Sunday 24 February 2013

When you wish upon a star...

It doesn't matter who you are - 'cos that limited edition scenario mini will still be rarer than rocking horse poo and it'll all end up in divorce if the wife ever finds out how you much you paid for it should you actually win it...

Actually quite a few of my wishes have come true from my original Top Ten Citadel Minis Wish List (and my marriage seems to have survived) - so much so that I thought an update was warranted.

Lets see what we've got:

10 - Dragon Masters - Got the dragon but need the riders and horse that came in the original box.

9 - Elven Attack Chariot - Got and currenly in the dettol bath.

8 - Goblobber - Still on the look out.

7 - Citadel Giant - Skarsnik has cornered the market here and snaffled them all up ; )

6 - Fimir - I have one, who will be appearing in my very mixed up Beastman/Chaotics regiment. alongside Beastmen, Mutants, Snakemen and other assorted weirdos.

5 - Villagers and Townsfolk - ongoing, as there's a few of them!

4 - Zombie Dragon - Got! Currently having a dettol bath...

3 - Orc's Drift Characters - Just got my hands on the Druid Snart, courtesy of Bridgend Steve, so he'll need painting up before the Oldhammer weekend at Foundry. The seldom seen Mayor Leofwine unfortunately slipped through my fingers, although at £34 I wasn't too upset! Still that price will make Steve very happy I'm sure!

2 - Slann Wizard and Bearers - Got!

1 - Hobgoblin on Temple Dog - Agh, just missed one with an Oriental Hero as rider for £16. Curses!

So what will the new list look like?

Well, I'm going to shuffle a few things around and drop a few things as they're a tad unrealistic and if I did go for them would pull much needed resources away from my current and future projects. Items like the villagers and Knightmare legion come up on ebay regularly and I figure I'll just pick them up as and when they're going cheap (fimir?!).

So it now looks like this -

10 - The Horse rider (any of the variants really) from the Dragon Masters set!

9 - Goblobber - I'm idly collecting a small Dwarf force as an Allied contingent, and I love the mini!

8 - Notlob's Orc Artillery - Because you can't have enough chucky/throwy things in your Orc army - and I've got most of the other Orc and Goblin artillery!

On the subject of Orc artillery, I really want to find the Orc with his hands by his sides to complete my Monstrous Orc War Machine set

7 - Mudat's Mercenary Half Orc Maniacs - specifically Mudat, his champion and his musician. I have the standard and a bunch of troopers, although a few more of them wouldn't hurt! These chaps will be part of the Half Orc contingent for the massive Orc, Hobgoblin and Goblin horde I have been hoarding for a while..

6 - The Dragon Ogre - similar reason to the Hydra.

5 -  C29 Hydra - My Chaotic host needs some more Reptilian action to go with the Hippogriff, Manticore, Marauder Hydra and Marauder Death Chicken, erm, I mean Cockatrice I've got already.

4 - Looking back at my extended list I realise I have also gathered enough Troglodytes for the Lustrian project, so instead I'll be gunning for Huris, the Champion from Karnac's Lizardmen Raiders to complete the set. I know the background has them based in the Caverns of the Old World but what the hey!

3 - Huscarl from the Kremlo scenario. It'd be great to have the complete set by the time I play through my Lustrian campaign. (Got him now!)

2 - Hobgoblin on Temple Dog - Still need a suitable general for the Hobyar Horde I have stored away in boxes, waiting to set the East ablaze... Oh and I love the mini!

1 -  Orc's Drift Characters in no particular order - yep its another itch I've just got to scratch! Be nice to do it before the Oldhammer Event at Foundry this summer...

Hagar Sheol

Osrim Chardz

Mayor Leofwine

although I do own this Half Elf adventurer who might end up getting converted - or is that cheating?!

King Fyar and his Wyvern (Got him now!)

The villagers I could possibly live without although if these fellows and fellow-esses ever turn up I'll be sure to try and nab them

Mayhem - Crossing Over Harrison's Ford...

Time for a long overdue update on the progress of Shreevan Zeegal's merciless assault on Harrison's Ford. Can Beulenegger and his Griffin escape the Giant's clutches? Will Norress live up to his terrifying reputation?

Read on dear reader...

Turn 5
Von Damne's Dependables
CP's rolled - 7

Beulenegger fought to control his stricken mount as it reared backwards from the Giants terrible blow. He glanced upwards at the huge creature, growling under his breath,

"You're one ugly mo..."

