Thursday, 30 May 2019

“Slay Without Pity; Triumph Without Remorse.”

"You are the legions of Khorne, his favourite warriors."
This 28mm Bloodhunter is one of the plastic multi-part models which can be assembled using some of the sprue pieces found inside the “Games Workshop” Daemons Of Khorne “Start Collecting!” boxed set. Primarily assembled so as to provide my Blades of Khorne “Age Of Sigmar” warband to field two minimum-strength units of ten Bloodletters, this figure will also allow me to similarly split my chaos daemons in “Warhammer 40K”.

The miniature was initially given an undercoat of “Vallejo” Heavy Red before being copiously washed with "The Army painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. The “Chosen of Khorne” was then dry-brushed with more “Vallejo” Heavy Red and had details such as its horn, hands, hooves, back spines and sword hilt base-coated with “Citadel” Abaddon Black.
Heretic Astartes WIPs - The World Eaters are slowly having their numerous details 'picked out'
As I have previously painted a version of this model with ‘pinkish’ horns, I decided to leave this particular Bloodhunter’s formidable-looking curved outgrowths black, and subsequently used more of the “Citadel” Base colour to gently blend the daemon's dark hands and trotters in with the Slaughter-kin's red limbs. In addition the unit leader’s Hellblade was undercoated with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna before being treated to at least two coats of Gold.

The great two-handed weapon, which can "cut effortlessly though any armour crafted by mortals", was later washed with "The Army painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and dry-brushed with more "Vallejo" Gold. Lastly I picked out the Warmonger of Khorne's "sharp, needle-like teeth" with “Vallejo” White and its "serpentine tongue" with Heavy Ochre. The blood-soaked beast’s "slavering jaws" were washed with "Citadel" Agrax Earthshade and its tongue, with Reikland Fleshshade.
"Toon Realms" WIPs - The two knights had been primed, washed and dry-brushed
Staying with the “Lord Of Skulls” I have slowly made some more progress on the Aspiring Champion I recently assembled to lead my squad of World Eater space marines for “Warhammer 40K”. This Heretic Astartes is a great example of how carried away I can sometimes get when super-gluing a miniature together from a plethora of pieces, without ever considering just how I am ever going to paint all the guns, icons and elaborately-detailed shoulder-pad whilst retaining my sanity.

Far more straightforward has been my pigmentation of some recently-arrived “Toon Realms” reinforcements from "Lucid Eye Publications". Whilst it would have been very tempting to just provide the knights with black straps, belts and sheaths, I ultimately felt their sculpts’ excellent detail deserved a more colourful palette, and therefore opted to apply some gold and brown to the two warriors’ armour and leatherwork…

Tuesday, 28 May 2019

"A Supernatural Blade That Cleaves Through Enemy Units."

"Forged from pure rancour, a Wrath-axe is Khorne's hatred incarnate."
This huge four-piece hard plastic 28mm scale model of a Wrath-Axe can be bought as part of the Judgements Of Khorne boxed set by "Games Workshop", and "is a manifestation of Khorne’s otherworldly anger." Summoned by a Khornate priest, "should their fury be worthy of the Blood God’s favour",  the "supernatural blade scrapes across the ground" hitting enemy units on a 2+ and causing them to suffer either D3 and D6 mortal wounds (potentially both).

Initially undercoated with two layers of "Vallejo" Heavy Orange, "Khorne’s hatred incarnate" was washed with "Citadel" Carroburg Crimson and dry-brushed with (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Orange. The skull-infested flames were then highlighted using "Vallejo" Heavy Ochre and later on, some Iraqi Sand.
Sharaz Jek Android WIPs - The robots have been primed and dry-brushed
The axe itself, whose shaft proved particularly difficult to reach with a brush-tip due to my naive decision to fully assemble the model prior to painting it, was primed in "Citadel" Abaddon Black, and subsequently treated to a combination of Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. The giant supernatural weapon was finished by dry-brushing "its razor edge" using some (more) "Citadel" Ironbreaker, and having its iconography 'picked out' with "Vallejo" Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.

