Monday, 27 October 2008
Haven't posted for a while as have been busy with work and other considerations... This is just a quick update on the Orgyrn models and some thoughts on the modelling of Catachans.
First Up - Catachans.
Just a quick note, the quality of painting here ain't great as they boys are only painted to battlefield standard, but I'm all about the conversions anyway!
As I've mentioned before, I'm a big fan of the catachan model. What it lacks in refined modelling, it more than makes up for in the variety and conversion potential. Here are some simple examples:
The objective with this 'demolition man' sapper unit was to get the feel for his suicidal charge with a 6" range piece of ordinance. The demolition pack is made out of an autocannon ammo pack with multiple grenades strapped to it! It's just leaving the specialists fingers as he slings the heavy object at the enemy. His other arm is struck out for balance as he sprints across the difficult terrain and you can see the demolition charge trigger device (from a sentinel model) on his right hand.
The next model demostrates how every model in the army can be individual. I wanted to give this veteran the sense of 'I just heard something!' and the combination of the standard 'strap arm' lasgun with the catachan combat knife does the trick nicely!
For the next model I wanted something completely frantic! My inspiration was taken straight out of the catachan textbook called 'Predator'. In this case I wanted the missile team loader to be doing his nuts and firing off his lasgun and his missileman's at the same time... in a deparate act to keep the enemy at bay so that the missile launcher can reload - shortly before getting minced!
Now I've finished the last of the elites (Storm troopers and Catachan Veterans), I'm free to start on the Ogyrns. I bought these Ogre Kingdom models about 2 months ago, along with a pack of greenstuff. It's my first attempt at the green, so subconsciously I've been putting off this work while completing all the other jobs. My first attempt last night was started at 11.15pm - bad mistake! The results are included below. The inspiration for this bunch of deliquents is that they are actually Adeptus Mechanicus Ogyrns employed as miners (good eh?) and that they come out fighting when needed! As mentioned before, they look more fearsome than they are, with the majority of the unit weilding enormous weapons as well as storm bolter mounted spikey fists! However their stats will be purely RAW (Rules as written), the exception will be my specialist Ogyrn Bonehead, who I intend to make into a rudimentary mining monster...!
First up, the Grunts...
Model #1: Ammoman
This fella, nicknamed 'ammoman' has the standard armament of the stormbolter, but I wanted to make him look extra awesome by linking it up with an enormous ammo crate on his back. You'll notice also that I've 'updated his giant sword with embossed aquila's from the vehicle sprue.
Work left: Boots and Belly!
Model #2&3: Thruug and Muug "The Jones Twins"
These two were part of the original creative process. I envisoned my Orgyrns charging the enemy and whacking the heathens with whatever comes to hand! In this case Thrug is abusing an bent up Autocannon while his brother has ripped a brightlance off a passing warwalker (or wraithlord ... he's REALLY brave!) and is swinging it about. The matching backpacks and weaponry is meant to give them a simatry ... but these are the least developed of the six.
Work left: boots, belly and something else...?
Model #4: Aquilaman!
Ever since I built they Ogryns I couldn't wait to add just one more option. I wanted a really big standard for the models to carry, preferably one with a huge 'hitty-thing' (technical term) on the end. I love the way this model hits a good balance between the warhammer heraldry but with a bloody big steel aquila, to bash you with!
Work left: I want to keep this model quite clean, boots and belly it is!
Model #5: Radioman
This model was inspired by Devilin and is really there for the comedy value as Orgyrns can't have radio operators and wouldn't be able to operate one anyway. Doesn't stop them wantin' one though does it? In this case the 'radio' is a hodgepodge of a vehicle radio antenna, the original cadian radio, a lascannon powerpack and part of a lascannon too! It might work ... honest? Well the operator doesn't hold that much confidence in it and it operating the old fashioned way - bellowing! The stormbolter/sword was Ulysses 2010 inspired and I'm not that keen on!
Model #6: Ogyrn Bonehead Special Character: Sergeant 'Snapper' Slabcheek.
Prior to the invasion of Armageddon, Gef Slabcheek's career was a particularly uninspiring one. As an 'average' Ogryn close combat specialist, his administratum records denote his 'movement' from battlezone to battlezone. Like most Ogyrns, his faith in the Emperor and his agressive nature combined into a reliable warrior. Unlike most Ogyrns, Slabcheek seemed to survive.
