Tomb Kings Prince Apophas – my first Finecast

I just finished this chappy tonight. I have to say, I’m pleased with the paint job (although not too pleased how the pictures came out). I painted the pumice sand up onto the bottom of the figure, to give the impression that he’s just burst up from beneath the sand (as he does in the game). This was my first foray into the world of Games Workshop’s new Finecast material. It’s a little odd to work with. It’s like working with resin in some respects, and not in others. I think that  once they work out the kinks in their quality control(?) department, it’ll be awesome. The stuff goes together well, and takes paint well. I have heard horror stories that this stuff will melt though, so don’t leave it in your car in the middle of summer…

Anyhoo, onto the mini:

I just realized I need to tidy up the blue wash on that blade a little…

The fact that this dude is made up of swarming bugs appealed to me. He sort of epitomizes the essence of what got me into fantasy gaming when I was younger.

I like the contrasts of the darker blue of the scarab carapaces and the light blue of the tilework on his gear.

 

 

I love the posing, like he’s about to grab some poor bastard before sending their soul to the Usirian depths…

While painting Tomb Kings, I find it helps to listen to these chaps:

Sisters of Battle… What is happening?

Sister Wishlister
Hmmm. Suffice to say, I was deleriously excited when I saw the inside back cover of last months Games Workshop Monthly Release Catalogue White Dwarf and I noticed the little box that declared ‘Next month – Part 1 of the Sisters of Battle Codex!’. While I was disappointed initially by the fact that my girls only seemed to warrant a Chapter Approved WD codex, I got over it and moved on. I rushed up to my FLGS on Wednesday to purchase the latest issue (even after reading all the venom online about the codex) to see wtf all the fuss was about. I was pretty disappointed that a vast majority of the issue was devoted to Vampire Counts. The Sisters debut of the ‘new’ rules were stuffed at the back of the magazine almost like an embarrassing afterthought. A whopping 14 pages out of 120… I can only hope that next month will see the Sisters maybe even gracing the cover and taking center stage, although with the preview of next month being focused on Ogre Kingdoms, i’m not too sure. We are promised at batrep of the Sisters Vs. Orks, although elsewhere they said it was against  Tyranid Hive Fleet Leviathan, so either they will publish more than one batrep, or they just did a shit job proofreading before going to press.
 
Now i’m not about to launch into whether this new set of rules is going to make them more competitive etc etc, as there are a deluge of blogs out there who are already doing that (and very well, I may add). I’m just trying to get my head around what exactly GW are doing with this army. A cursory glance at the first part of the glorified pamphlet Codex shows us a little bit in the way of the origins and key conflicts, then jumps straight into the Army Special Rules. I wonder if newcomers to the game will look at this and think ‘holy shit! this looks awesome! sod the other armies out there with their shiny books packed with background fluff, i’m rolling with these ladies!’. I guess I have to ask, has this been put together with current non-sisters players in mind, or are they simply appeasing an older crowd who play them? If it is the latter, then I’d be suprised, as i’m sure GW will want to milk as much moolah out of it as they can, so if it’s the former, it’s not particularly impressive. Shit, they’re even regurgitating old artwork for filler.
 
I’m not sure how I feel about the new Faith Points system. At the start of the Sisters player’s turn, a D6 is rolled, and this is the amount of Faith Points available for that turn. As mentioned on many other blogs, it makes little sense to have this the same for forces of any size.  A 3000 point Sisters army would have a max of 6 Faith Points available? Seems a little goofy, considering the religious fervor these ladies are supposed to have…
 
Gone are Inquisitiors and their retinues, as well as allied forces of Imperial Guard or Space Marines. We do get Priests, with ‘Ecclesiarchy Battle Conclaves’ which is where Crusaders, Arco Flagellants and Death Cult Assassins have now been lumped. If I remember correctly, weren’t the arco’s weapons in the previous Codex classed as power weapons? They have added Feel No Pain, which I guess is pretty cool, and gone is that bloody horrible ‘stim injector death’ rule.
 
We don’t see an entry for the Repressor in this list. This was one of the things that was getting me excited about the new lists, was the posssibility of plastic sisters, and a plastic Repressor (any one who has attempted a FW one will know how much of a pain in the arse it is to put together). In fact, the only minatures in the book are old ones, so are they saving that up for the next issue? will they get new minis or will it be the old range redone in Finecast? No fire points on an Immolator now? No 12 inch ride-and-fire either? wtf?
 