However, he didn't have time to finish as the tree trunk the brute was using as a weapon swept downwards again. Beulenegger kicked and wrestled with Lavister's reins in a last ditch attempt to escape,

"Get to the river... Do it.... Do it now!"

With a final wrench, the wounded Griffin finally got the message and struggled into the air. Beulenegger, not content with retreating, spied the struggle in the river between Noress' Horsemen and the Skeleton cavalry.

Saturday 23 February 2013

Lustrian Loot!

I don't often go for "Look what I just got!" type posts but I couldn't resist this time!

Friday 22 February 2013

An empty stream, a great silence, an impenetrable forest.

I'm glad I mentioned Josep Conrad's Heart of Darkness in my last post - its definitely got the brain going again in terms of how I'm going to piece together the narrative strands of the Magnificent Sven's further adventures. Cheers Mouse for those little snippets you shared in your comment by the way!

I had thought about originally using Heart of Darkness and by extension Apocalypse Now as a narrative framework from which to hang the various scenarios. The journey down the river in the Volksvagn, Sven's alcohol powered boat, would take the characters from encounter to encounter, culminating in the discovery of the Shrine of Rigg.  However, the source material seems a little dark in comparison to the light hearted tone I usually go for. This shouldn't be a massive problem as I'll be cherry picking various tropes and encounters from the two stories to use in my campaign and twisting them to my own ends. 

Having the characters depart on their boat would mean a slight re-write of the first scenario I came up with which sees the victorious Svenn and his companions turfed out of Vastervik, having outstayed their welcome somewhat. With the (initially false) promise of gold and the idea of seeking out the Shrine of Rigg seeded in our hero's mind, I think I've just about covered the Hungry Jungle trope in that scenario! Although I have been thinking along the lines of making the plant life a little more of a presence. Not only in the sense of plants that may physically attack the characters but also the psychological effects the jungle has, as seen in Hearts of Darkness. I need to flesh the idea out a bit more but possibly some kind of roll against WP with a list of nasty psychological effects on a  The horror... the horror table of results should the test be failed. When and how often the test needs to be made will need some thought - after unpleasant encounters with jungle flora/fauna, 25% casualties received, rank and file troops straying too far from their leader's influence?

On a more practical note, all of this would also mean I would need to build the Volksvagn and some larger river sections to accommodate its passage! A step too far on top of building the Shrine of Rigg...?!

One way of avoiding the re-write might be having the good folk of Vastervik complete their revenge on Sven and his drunken band by setting the Volksvagn adrift. It could then be discovered by Sven, run aground and in need of repairs and something to distil for fuel later on. Hmm, I have the basis of another scenario methinks! The heroes have to hold out against a Slann/Lizardman/Amazon attack while Sven and Juggo attempt to make the necessary repairs to escape.

I may save the hunt for Mangoes or a similar fruit (say the extremely sugary and potent Cabardi fruit!) to be distilled into alcohol for the boat's fuel tanks for another scenario. I wonder what I might call it...

Other ideas would be to include a Kurtz type character for Sven to bump into. Perhaps a Norseman gone mad, who's set himself up as the God King of a tribe of Pygmies (the only Lustrian race I haven't included so far). I have this chap in the lead pile who might be good in the role -

I also need to shoe horn the Bollrbrjótr in somewhere and somehow - perhaps as the owners of the big cats that disrupt the search for Cabardi fruit.

I can't remember whether I've shared details of the final showdown on this blog or not. At the risk of repeating myself here they are again. 

Sven and his band finally navigate their way to Lake Lokka and find the Shrine of Rigg on its shore. They enter and search for gold, whilst avoiding the Koka Kalim guards. Meanwhile outside Gurgyll Greenwake arrives with his Slann rengades and Lizardman levies, hot in pursuit of Sven and thirsting for revenge for the humiliation he suffered at Vastrervik. Of course the Amazons are not happy at the presence of Slann at their most holy of sites and seek to fight them off. I may even have a Bretonnian expedition turn up in search of that most exquisite of delicacies - frogs' legs!

That should be enough action in and around the Shrine to keep a few players very busy indeed.

Final thought - here's a great excerpt from Heart of Darkness describing Kurtz' native mistress, who seems to hold some kind of power over him. It'd make a great description for the Amazons of Lustria too I think.