With the last of my Judgements of Khorne completed, I have turned my attention to the much more straightforward subject of pigmenting another batch of Sharaz Jek Androids by "Black Tree Design". Disappointingly, these'll probably be the last of the company's "Doctor Who" miniatures range that I will be purchasing, as the last few orders I have made with them have proved troublesome at best. This particular array of robots, along with some armoured Sea Devils and a pair of Myrka, were purchased at the start of March and seemingly required a few prompts before they finally arrived over two months later...
Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot, Game Kastle Knight Mascot, and Gruf The Bear WIPs
In addition I have been busy basing and priming some more "Toon Realms" miniatures by "Lucid Eye Publications". I've currently got a fair few of King Victor's armoured knights on my painting table, so thought I'd add a couple of characters to their number in the shape of the Game Kastle Knight Mascot (n.b. I have filed away the G.K. on his shield) and Your Hobby Place Knight Mascot.

As I'm basing my Men of the West army upon J.R.R. Tolkien's Gondor, I aim to have one of these two heroes 'play the role' of Faramir, with the other probably representing Captain Ingold; who guarded the northern gate of the Rammas Echor. I also couldn't resist applying some paint to Grüf The Bear, whose hulking size and marvellous pose made me immediately think of Beorn the Skin-changer in his bestial form.

Friday, 24 May 2019

"This Slaughterpriest Is So Dedicated To The Howling Devotion To The Blood God..."

"...That even his enemies begin to fall to blind, bezerker rage."
This 42mm tall multi-part plastic kit of a Slaughterpriest with Hackblade and Wrath-hammer is produced by “Games Workshop” for their “Age Of Sigmar” range, and was 'originally' available as a as a freebie figure from the September 2016 edition of "White Dwarf". Consisting of ten pieces, this miniature was 'reasonably simple to assemble', albeit I did end up removing a skull which was jutting out from one of his shoulders on account of its slim spike disconcertingly bending to even the slightest of touches.

Super-glued onto a "Citadel" 40mm round base and "swollen with the power of Chaos", the model was primed using two coats of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna. His numerous golden surfaces, comprising of boot toe-caps, shin-guards, knee-pads, thigh-plates, stomach icon, shoulder-pad and helmet, were then treated to a combination of "Vallejo" Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
"Such are the priests of the Blood God, mighty warriors whose holy powers are bound to their prowess in battle."
Having decided that the Bloodbound was going to be dark-skinned, I painted his leather boots and linen undergarment with "Citadel" Abaddon Black, and the numerous straps holding his armour in place with "Vallejo" Heavy Brown. In addition I 'picked out' the horns of the "favoured champion of Khorne" using a little Iraqi Sand, then later shaded these, alongside all the leather fastenings, with a dab of Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter".

The demagogue of "Khorne’s wrathful will" next had his loincloth, breeches, and skirt layered in "Vallejo" Heavy Red and washed with some "Citadel" Nuln Oil. This clothing was subsequently dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Heavy Red. I also applied some Heavy Red to the Slaughterpriest's left hand, highlighted his fingers with Dark Vermilion, and then generously washed the grisly fist with "Citadel" Crimson Carroburg.
Reaper Of Souls WIPs - The "Horrorclix" figure has had its skeleton layered, shaded and dry-brushed
With my 'grotesque slab of muscle' almost completed, I pigmented the "hulking" priest's Hackblade and Wrath-hammer with "Citadel" Ironbreaker, along with his belt's numerous metal adornments and painful-looking shoulder-spike, before treating all of these areas with a healthy splash of Nuln Oil. Then, as a final touch I dry-brushed the maniac's weapons with more Ironbreaker and his horns with some additional "Vallejo" Iraqi Sand.

With such a highly-detailed miniature 'under my belt' I have settled down to painting something far more straightforward in the shape of a "Horroclix" Reaper Of Souls by "Wizkids". This formidably-sized monster is a much-appreciated gift from Bryan Scott of "Vampifan's World Of The Undead" fame, and has been desperately waiting in the wings of my painting queue for far too long...

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

"We Are Truth-Speakers, We Men Of Gondor."

"We boast seldom, and then perform, or die in the attempt."
This "cartoon scale" white metal figure of one of King Victor's Royal Guard is produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and can be bought from the company's "Toon Realms" range as a pack of four miniatures. Sculpted by Steve Saleh, I have painted the warrior in the colours of the Guards of the Tower of Gondor so as to field a unit of (Elite Foot) Guards of the Citadel for “Dragon Rampant” by "Osprey Games".