Gone is Lord Karamazov on his toilet Throne of Judgement, and back is Arch-Confessor Kyrinov and Uriah Jacobus, who have returned from a well earned break between Codexes.
 
There are some interesting little tweaks here and there, but the army seems to be lacking the somewhat ‘medieval’ feel they had to them before.
 
On the whole, it seemed pretty anti-climatic. I can only hope that GW redeem themselves by releasing new minis, vehicles etc in the next issue, and while i’m not going to be sending my army off to Ebay just yet, their days may well be numbered.
 

Preparing for war!

By the gods! where has the time gone? it seems like only yesterday that I was at AdeptiCon hanging out with Dethtron and Evan… Well, I guess a new position at work, my computer at home taking a shit and generally being bloody knackered are the reasons that I haven’t posted in a while…anyway, enough of the excuses!

AdeptiCon was great fun, and a great chance to catch up with some people from the blogging universe. I met Tasty Taste, Brent, Sandwyrm and a couple of others from the HOP network (sorry, names are escaping me right now!). I also met Papa JJ from Dicerolla who is a gentleman! he approached me and Dethtron at the convention and asked if one or either of us were with Crusader, and thus, the ice was broken! Unfortunately we didn’t get to really hang out much, what with the tourneys going on, and our impending show that night at a venue that was only marginally bigger than my 3-year old’s bedroom. But, friendships were forged and i’m sure that we’ll be seeing Papa JJ again soon for more fermented grain beverages.

My one down point from the con was Forge World. I won’t go on about it, but this is definitely their second strike in my book. They had sod all I wanted at Games Day a couple of years back, and the same thing happened at AdeptiCon. I wanted the ‘event exclusive’ mini, a rather sweet ‘boarding marine’ in pre-heresy armor, but they had sold out. Way to go Forge World. They were painfully trying to get rid of some Eldar Titan that they didn’t want to have to cart home, and from what I understand they did end up taking it home. Well thought out lads…

Forge world: see all this really cool shit here?
me: sweet! hell yeah!
Forge world: well, you can’t buy any of it.
me: >sad face<

If any of you are familiar with the ‘Cheese Shop’ Monty Python sketch, it’s pretty spot on with my FW experience.

So, new Tomb Kings are imminent, and I am super excited. It’s put me into gear full throttle with painting my WFB army, which is also another reason I haven’t posted for a while.

I saw the leaked pictures and pretty much had a nerdgasm. I’ve heard on the interwebs a lot of hate toward the Sepulchral Stalkers/Necropolis Knights, but I think they’re really cool looking, and somewhat over-the-top, which I’ve been coming to expect from Fantasy Battle, considering recent releases. I actually also really like the thought of skeleton troops harnessing them and riding them, it’s just so ‘out there’ and quite refreshing to have this unusual take on what I believe will be a heavy cavalry class for this army. (about bloody time too!). The Sphinx is great too, and the model options just look incredible! I’m super excited about the Tomb Guard though. I actually held a box in my hand at my FLGS the other day, but alas it was still shrik wrapped, but it was on the ‘coming soon’ display. The down side to these guys is that they will be retailing for $41, the same price as a Stegadon… yowch! The one thing that I did find odd about them is the choice of head dress they are wearing, which looks distinctly more Mayan than Egyptian, in my opinion:

A small thing, which I don’t really care about, I just thought it odd… I also managed to thumb through the new army book too, which is gorgeous and lavishly illustrated in full color (yes, it will cost more too). Although we haven’t seen them yet, there will be another wave of TK stuff, as we have seen with other lines, GW will do an initial release, then a second wave. The second wave will consist of what look like plastic Ushabti (3 in a box for about $40 i’m guessing) and some new character figures, including some TK that looks like he’s appearing from a mound of scarabs. I’m hoping that new Liche Priests will be on the cards. Looks like we TK players are stuck with the gods-awful Screaming Skull catapult model, and I didn’t see anything about a new Bone Giant (I HATE that mini!) Having said that, I was in a bit of a rush, and didn’t get to look as deep into the book as I’d liked.

