of months go by.

Then in January he reveals his plan: Take a total 40k nooby with wargaming experience, and turn him into a tournament contender.  The first tournament would be TempleCon, a mere five weeks away.

I had my work cut out for me!