It was during the battle of Armageddon that Slabcheek changed. Following orders, an Orgyrn Auxillia was sent into Ork held battlelines. The Ogyrn Auxillia was believed by commanders to be the best chance of breaking through. In this particular case however, the Ogyrns were met by a combined charge of a Nob's Squad and a gang of Burnboyz. The Chimera assault craft were ripped open and the Nobs and Burna's torched and hacked at the valiant abhumans.
When Slabcheek and his unit emerged from their unit they met the carnage head on. They plowed into the Ork Burna's, slaughtering them before they could bring their weapons to bare. They they grappled mightly with the impressive Nobz, trading blows like puglists! Only the arrival of the Ork Warboss tipped the balance. The giant Ork crashed into the maelstrom, stirking Gef with a glancing blow that sent his staggering away half stunned.
Moment later, when the Ogyrn regained his senses his entire unit lay dead, crushed with the titanic grip of the warboss. The warboss and the straggling Nobz were cheering and hooting, smashing their weapons into the remains of his comrades.
Something feral clicked within Gef Slabcheeks pysche. A rage and a racing intelligence surged through his body. Glancing down at his smashed and broken ripper gun he cast it away and took up the cumbersome weight of an Ork burna.
When the reinforcement arrived all they found was a bruised and battered Gef Slabcheek sitting on top of the Warbosses toasted carcase, a mad and diquietingly intelligent gleam in his eye.
Gef 'Snapper' Slabcheek
Points WS BS S T W I A Ld Sv
45 4 3 5 4 3 3 3 9 4+
Any Ogyrn unit may take Gef 'Snapper' Slabcheek as an upgrade to an Orgyrn model. He must be given exactly the equipment as detailed below, and may not be given any additional equipment. Gef is an Orgyrn bonehead and subequently replaces that unit.
Wargear: Heavy Flamer, Rat Snapper, Carapace Armour, frag grenades.
Smart: Slabcheek is smarter than your average bear, he can therefore operate the Heavy Flamer.
Hatread: Slabcheek hates Orks, as such he gains the 'preferred enemy' skill when fighting orks.
Rat Snapper: The rat snapper has been developed by an Adeptus Mechanicus tech to best complement the fighting style of Slabcheek. The Rat Snapper is a power weapon which grasps onto its victim, causing further damage. This is represented by the snapper being a master crafted power weapon.
Explosive Personality: Slabcheek doesn't believe in doing anything by half. He carries a huge barrel of promethium on his back. When Slabcheek is killed roll a D6. On the roll of 1-4 remove Slabcheek normally. On the roll of 5 or 6, Slabcheeks either triggers his fuel (or a stray shot does), place an ordinance template with the centre over slabcheek. Any model under that template is hit once by a heavy flamer (s5, AP4).
Tuesday, 14 October 2008
The Demise of the Rough Rider and my plan for a rejuvenation.
Rough Riders have had it, well, a bit rough in the last 10 years. Glancing through the new GW website (and boy is it spanking!), the rough riders are the same attilan models I bought 10 years ago for about £2.50 each. The only significant change is the price tag, at £7 each these beauties outperform even the Orgryns in overpriced.
That means a squad of ten will set you back £70! Which is at least three Hellhounds - which are bang for the buck a better buy... except - and this is a big except - Rough Riders have some very nice bonuses.
Ponies are peanuts: While not cheap to buy in the shops, your roughrider is only 2 pts more than a normal guardsman. Even with a explosive maypole he only tops 11pts - which isn't a much considering what you can get.
Explosives: back in 1998 when I bought my first Rough Riders for £2.50 each from a Games Workshop store (yeah, I will keep saying it until you are sick!) The RR's came with a lance based power weapon. Since then some cheaty, crafty, jammy elves on jetbikes have stolen all the stock of power weapons and given them to some woofters called 'Shining Spears'. As usual the Guard just have to make do with whats handy - explosives. This means that while the price per model of roughriders is deflated, their usefulness is seriously hampered.
They only hit on the first turn of the first close combat (GW IG Ed.5 FAQ), but boy do they hit. 2A's each at I5 and S5 with a power weapon will make any self respecting space marine think twice. Be assured that they won't survive the counter attack but imagine the devastation of 10 of these boys (at 110pts) fielding 21 S5 power weapon strikes against 10 terminators. That's an average 4.67 terminators dead - They just made their Christmas bonus!
Pause for thought: what does 0.6 of a dead terminator look like - answers on a postcard to.