I was also half hoping that we would get new skeleton infantry minis, but alas it was not to be. The cavalry models seem to be out of scale with current horse models they make for other cavalry, which kinda sucks. I would’ve liked to have seen TK dedicated skellie minis, instead of the VCs ones with a couple of egyptian style upgrade sprues in there. There’s a lot I don’t use from those regular sprues, and won’t be using on anything else. Oh well, the pro’s defintely outweigh the cons for the imminent Tomb Kings, and I for one am a happy camper…

The release date of May 7th has totally put the firecrackers up my arse that I needed, and as I wanted to take a much needed break away from painting the Emperor’s finest, this has been perfect! I’ll be posting up some pictures of my progress in the next few days, so stay tuned.

Cheers for now

Dethtron of ‘Dick Move’ would like to say a few words…

In celebration of the When Cannons Fade two year anniversary extravaganza, I’m getting to write an article for Hoagy. I’ve been keeping up with this blog since its inception, so I’m excited to take part in the celebration and contribute a little something of my own. This is only fitting since Hoagy has often declared me as responsible for getting him hooked on gaming again. While this bears a modicum of truth, (only a modicum? – Ed) I don’t feel like an apology is necessary since he’s clearly been enjoying getting back into painting and gaming. (yup, you got me there! – Ed)

With this spirit in mind, I’ve decided to write a bit about why I like to play and what gets me pumped for a game. If I’m being perfectly honest, which I usually am, playing a game of 40k or WFB is just a form of escapism and a way to get my competitive juices flowing. Being surrounded by good friends a few libations and a good pizza has never hurt things either, though.

Like reading a good book, playing a good video game, or watching a great movie, playing a game lets me escape from the demands and drudgery of every day life. As with all of those other things, a good game let’s me forget about my troubles for a while and get absorbed into the action as I identify with various characters or game pieces. More than any of those other media, though, gaming gives me complete control over what’s going on. I think a lot of us gamers tend to be managerial, leader type personalities. Controlling your game pieces gives you a situation that, unlike real life, you are faced with a situation where you are clearly in the drivers seat at all times. If that’s not a good time, I don’t know what is.

Being neither a WAAC or FAAC gamer, I enjoy all aspects of the game from painting to playing.  Since we’re talking about playing here today, though, I have to admit that I’m a pretty competitive person.  I took the ‘Strengths Finder 2.0 Gallup’ test years ago and came up with “achiever” as one of my talent themes.  This came as no surprise to me, as I love crushing the competition and achieving any goals that I set for myself.  This isn’t to say that I’m a sore loser at all. I’m mature enough to know that if I lost, there is a reason that I need to find- mistakes I made that I can learn from. Gaming really gives me a chance to let my competitive nature out of the cage, but in a nice relaxing way. A game of toy soldiers isn’t exactly high stakes most of the time, so it’s nice to be engaged in a competition that won’t have any repercussions in real life.

This brings us to the last reason I play wargames- camaraderie. For years I have kept my gaming in the basement. (With some lotion and a basket? – Ed) While I occasionally shop at the FLGS, I just can’t bring myself to go in and find a pickup game.  Possibly I’m a little shy, but I really I think this stems back to some bad experiences playing MtG and video games with total strangers who turned out to be complete dicks.  Take playing Counterstrike, for example.  I’m not very good at it.  So, back in the day when I tried to get in a pickup game online, things typically wouldn’t go very well for me. Most of the time I’d be dead within seconds and didn’t have the opportunity to get better.  Just try asking a hard-core counterstrike player to let up for a second so you can get used to the game play or level layout some time and see how well that works out.  Much like this, I’ve found experiences in gaming in the past where, the community isn’t willing to help a new player- they’re more interested in seal clubbing.  I’m starting to change my tune on this a bit lately, as I’ve found a lot of really cool people in the community online, but I’ve still not had the opportunity to start going to tourneys yet, but it’ll be happening soon, I promise- especially now that I feel I’ve got my game up to a pretty high level.  I guess I don’t have to worry about getting my ass kicked by 14 year olds too much anymore.

