Thursday, 29 September 2016

A Tale of Four Gamers: Nerves of Lead

The 1st of September ushered in one of the many challenges I have taken up this year in the form of the familiar Tale of Four Gamers. Thanks to Ashley at Little Lead People who, inspired by the hi-jinks of Messrs Warlord Paul, Orlygg, Chico and Steve at BOYL 2016, suggested we have also have a go at the challenge.  

I gather the Warlord Paul, Orlygg, Steve and Chico are repeating the success of their Tale of Four Gamers - this time with Mordheim and only one miniature a month in their Tale of Four Gamers: City of Lead. To differentiate ourselves from our esteemed other four gamers, we're calling our challenge   Tale of Four Gamers: Nerves of Lead. Clear as mud I'm sure! Anyhow the upshot of it all is that between now and BOYL 2017 we have to paint up 150 points worth of troops each month and either blog about them or post them on facebook. Oh and we get to fight each others' armies at BOYL 2017 as well!

We've decided to stick with Warhammer Fantasy Battle 3rd ed. and I'm looking forward to seeing my fellow gamers' armies taking shape. I've picked Dark Elves, Ashley has succumbed to the lure of Undeath, Matthew is taking to the field with Orcs and Adam stands alone for the forces of good with his Wood Elves. 

So why Dark Elves? I've never really had much to do with Elves of any kind really other than those required for the Orc's Drift scenarios. The High Elves were a bit goody-two-shoes for me and Wood Elves are really just a bunch of tree-huggers aren't they? Mind you I do have a large tub full of them to paint up another time...

I do, however, remember a rather nice looking Dark Elf army that got a great article in WD144 that detailed the history of the Dark Elves and the selection behind the army. Check out Jaeckel's blog post for a more in depth look.

Then there were all the strangely alluring Marauder Dark Elf minis that were advertised back in the day!

I always loved the shape of the swords and shields - giving a Dark Elf army a very distinctive yet cohesive look.

And of course, who could choose any other army after seeing this inspirational video!

I have two thorny questions to answer first - What am I going to paint first and what colour am I going to paint it?

In terms of colour schemes, I was rather taken with the metallics and greens Kent Martin used in his army featured in WD144 - something that influenced my painting of my Dark Elf Bloodbowl team the Wasteland Wanderers and something I shall be emulating with my Dark Elf army.

As for what I'm going to paint first - I've decided on something generic that I can establish my colour scheme with. My unit of 12 Dark Elf warriors takes me a little over the necessary 150 points a month we need to get done, which should leave me with some leeway to paint up the cheaper unit of 10 Crossbows in October - or possibly a hero or wizard if I'm running short on time!

So with barely a day of September left I can proudly present my first ever unit of Dark Elves.

Hopefully I have captured something of the night with the colour scheme as well as paying homage to some of the more garish paint jobs on the Marauder miniatures. Dark Elves should be the embodiment of evil and bad taste - at least in my mind anyway!

I was very pleased to find I had some of the warriors and the champion from the Marauder Dark Elf regiment along with some of those excellent plastic shields - they were a doddle to paint up with metallics and ink washes.

The champion received a little eyeliner to differentiate him from the rank and file and the standard bearer was a simple conversion of one of the warriors with some newfangled Dark Elf plastic bits for the banner. The flame design is a little unimaginative but hey - I was running out of time!

The last time I commanded Dark Elves on the field of battle was in a transatlantic game hosted and games mastered by Dreamfish. I faced off with an uneasy alliance of Dark Elves and Orcs against Airbornegrove's Dwarf command in the Bridge over the River Chai. However, my key unit of Dark Elf warriors got flattened very early on with a horribly accurate shot from a Dwarven Goblobber! Suffice to say I shall be extremely wary of any enemy artillery at our game at next year's BOYL!

If I've done my maths correctly I make it that these 11 Dark Elf Warriors (including standard bearer) equipped with light armour, shields and hand weapons and led by a level 5 Hero with light armour, shield and dual hand weapons come to 184 points - just over the target 150 points per month.

We shall what is in store for next month as there's a few other bits that are long overdue getting finished. I may have time for another unit or I may give myself some breathing room and paint up a character...


  1. Wonderful mate, just plain wonderful :) I love 3rd Ed Dark Elves and I'll be painting up all mine for BOYL17 as well for Big game so I'll be watching this closely :)

    1. Cheers buddy - was very tempted to get stuck in with my Dark Elves in that game as well but alas I have too many other games I want to play as well!

      Look forward to seeing some Chico style Dark Elves!

  2. Arrgh I need to get mine in quick for tomorrow! Lovely paint jobs and in particular loving the banner Steve. Btw I'm undead now - I had too many not to choose 'em!

    1. Thanks Ashley - it came out ok considering how much thought went in to it! I should probably figure out some of the background for my army and think up some names for my characters while I'm at it!

      Undead you say - just a quick drybrush and some ink washes before the end of September then! ;)

  3. That article and the 1000pt Dark Elf army are the basis for my own challenge for the year (which I've yet to get started). So I'll follow this with interest. Always loved the Marauder Dark Elves and Kent's take on them in particular. You've done a great job, they look ace!

  4. They are a really great looking set of models. The look of Dark Elves had changed by the time I got into Warhammer; such a pity motifs like the round shields and concave swords were lost later on. Good luck with your challenge, you're off to a cracking start!

  5. Really great work on the Dark Elves! The video is absolutely hilarious!!!!
    Thanks for sharing