Initially primed with two coats of "Citadel" Abaddon Black, this personal bodyguard to the Stewards of Gondor was dry-brushed using some "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal and subsequently washed in "Citadel" Nuln Oil. The “mainly… stationary guard” then had his boots and spear shaft layered with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, and his belt buckle, spear and helmet delicately dabbed in Gold. All of these areas were later washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
"On very rare occasions a mortal has bested one of these daemons..."
The Tower Guard’s helmet, armour, chain-mail, shield emblem and spear-tip were pigmented using a combination of "Citadel" Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. These parts were later delicately dry-brushed with (more) Ironbreaker. Finally, the knight’s linen surcoat was ‘picked out’ in “Vallejo” White and ‘shaded’ with a tiny amount of Pale Grey.

Stepping across into the much more serious fantasy-based universe of the Mortal Realms and “Age Of Sigmar” by “Games Workshop”, I have completed another two Bloodletters for my Blades of Khorne war-host. This pair of daemonic warriors, armed with fearsome Hellblades, were painted in my usual “Vallejo” Heavy Red and “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade palette, and takes my infantry unit’s total to twenty-two “Slaughter-kin”.
Aspiring Champion WIPs - The World Eater leader is slowly having all his detail 'picked out'
Sticking with the Chaos Gods of “Games Workshop”, but shifting my attention forwards into the Forty-First Millennium, I am making some steady progress on the first of five World Eaters I recently assembled from an old Chaos Space Marine boxed set. These Heretic Astartes will be predominantly black and silver in colour, but in order to show their allegiance to Khorne, I plan on painting their shoulder-pads and helmets in the Blood God’s instantly recognisable red and gold colour scheme.

In addition, as this first figure will be the squad’s plasma pistol-wielding leader I thought I’d take the extra time in applying “Vallejo” Gold to all of the Aspiring Champion’s trim and adornments, rather than use the “Citadel” Ironbreaker I plan on using for the rest of the figures. Hopefully this will allow the model to stand out that bit more on the tabletop amidst his men, and yet still prevent the veteran warrior from blending in with the all-red and gold Khorne Bezerkers I intend to build once my initial corrupted Astartes are completed.

Monday, 20 May 2019

"The Space Marines Are Humanity's Finest Warriors."

"The Adeptus Astartes are genetically modified superhuman warrior-monks
This 28mm scale plastic model of an Adeptus Astartes was produced by “Games Workshop” way back in 1988, and could be created from the numerous parts found within the (original) RTB-01 Imperial Space Marines boxed set. Produced by Jes Goodwin, Aly Morrison and Bob Naismith, this particular iconic miniature has been assembled so as to carry a missile launcher, and was originally going to join my recently completed Black Templar tactical squad as an additional heavy weapons option.

However, having dusted the old sculpt down and determined just how disconcertingly thick its "Citadel" Chaos Black undercoat was, I felt it would probably better serve the Emperor as a bronze statue placed atop a square-shaped resin plinth sold by "Telfer Model Design". Resultantly, the miniature was treated to a double layer of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, before being treated to two coats of Brass.
Interceptor Justicar WIPs - The Grey Knight has been primed, shaded and dry-brushed
The Mk VI Corvus suited Space Marine was then heavily washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade and heavily dry-brushed using (more) "Vallejo" Brass. Later I applied some generous dabs of the "Citadel" Technical paint Nihilakh Oxide to the vast majority of the figure's numerous nooks and crannies, such as his riveted shoulder-pad, in order to denote the statue's great age, and subsequently blended this in with a second dry-brush of "Vallejo" Brass.

The model's plinth was initially pigmented using a few applications of "Vallejo" Heavy Bluegrey, and then enthusiastically shaded with "Citadel" Nuln Oil. Finally, the detail in the stonework was 'highlighted' courtesy of a "Vallejo" Heavy Bluegrey dry-brush.
Wrath-axe WIPs - The Judgement of Khorne has had its flames finally finished
Sticking with the futuristic universe of "Warhammer 40K", I have made some progress on the leader of my Grey Knight Interceptor unit. The Justicar has had a couple of additional adornments glued in place, and then been primed, washed and dry-brushed in line with his silver-coloured brethren.

Lastly, I have almost completed the last of my Judgements of Khorne for "Age Of Sigmar", the formidable Wrath-axe. This multi-part plastic model was unfortunately super-glued together before I realised just how difficult it was going to be to get my paint-brush to reach into certain areas of the ensemble. However, having rethought my palette for the "supernatural blade that cleaves through enemy units" I believe it should still look rather imposing as part of my Blades of Khorne warhost...

Saturday, 18 May 2019

"Many A Doer Of Great Deeds Might Say No More."