And from right to left along the lighted shore moved a wild and gorgeous apparition of a woman. She walked with measured steps, draped in striped and fringed cloths, treading the earth proudly, with a slight jingle and flash of barbarous ornaments. She carried her head high; her hair was done in the shape of a helmet; she had brass leggings to the knee, brass wire gauntlets to the elbow, a crimson spot on her tawny cheek, innumerable necklaces of glass beads on her neck; bizarre things, charms, gifts of witchmen, that hung about her, glittered and trembled at every step. She must have had the value of several elephant tusks upon her. She was savage and superb, wild-eyed and magnificent; there was something ominous and stately in her deliberate progress. And in the hush that had fallen suddenly upon the whole sorrowful land, the immense wilderness, the colossal body of the fecund and mysterious life seemed to look at her, pensive, as though it had been looking at the image of its own tenebrous and passionate soul.

Wednesday 20 February 2013

A rioting invasion of soundless life...

Sorry - getting all literary again! This is a quote from one of my all time favourite books - Conrad's Heart of Darkness. In it the jungle is often personnified and described in such a way as to make it a powerful and active agent within the book -

The great wall of vegetation, an exuberant and entangled mass of trunks, branches, leaves, boughs, festoons, motionless in the moonlight, was like a rioting invasion of soundless life, a rolling wave of plants, piled up, crested, ready to topple over the creek, to sweep every little man of us out of his little existence.

So what's all this got to do with little men? Well I've felt for a while that my lack of jungle scenery needs sorting out - the deciduous trees and bushs I've got will no doubt be used but on their own they're not very jungly. 

A trip to Pets at Home the other day for dog food provided me with the perfect excuse to finally raid their Fish tank section! I'm not sure if this stuff is available cheaper elsewhere but £11 netted me this bunch of foliage that will be chopped up into smaller scenic bases - pictured here with some ferns and palms I picked up at Recon from a company called Minibits

However, the star buy was this tank decorat

Tuesday 19 February 2013

Depraved Violence!

Am I talking about the disgusting antics regularly seen on and off the pitch in Premiership Football games? 

Nope - I'm talking Blood Bowl! 

Don't worry - I haven't forgotten about Mayhem - next few turns coming up soon once I've sorted the pics out.

In fact having moaned a bit about the lack of gaming last year, things are definitely looking up this year. Mayhem is keeping me busy at the mo (albeit solo gaming) and the Oldhammer Day at Foundry will be two days of gaming heaven. 

Added to this an old pal of mine has started a new blog, The Second Founding, and challenged me to a game of Blood Bowl at the end of March. We've enjoyed a few games of 40K (I forget which edition - 5th?) using his Dark Templars and Imperial Guard - unlucky last time mate! You've got to love the effect massed Lascannons have on a line of Space Marines forced into an advance over open ground towards a central objective!

He's posted up pics of his rather nice looking Human team, the Golden Boars, and rumour has it that Griff Oberwald and the Mighty Zug have been signed up as star players.

Anyway you may remember these chaps I painted up ages ago for the Lead Painters League - my pub team, The Slann in Spacers

Obviously short of a few team members! 

However, I thought it'd be a bit dull having Humans V. Humans - with a few friends along to help out. So I decided to take the plunge and paint up one of the other teams languishing in the paint queue. But who to choose - Dark Elves or Orcs? 

Well obviously I chose the Dark Elves, mainly because that's the team I've used the most on Blood Bowl Legendary Edition and also because I haven't really painted any Dark Elves before.

Here they are with their base coats on

and the first wave of highlights/washes

I'm hoping the armour will turn out like jade and the dark blue will probably get a bit lighter yet. I've also tried to go for a really pale and unhealthy - subterranean in fact! - skin tone. Not sure whether its gone a little too pasty and grey? 

As you can see the team is really set up for Second Edition Blood Bowl with all the Catchers, Throwers and Kicker. We will be playing the latest version of course so that means I'll have to recruit some Witch Elves and Assassins and "demote" my catchers to Linemen and promote Kickers/Throwers to Runners. 

Here's a few possibilities for the Witch Elves and Assassin (never understood why any self respecting assassin would go around in that hood and cloak that just screams out "I'm up to no good - probably a thief or assassin or some such ne'er-do-well!"), along with a Wizard for some sideline fun!

I should get this lot finished for the end of March, along with painting up the 2nd ed. Astrogranite pitch they're stod on. I'll be sure to take some pics and attempt some kind of post-match report here once we've played.

Oldhammer Day 2013

In case you hadn't heard, what with all the buzz from the folks currently rolling up and assembling their RoC Slaaneshi and Khornate warbands, but we're having a grand couple of days out down at the Wargames Foundry in Nottingham for the first ever Oldhammer extravaganza, 31st August to 1st September!