There is one thing the FLGS and tourney scene typically can’t offer, though- pizza and beer.  While I can admit that there are decent people to play with out there, no game outside of my basement can recreate the experiences of good friends getting together over a close game, sharing some drinks, and grabbing some food.  Now that’s something to get excited about.

*************

And there you have it. I asked (read: pestered) Dethy to write up a little something for WCF as part of the 2 year celebration. So, I would like to say a big THANK YOU! to him for squeezing this in between School, writing for Dick Move, House of Paincakes and all the other stuff too. Not only is he the master of large batch painting, he’s also the master of the cowbell:

Cheers for now!

Rally round the flag, boys, rally once again!

Last Sunday, in all its warm sunny glory, saw myself, my good lady Diana, my son and my future mother-in-law high-tailing it down I-80 to Minooka, Illinois to go to a pumpkin patch. We were to rendezvous with Colin (Dethtron) and his Dr. Girlfriend there shortly after noon. This place was pretty cool, it was relatively cheap and there was a lot of stuff going on, including, much to my excitement, an American Civil War battle re-enactment. Anyone who knows me well will know of my love for the ACW, and will know that I was once a ACW re-enactor myself in ol’ Blighty (yes, we really do have ACW re-enactments over there!). I was a private (later Corporal) in the 24th Michigan, part of the ‘Iron Brigade’.

It’s been a good 15 or so years since I took to the field amidst the rattle of musket fire and the earth-shaking boom from the artillery, and it was great to see the field pieces set up ready for action. We all walked around the living history camps before the battle started, in both US and CS areas. I was like a big kid and was loving every minute of it. I had to share my nerdy knowledge of the Civil War with the others as we wandered about. I remarked to Colin that this was ‘Wargaming on a larger scale’. It was great to hear the fife and drum music, to which I could sing the old marching song words to. Dr. Girlfriend found a new friend in one of the the Cavalry’s mounts, and apparently spent the rest of the afternoon mentioning about ‘getting another horse’. Good luck with that one Dethy. I’m sure you’re garden is big enough for it and Loki won’t mind 🙂

Cannons roared and muskets sung their battle hymns as the confederate forces tried to repel the armies of the North, and seemed to do well in the first instance, but then the line began to crumble and the Army of the Potomac gained more and more ground by the minute ending in a defeat and surrender for the Confederate forces.

After the display we hauled ass all the way back down the hill to the farm, where it dawned on me that I had caught the sun pretty well. Dammit! Dethy was asked (read: told) by the little fella to ‘pick me up’ and was consequently carried back down the hill for the most part. I’m pretty sure that he was being taught how to spit as well. Thanks Uncle Dethron!

Probably up to no good...

Man, was I bitten by the bug again! I did mention that I would like to get back into re-enactment, but I got ‘the look’ from Diana, which told me ‘don’t you dare!’ So I guess I’ll have to assuage my hunger for this by attending other events and actually painting my 15mm ACW army and playing the rules system I have. Not suprisingly, a lot of the people on the ‘scene’ (back home, at least) who were re-enactors were/are also ardent wargamers…

So, we saw lots of pumpkins, a couple of tantrums (boy that was fun…) and ate way more unhealthy food that we probably should have: funnel cake, pizza, chocolate preztels, real lemonade etc etc.

On my signal... ...unleash hell!

 

In other news, played a game of 40K against my buddy Evan on Saturday. I fielded my holy Black Templars against his foul traitors of Chaos. Evan managed to squeak out a win, due mostly in part by a couple of stupid decisions on my part later in the game. The dice gods were certainly not with me that day either. I’m not a sore loser (for the most part, lol!) but I really did seem to be making constant lousy rolls throughout the game, so, after we finished, I filed them in the garbage can… So, I need to get some new ones. I’d actually heard about the GW dice cube die having air bubbles and whatnot in them (not that I’m using this for an excuse) but I thought I should just try some new ones anyway.

I’ll be starting on a Black Templar Rhino this week, and I’ll be posting a tutorial on that as well, so stay tuned!

Cheers!

Paul.

Kuma’s Corner. Bastard size hamburgers.

I know I know, its a hobby blog related with wargaming. Well, it’s my blog, and this warrants an entry. Or maybe requires a warrant for entry.