"But what is a hobbit?"
This "cartoon scale" white metal figure of one of King Victor's Men-at-Arms is produced by “Lucid Eye Publications” and can be bought from the company's "Toon Realms" range as a pack of four miniatures. Sculpted by Steve Saleh, I have painted the warrior in the colours of Gondor so as to hopefully field a unit of (Heavy Foot) Minas Tirith Knights for “Dragon Rampant” by "Osprey Games".

Originally undercoated with two layers of "Citadel" Abaddon Black, Denethor's warrior was dry-brushed using some "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal and subsequently washed in "Citadel" Nuln Oil. The soldier's boots were then treated to a touch of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, whilst his sword hilt was given a lick of Gold. Both of these areas were later washed with "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade.
Slaughterpriest WIPs - The Khorne warrior now just needs his helmet and shoulder-pad to be finished
I 'picked out' the Man-at-Arms' helmet, armour, chain-mail and shield emblem using a combination of "Citadel" Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil, before dry-brushing these parts with (more) Ironbreaker. Lastly, I spotted the model's belt-buckle with a dab of "Vallejo" Gold and a little Strong Tone Quickshade by "The Army Painter".

Sticking with fantasy I have continued to make some additional progress on my Slaughterpriest with Hackblade and Wrath-hammer for "Age Of Sigmar" by "Games Workshop". Somewhat frustratingly my decision to paint the "favoured champion of Khorne" as being dark-skinned has caused me a few minor issues in painting all the warrior's different-coloured leathers in sufficiently contrasting browns.
Space Marine WIPs - The Adeptus Astartes statue just needs to be dry-brushed with more "Vallejo" Brass
Admittedly, most of these leg and armour straps can't actually be seen unless you pick the miniature up and look beneath his loin-cloth. But the 'Eavy Metal' fanboy in me wouldn't let me rest until I'd at least done a tabletop standard job using a mixture of "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna, Heavy Brown, "Citadel" Abaddon Black and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. Fortunately, since completing these areas I've found the Bloodbound warrior a lot more fun to paint, especially after deciding to pigment one of his hands as if it was drenched in gore.

Finally, I've almost finished an old Eighties plastic Space Marine I have 'rescued' from my 'Bitz Bin'. Now destined to forever stand upon my Forty-First Millennium battlefield as an aged Adeptus Astartes statue, I have completed the model's stone plinth and much of its brass-work, and am now working on its verdigris.

Wednesday, 15 May 2019

“They Call Him Baba Yaga.”

"It's personal."
This 28mm scale resin model of Baba Yaga was produced by “Spectre Miniatures” and was only available as a special limited edition figure for a short time on the company’s website following “Salute” 2019.  Obviously influenced by Chad Stahelski’s 2014 American neo-noir action thriller film “John Wick”, the sculpt bares an uncannily strong resemblance to leading actor Keane Reeves.

The “retired but deadly hitman seeking vengeance” was initially cleaned of all his disconcertingly visible mould lines and ‘flash’ prior to being undercoated using two layers of "Citadel" Abaddon Black. The paid killer was then roughly dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal before being almost drowned in "Citadel" Nuln Oil.
Slaughterpriest WIPs - The Khorne warrior is slowing having all of his detail 'picked out'
Hoping to provide at least a little contrast to the all-black attired anti-hero, I subsequently ‘picked out’ Yaga’s shoes, hair, firearms and shoulder-strap with pure “Citadel” Abaddon Black, and unsurprisingly applied a coat of “Vallejo” Heavy Skintone to his face and hands. These areas of flesh were later washed using a little “Citadel” Reikland Fleshshade, before being ‘lightened’ with a tad more “Vallejo” Heavy Skintone. Finally, some watered-down “Citadel” Abaddon Black was applied to Baba’s cheeks to (hopefully) provide the impression of his beard.

In addition to finishing my first ever figure from “Spectre Miniatures”, I have been slowly progressing the Slaughterpriest with Hackblade and Wrath-hammer I recently assembled in order to allow my “Age Of Sigmar” Chaos Army to utilise the Judgements of Khorne. This “Games Workshop” plastic model is absolutely packed full of detail, and resultantly has proved somewhat tough-going in comparison to my warhost’s more daemonic units.
Space Marine Statue WIPs - The Eighties plastic model has been re-based, primed and layered
In particular, the demagogue of Khorne’s wrathful will has a myriad of leg straps all hidden beneath his loincloth which have taken an age to carefully ‘pick-out’, shade and then paint around. To make matters worse though, I was rather keen on colouring the cloth protecting the dark prophet’s bare legs from their armour-plating in red rather than simple black, so have had to repeatedly return to these areas to ensure enough of the pigmentation is showing through to distinguish it from the hulking priest’s black boots and shorts.