Gaj from Warhammer for Adults has toiled ceaselessly to bring this about, aided and abetted by various other Oldhammerers. Bryan and Marcus Ansell of Wargames Foundry have been more than accommodating in having us - in fact they have been absolute legends in supporting us so massive thanks to them too.

So what might be on offer so far you lucky people?

  • An amazing venue in the heartland of miniature wargaming
  • Two whole days of Oldhammer goodness
  • Games galore - WFB 3rd ed. participation games - bring your own army, 25th anniversary RoC warband showdown and yours truly will be bringing Orc's Drift
  • Bring and buy Old Lead sale and Foundry's original Citadel ranges available to buy
  • Art and miniatures from Bryan Ansell's own collection on display
  • Licensed bar! ...oh and food!
The details are still being fleshed out so please feel free to drop by the Blood forum to keep up to date of developments. We'reworking towards keeping the event a free one but knowing what kind of numbers we're dealing with would be handy. To this effect a booking system is being sorted out so keep your eyes peeled, your better halves sweet and the weekend of the 31st August to 1st Septemeber free!

Oldhammer - Music to die for...

Challenge accepted Erny!

Although I don't have a Chaos warband (yet!) and so no eternally damned champion who's entrance on battle needs a suitably grandiose fanfare here's my choice anyway - which actually fits quite well with my contribution to the Oldhammer Day - hordes of Orcs bearing down on the doomed village of Orc's Drift -more of which shortly.

Were I to chose an Iron Maiden track (good choice of band Erny!) it'd have to be this...

However, Maiden's been done and I'm not big on the whole Thrash metal thing.

So how about a bit of British Blues/Prog Rock in the form of the Groundhogs -

Wednesday 13 February 2013

Mayhem - Battle for Harrison's Ford

Well  I was lacking a name for the battle so there it is - might shed some light on the names I've picked for the characters too! Now I just have to weave in some references to 80's action movies as suitable situations arise from the game...

Apologies for the delay by the way - been fighting off some horrible Outer Mongolian Death Flu - well flu at any rate!

Turn 2
Von Damne's Dependables
CP's rolled - 8

Sunday 10 February 2013

Another brick in the wall...

Just a quick update to show a little progress on the shrine in case you'd thought I'd forgotten about it or realised the insanity of the whole project and washed my hands of the whole thing!

I got a few castings done last week, although painting all that 10mm goodness distracted me a little. That and I'm sure the neighbours are beginning to wonder what all the banging is... (me knocking the airbubbles out of the molds on my improvised worksurface - a piece of board resting on pieces of sponge taped to the bottom of it.)

Anyway here's the pics

Saturday 9 February 2013

Mayhem - the story so far and deployment

So on to deployment and a bit of background.

The first reports through from the Northern frontier with Ostland had been sketchy at first. Horrific stories of monstrous invaders and terrible massacres. Then a name began to filter through the tall tales and stories of woe borne back by the few refugees to survive - Shreevan Zeegal. A name not heard in these parts for many a year. A name not to be spoken lightly. Or even out loud...

As the  evil army advanced further into the more civilised areas of Hochland, it became apparent exactly what its inhabitants faced. Zeegal had formed an unholy alliance of chaotics and undead. His ranks were swelled by those who had fallen to him in battle and those creatures who flocked to his banner and the promise of slaughter. Foremost among them, Dulf Lundgrin, Half Orc chieftain with his warriors and trolls. 

Their incursion was not to go unpunished however. Marching with all haste to meet the threat was Count Johan Von Damne at the head of his hastily mobilised army. Along with the column of state troopers, sweating under the load of their halberds and arquebus, came allies in the form of a proud company of Elf spearmen and the more barbarous fellowship of Dwarf troll slayers, roused from their mountain fastnesses, eager to find a heroic death. The unmistakable whiff of black powder signalled the presence of Dwarf thunderers also come down from the mountains to contain the threat before it grew too large. 

As Bluch Norress and his famed lancers scouted ahead of the main column, Arkneld Beulenegger soared above them on his magnificent Griffin mount, spying out the approach of the enemy. With the intelligence provided by him, Von Damne had formulated a plan. Zeegal's army had to cross the river Lachtbeek at a large ford not far from the town f Eichewuldchen. If the Count could reach the crossing first and prepare his defences they had a chance of forcing the chaotic horde into a bottle neck and destroying them in detail. If they got there first...

 As the two opposing generals both have D8 leadership I rolled to see who chose to set up first. Von Damne won the roll and elected to deploy and move first.