When the Termies respond, you will lose 5.56 RR's (Which is 5 RR's and a horse) and you'll probably rout - but good, cause those termies won't catch you either due to their slow and purposeful nature leaving you to consolidate and go on the offensive again, but this time for alternative targets!
Special Somethings: It's a tough choice but sometimes sacrificing a couple of exploding pokers can give you another angle - Melta-mundo! You've attacked the Termies, halfing their numbers and more than paying for the unit, the next thing to go looking for - tanks!
Tanks are a worthy option with roughriders, after all the enemy has just driven them off from their Terminators/Striking Scorpions/Warp Spiders or Obliterators and is happy to see them send packing. Only for the models to turn about and pop a tank at close range. Secondly, the meltagun, as an assault weapon can add extra qudos to subsequent assault and gives your RR's continuing threatening behaviour.
Bomber Run: My personal feelings are torn, while I like the idea of meltagun toting RR's, I'm hard pushed not to simply allocate some meltabombs to the squad and be done with it. It might cost 40 points across ten, but they won't be so 'scary' once denuded of their lances, and then they can strike.
Sergeant Major: another questionmark hangs over the sergeant. Do you simply plug for the 3 I5 S5 attacks of the hunting lance, or do you play the long game and buy him a powersword at 5 pts (he has special dispensation, alongside vets and stormies) - My personal feeling is that it depends on the army you're facing. Eldar and Tau, yes. MEQ's, no. He might be able to kill on a 5,6. But you are better off hitting first time with everything you've got.
Movement: Ok, so fleet of hoof sucks. Getting that extra D6 inches before the charge is ok, but it ain't the advantage it was. Luckily for cavalry there's another advantage. They can move 12" on the charge. That means that an all Hunting Lanced group goes between 19" and 24" on the charge - Tallyho!
Downside: They are tall, they will poke up ridiculously over most 'level 1' scenery. So liek jetbikes, they will attract the firepower. However bet on two things: your enemy will underestimate them and go after your hellhounds, your enemy will think them useless after they have run away and go after anything else.
Conclusion: So my MEQ killers are going to be 10 strong with lances all and a few meltabombs in the mix - that should keep the enemy busy, and at between 110 and 150 pts - its also fairly frugal. Normally this would set you back a gut twisting £70, but just like Baldrick "I have a cunning plan!"
WFB Conversion #2: Following on from the success (ok, they're not quite finished but I'm getting there) of the WFB Ogres as Orgryns, I'm implementing a similar tactic for the Rough Riders to make "Cadian Style" rough riders. It follows the following logic:
- Buy two packs of Empire Pistolliers @ £9 each (Gifts4Geeks)
- Buy one Cadian Storm Trooper boxset @ £13.50 each (G4G again)
- Buy 10 lances @ 40p each (that's £4 for those who can't add up.)
Final, Final Conclusion: When facing Eldar, Orks and Tyranids then the Hellhound is the ONLY Fast Attack option worth considering for the Imperial Guard. 3 Hellhounds are terror incarnate, but for the ultimate MEQ leveller - it's got to be Rough Riders.
The Prosecution case rests. Rough Riders will Rock!
While researching I also found the following superb work done on this message board: CADIAN ROUGH RIDERS
Friday, 10 October 2008
I think it was Admiral Lord Nelson who made the comment 'Past Gibraltar, every man is a bachelor!' It was fairly racey a comment at the time and still rings discordantly in my ears now. Especially since Nelson's proclivities in the bedroom and wardroom angled towards the extreme 'Cliff Richard' end of Bachelor-boy...
Anyhow enough of such debauchery, the witty title drawing you in is actually an affectation to a very good point made by Ultramarine Blue, which is that while building up and playing one army in particular is a core part of gaming, there is a joy in getting your hands on a new codex and fostering another man's army (or building your own - but that a collecting digretion!)
"Avast! Ye Gads, good Lord man!" I hear you cry. "Have you gone mad! Playing with another mans army is like playing with another mans tackle - we'll hear nothing more of it!"
But you'd be wrong to say such a thing.
Insights and Gunsights
Nothing gives you better insight into how your opponents view your own army than facing them across the field. When playing the Imperial Guard (as I often do), I'm frequently concerned over the feeble nature of my troops, they die very easily and I concern myself about their Mum's back home... This (slightly weird) view has led me to become over protective of the little 'goit's' and subsequently rather anally retentive when it comes to movement, cover saves and the like.