Anyone who lives in, or visited Chicago should (if you don’t already) know about Kuma’s Corner. A burger joint thats about the size of a shoebox with loud and very heavy music playing. The place has been in in the national press numerous times, and also on local TV networks.  It’s famous for having incredible hamburgers all with names of heavy metal bands.

I went there with the Boss Lady and some friends on Saturday night. The place is also renowned for its waiting times to get seated, and we waited an hour and a half(ish) before we sat at our table. Who cares? its KUMAS! The food is totally worth the wait. I ordered myself the ‘Plaguebringer’ while the Boss Lady ordered the ‘Iron Maiden’. Food = good, beer = great. Good times had by all.

So, if you’re in Chicago, do yourself a favor, and go to Kuma’s, order a burger served up with a side of heavy metal.

When Cannons Fade approved!

Non-GW parts in Golden Demon? Is that allowed?

Not sure if this was a fluke or what, but I’m pretty sure I remember reading somewhere that when you enter something into GD, you can’t have parts from other manufacturers. I was just browsing on GW’s website through the entrants from this years Golden Demon to find this well painted chappy:

Now I had to do a double take at the helmet this guy is wearing, and then it dawned on me, I had seen this somewhere before:

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not crying ‘shenanigans’ or anything like that, I think the mini looks great, and actually settled my opinion on whether to pick up some of these for my Black Templars. I guess i’m just surprised that the GW judges didn’t spot it.

Up next, another mini that I had an urge to paint, coming to you in glorious technicolor!

Paul 🙂

Dark Eldar win the race…

Just found out that Dark Eldar will in fact be released November 2010. Well, balls. I was really hoping we’d get some Witch Hunters love before xmas. Looks like that’ll be the arse end of 2011, which could possibly be what will be ‘unveiled’ at Games Day/Golden Demon 2011 in Chicago.

I guess on the plus side, it means I can keep my hands in my pockets and not spend too much moolah for the forseeable future. Meh.

In the meantime:

Games Workshop and customer service…

I like the idea behind St. Celestine. I bought the model, many moons ago. I couldn’t ever make up my mind if I like the idea of what looked like a curtain being held up by two Cherubim behind her. I like the Cherubim, but decided the cloak/drape/rug/curtain/shower curtain just looked limp, so I decided not to use it. I was strenghthened in my decision by the illustration in the Codex, which shows her as an angelic being with majestic wings. Why, then, not do that with the mini?

Anyway, confusion aside, I’d thought about converting her and giving her some feathery wings in homage to the illustrated version. Finding a set that actually seemed in scale was a bit of a task, and over time she got forgotten about. That is until I found some sweet ‘steampunk’ wings at my FLGS. They are reminiscent of the Imperial Aquila, so I thought these would be even better. I stuck them on with some poster-tac to give you an idea of the vision:

Pretty neat, huh?

I also managed to lose the hand holding her sword (but not after I had already stabbed myself in the thumb while trying to drill and pin the impossibly small join), which brings me nicely to the point of my post. I ramble, I know, but it’s my blog, geddit?

As many of you know, back in ‘the day’, Games Workshop used to sell individual bits. So, every seperate bit of any multi-part mini had a serial number, and could be ordered seperately, for converting, or even missing pieces. Wonderful! Brilliant! Genius even!

Well, they stopped doing that.

I found that out this morning when I called their customer service to inquire about buying a replacement arm for Celestine. The chap I spoke to said they no longer offered that service. Bummer. I figured at that point i’d have to jury-rig something to replace said part. I had an inkling they didn’t do that anymore, but it doesn’t hurt to ask, and it didn’t hurt to ask today, as a few minutes of just shooting the shit with Madison (the CS rep) he asked if I had an account with GW. I said yes, and confirmed my email address, and my mailing address before telling me that he would ship me a whole Celestine mini to me, at no charge! There was much rejoicing. I thanked him a number of times, and tried to get a scoop on SoB stuff (no luck, lol!) and came away from the experience very happy.

So, GW may seem like some tyrannical oppressive multinational corporation, apparently vehemently hated by the gaming community (although they keep buying their products…) and are an easy target for the whiners and nay-sayers out there, but you know what, they’re a business. (gasp!). While they may have some odd marketing ideas, and may be on the higher end of the pricing spectrum, they still know how to take care of their customers.

Today is a WIN + FTW for GW.