On the right the various units of black powder missile troops formed up, looking to advance forwards and defend the ford. Behind them, Beulenegger prepares his monstrous mount to fly ahead the main army  to disrupt the enemy advance.

Wednesday 6 February 2013

Masters of Mayhem...

There ended up being a little arms race in getting these two armies ready - I had overlooked the fact that I had 3 units of Human Lancers for the Good Guys and that the second unit of Elf spearmen that I was going to paint up needed stripping. This meant that having added a unit of Troll Slayers and adding in the cost of the third unit of Lancers (which also meant I could upgrade one unit up to an elite for having three or more of one troop type in the army!) that the Bad Guys were looking a little outnumbered. 

Normally I wouldn't be too bothered but as this was a first play through and I wanted to try out as many combinations of troop types out as I could I decided to level the playing field by adding two packs of Hounds to the baddies - should be a good counter to the enemy cavalry looking at their stats and the Pack Hunter ability - more of which later.

So as promised - the Bad Guys!

Evil General
Cavalry with heavy armour, shield and lance
Leadership D8
M - D8
CQ - D8
Cost 23 crowns

2 Packs of Chaos Hounds
M - D8
CQ D12
Pack Hunters

2 units of Skeleton Horsemen
Cavalry with lance, heavy armour and shields
M - D8
CQ - D20
Cost 13 crowns each + 2 crowns for standard

2 units of Skeleton Archers
Infantry with longbows
M - D6
CQ - D20
Cost 15 crowns each

2 Units of Half Orcs
Infantry with swords and shields
M - D6
CQ - D12
Cost - 5 crowns each + 2 crowns for standard + 6 crowns for Hero

2 units of Trolls
M - D6
CQ - D12
Fear and Beat Back (Free)
Cost 10 crowns each

M D8
CQ D10
Cost 35 crowns

Total - 178 Crowns

 Next up - the table layout, deployment and the scenario...

Tuesday 5 February 2013

Causing Mayhem!

Well as you know I am armpits deep in Crystacal R and Hirst Arts blocks but I've still found time for a distraction or two!

I'll share some WIP pics of Andy's latest release of 4A goblins, sculpted by Kev Adams in a later post - along with their new ride...

However, that little distraction has been interrupted by another (in some ways littler - 10mm) distraction. Some of you may remember Brent Spivey's (AKA VoodooInk) excellent 28mm skirmish game, Havoc, that I reviewed a while back. Well he's only gone and released another great set of fantasy rules called Mayhem through Bombshell Games.

I was particularly happy to hear he was focussing on the smaller scales of 10/15mm this time as I've been busy hoovering up Warmaster stuff in preparation for playing some bigger games of Warhammer.

Anyway, I plan to get a turn played and reported each day or two and posted up here, along with some analysis of the mechanics of the game - first read through of the Mayhem rules was most interesting and my head is already buzzing with many a tactical consideration...

First job though is to introduce the two armies. First up is the Goodies!

Army building is easy and you can really reflect the nature of the troops with a nice choice of stats from Movement, Combat Quality, equipment and various skills and attributes - more of which later. Plus using Gold Crowns instead of points is a fun way of splashing the cash!


Noble General
Human Cavalry with heavy armour, lance and shield
Leadership D8
M - D8
CQ - D8
Cost 18 crowns

3 units of Lancers
Human Cavalry with shields and lances
M - D8
CQ - D12
(1 unit is an Elite – free Fearless ability)
Cost 11 crowns each

2 units of Halberdiers
Human Infantry with Spears
M - d6
CQ - d12
Standard and Musician
Cost - 7 crowns each + 3 crowns for standard & musician

1 unit of Hand Gunners
Human Infantry with rifles
M - d6
CQ D12
Cost 16 crowns

2 units of Dwarf Thunderers
Infantry with rifles
M - D4
CQ - D10
Cost - 16 crowns each

Hero on Griffin
Flyer with lance, heavy armour and shield
M - D10
CQ - D8
Cost 29 crowns

1 unit of Elf Spearmen
Infantry with heavy armour, shields and spears
M - D6
CQ - D10
Ranked Fighting
Cost 12 crowns + 3 crowns for standard and musician

1 unit of Dwarf Trollslayers
Infantry with axes
M – D4
CQ – D10
Cost – 12 crowns

Total - 172 Crowns

I'll talk more about what all the different die mean in terms of Movement (M) and Combat Quality (CQ) next  time!

The Baddies will be up later tonight - once I've finished off a pack of Chaos hounds...