Turning the tables and facing down the Guard with Dev's Eldar force makes for an enlightening experience. Guard are a daunting and intrasigent foe. They have too many bodies, and if there's enough cover saves about are seriously difficult to wither down. They might not charge you like Tyranids or Orks, but they're attritional qualities are second to none, allowing the army to soak up casualties like no other. Their battle cannons and missile launchers et cetera ad infinitum...
You get the gist.
Fighting your own force. You have the advantage of knowing your enemy well, better in fact than they're commander. However you also quickly discover that those fearsome terminators or sneaking scorpions aren't half as effective as you hoped they would be. This is due to the fact that your own fear of them has been bouying up your reversed confidence in them - confidence missplaced!
Very quickly the strengths and weaknesses of your army are discovered - and this is useful, this leads you to quickly identify your own vulnerabilities, and more importantly gets you into the mindset of your enemy. This helps you to identify the cut and thrust of tactics from a multifaceted (facet - a word I first learned reading 'Inquisitor' by Ian Watson circa 1995) viewpoint. It also gives you really great insights into the 'fulcrums' of some armies.
Space Marines often wear their fulcrum with a big sign saying "Shoot here! I can take it!", however with other armies (like Eldar, Necron, Tyranid and sometimes Ork) the fulcrum can be a little more subtle. For example, while you're out pounding the Scorpions or Shining Spears, his jetbike squadron have just minced your command squad etc etc.
I'm not saying that you're incapable of working this out in your head, but having a practical eyeview of the other armies views will allow you to allocate strangths and weaknesses accordingly. This is the difference between considering the theory and knowing of actual situations.
This has several benefits, for starters you will start to understand which units the enemy will ignore, this is useful. That remnant squad with a flamer (Darksol - Ta me duck!)has suddenly become twice as handy because he's the least 'bullet-magnet' squad on the board.
This way of playing also produces a lovely warm feeling. If you have someone you find difficult to play (because of their attitude, silly games or pedantry) steal their army list! I would actively encourage it. There's nothing quite so enjoyable as losing to your own army, or reversely defeating you own models. There's a satisfaction mixed with sadness and a pride mixed with chagrin... suddenly you'll find that those people you really enjoy playing, but frequently get 'over-competitive' with are great fun to play.
Once you have a taste for it, the playing of other armies becomes a little addictive. So much so that you suddenly have to consider the next steps in buying. This is where cross fertilisation is key. There are multiple armies that can be fielded with eachother giving you limitless new tactical learning and intelligent gaming. Afterall if the game ain't challenging - what's the point?
As a case in point lets look at the current collections of Suneokun and Devilin. Right now the Kochi 6th are nearing completion alongside Dev's beautifully crafter Eldar Army. The Space Marines are the next step, following by the Tyranids. Dev's keen on Necrons next and I fancy Tau (not literally, they are blue after all). So what do we do?
We Cross Fertilise the armies:
- Inquisitorial DeamonHunters supplement IG and Space Marine forces. Allowing interesting mixes.
- Genestealer Cult Army through combining the BroodLord led Tyranid army with the Imperial Guard.
- Kroot Mercanaries to supplement Eldar, Space Marine or IG Forces. They'd even work for the Orks if paid enough.
- This Christmas I'm getting a techmarine and 4 servitors. I love the techmarine model, but what I really want is cheap servitors. These boys will work with my Techpriest Enginseer and as Warriors for my Inquisitor.
- Dev's ordering Rhino's like crazy, they work great in both a Space Marine Army and an Inquisitorial Storm Troopers squad.
Best Model-swap options:
- Lend your Leman Russ Battle Tank and Chimera's to your Ork boyz from Black Reach to give you transport and BoomGun action.
- Storm Troopers everywhere, you might seek them here or there, but stormtroopers are a cost effective and useful troop addition to most Imperial forces. And now they come in a pretty Valkyrie flyer!
- Stick a few Smurf's in your IG force and call them 'DeathWatch' - no-one will notice, honest!
So as you can see, while having one perfect army is great, having lots is better, and if you are going to get Tau, start with some Carnivores. I hope the ideas above have tweaked your imagination! My knowledge of GW is not yet encyclopedic, so I'd welcome further suggestions...
On nother note ... I've received word from a supplier that GW are no longer shipping Hellhounds - it could be that the Hellhound is being released in spring...
Friday, 3 October 2008
Wednesday, 1 October 2008
- To make lying down heavy bolter and autocannon models (although they look like they wanna pee!)
- To create your very own 'dancing and singing' cadian unit. This group of numpties will prance about the battlefield, singing their hearts out and attracting a disproportionate amount of fire from both sides!