Finally, I have ‘dug out’ one of the original plastic Adeptus Astartes I assembled from the Eighties Imperial Space Marine boxed set. Armed with a missile launcher, and unhappily thickly undercoated in black, I thought the model might enjoy a new lease of life on my tabletop as a bronze statue…

Sunday, 12 May 2019

"Imperial Death Troopers Are A Terrifying Sight."

"It's the trooper you don't see that will get you."
These six 40mm tall hard plastic elite soldiers of the Tarkin Initiative are produced by “Fantasy Flight Games” and can be found inside the company's Imperial Death Troopers Unit Expansion for "Star Wars: Legion". "Hand-selected from the Stormtroopers Corps by Imperial Intelligence itself", these  jet black armoured commandos made their debut in Gareth Edwards' 2016 motion picture "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story".

The "elite variant of the Galactic Empire's stormtroopers" were all primed using two coats of "Citadel" Abaddon Black and mercilessly dry-brushed with "Vallejo" Heavy Charcoal to really bring out all of the sculpts' meticulous details. Each figure was then treated to a more than generous splash of "Citadel" Nuln Oil, so as to help blend the slightly contrasting undercoat and highlight together.
"They served as protective details and bodyguards for important Imperial officers..."
With the majority of the miniatures finished, at least in my tabletop standard books, I decided to 'pick out' all their helmet lights with a combination of "Vallejo" Heavy Grey and "Citadel" Biel-Tan Green and some of their pouches' fasteners with a small dab of "Vallejo" White. I did consider painting all of their eye lenses a deep green as well, but to be honest some of these 'sunken' areas were so tiny that I felt it ultimately wouldn't be worth the effort.

However, having had a good look at DT-F16's figure, I was inclined to break away from the 'official imperial palette' and pigment her main armament's thick leather strap in "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna and "Citadel" Nuln Oil, in order to make the commander stand out that little bit more on the battlefield. In addition, I 'picked out' all of the Death Troopers' belt buckles and E-11D blaster rifle barrels with "Citadel" Ironbreaker and (more) "Nuln Oil.
Skull Altar WIP - The "dread monument" has been assembled using twenty-one plastic components
Moving across to the Mortal Realms of "Age Of Sigmar" by "Games Workshop" I have rather impulsively purchased a Skull Altar for my Blades of Khorne warhost. This "great centrepiece to your Khorne collection" is truly a gigantic piece of terrain, so I was somewhat disappointed to discover that it didn't actually come with any sort of base, and instead relied upon my skills as a modeller to ensure I positioned every since tiny part of its lower segment into the perfect position so as to ensure it stood flat on my tabletop.

As you can probably imagine, I somewhat balked at such a task and have been patiently awaiting for the Nottingham-based company to send me a "citadel" 160mm circular stand for it to sit upon. Now that has arrived, I have not only assembled the brutish building, but both primed it with "Vallejo" Heavy Sienna" and gritted its base...

Friday, 10 May 2019

“The Life-size Recumbent Effigy Was First Found In The Tombs Of Royalty…”

"...And then spread to the nobility."
This 34mm long resin model of a Mouse-oleum – The Tomb Of The Mouse Lord is produced by “Oathsworn Miniatures” and can be purchased as part of their “Burrows & Badgers” range. The small(ish) scenic piece was part of a handful of miniatures I picked up from the company’s stall whilst at “Salute” 2019, and has been super-glued onto one of the 50mm circular bases I predominantly use for my objectives markers.

The effigy was initially undercoated using two coats of the old “Citadel” Layer paint Charadon Granite and subsequently heavily washed with Nuln Oil. It was then simply dry-brushed using more Charadon Granite. As a final touch I later mixed some “Vallejo” White in with the “Citadel” Charadon Granite and very lightly dry-brushed this combination over the entire model so to help highlight its excellent detail. 
My Daemonic host prepares to advance supposedly safe in the knowledge that the Nurglings will protect them
Sticking with science fiction-based wargaming, I have also managed to play my first 'proper' game of "Warhammer 40K" by "Games Workshop", fielding a 736-point strong Khorne/Nurgle Chaos force against a similarly costed unit of Ultramarines, who were additionally aided by a pair of formidably tough robotic combat walkers. The ensuing battle for an ancient relic upon a planet increasingly lost to the plague-ridden sores of the Plague God and bleeding iconography of the Blood God was understandably bloody, but despite being unable to finish the game to its conclusion due to time constraints, it reaffirmed in my mind just how very much I am currently enjoying this "newest edition of everybody's favourite wargame" as the fight is never seemingly over whilst playing it until the 'fat lady sings'.

This ability to suffer serious set-backs yet still entertain the hope of ultimate victory proved itself time and again during this game, especially in its early stages when I unwisely utilised my Nurglings' "Mischief Makers" ability to place them just 9" away from my enemy's deployment zone. Seemingly shielding a rock-solid core of twenty Bloodletters and twenty Plaguebearers behind their tiny chittering bodies, I felt confident the "Gleeful Castoffs" would keep my opponent busy up for a couple of turns at least and give my larger daemons ample time to advance within reach of their foes.
The Armiger Helverin and Knight Errant start firing upon the Bloodletters and Plaguebearers
Enter an Armiger Helverin, supposedly the "lightest class of Imperial Knight combat walker", and its raking firepower, and my 'delaying tactic' was spread like so much mulch all over the ground with the roll of a fistful of dice. Such a disheartening loss at the very start of the fight left my entire centre wide open to the guns of a towering Knight Errant and my initially terrifying Bloodletter formation began to slowly get whittled away before my very eyes.

Fortunately, despite my opening set-back I was still able to push my main units up the table towards Khorne's Bleeding Icon (which was being used merely as an immobile terrain feature), whilst a pair of Beasts of Nurgle bounded along my left flank to take control of a small stargate which had been identified as the battlefield's one and only valuable relic. However, ominously spread out in front of my warhost ready for the second turn's Shooting phase, was an incredible amount of the Emperor's firepower, including a Primaris Lieutenant who almost glued himself alongside the reassuringly solid form of his force's smaller "fast-moving weapons platform, as well as the rest of the Ultramarines, which assembled before my Beasts of Nurgle.
The Bloodletters, Beasts of Nurgle and Plaguebearers fail their charges 
I can only give thanks to the Dice Gods that my Chaos daemons weren't completely eradicated in the subsequent hail of bullets that followed, especially after both my Bloodletters and Plaguebearers failed their charges. My Plaguesword-carrying warriors at least had their "Disgustingly Resilient" ability to help them soak up all the wounds which were riddling their ranks, but my liver-coloured "Slaughter-Kin" were increasingly finding their 5+ Invulnerability Save for being "Daemonic" wasn't enough protection when caught out in the open before the tender mercies of an Imperial Knight's weaponry.

Eight of the Bloodletters fell before the combined firepower of the Intercessor's Lieutenant and the "Questor Imperialis in High Gothic", utterly breaking the backbone of my once mighty close quarter combatants, and making it clear that the Blood God had probably been less than impressed with their decision to charge the solitary Ultramarine Officer stood atop a pile of ruins, rather than the nearby 'ancient battlesuit'. Certainly I wasn't looking forward to an impossible Morale phase as it even the bravest of Khorne's foot soldiers would surely flee from such a beating..?
Bloodletters swarm the Lieutenant, whilst the Beasts of Nurgle get stomped upon by the Imperial Knight
A single roll of the dice later and 'reality had blinked'. Not only had my Bloodletter's "Daemonic Icon" ensured that "no models flee", but it had bolstered my horde with five freshly-resurrected "Slaughter-Kin". Suddenly, the Lieutenant's position looked far less survivable, whilst my Plaguebearers and Beasts of Nurgle both finally made it into contact with their respective foes. Sadly, time was against us to finish the conflict, so the game's final act was to see the hulking Imperial Knight, quite possibly incensed by suffering a wound courtesy of "Smite", squashing one of my 'enthusiastic monsters who love to play' with its feet...

Wednesday, 8 May 2019

Warhammer 40K Report: Black Templars Verses Bloodletters - Part Two

SERGEANT MUNDAY BATTERS A BLOODLETTER AS HIS UNIT MAKE FOR HIS POSITION
"The story so far… Whilst exploring some ruins on the planet Simbad Seven, a small unit of Black Templars have discovered the presence of an ancient relic near to a long abandoned plaza. However Sergeant Munday's unit soon find themselves under attack by a small warband of Bloodletters, who seemingly want the relic for their Blood God, Khorne..."
THE ORIGINAL TABLETOP - THE RUINS OF SIMBAD SEVEN

The Bloodreaper advanced to the Ruined Plinth, and there joined the three Bloodletters moving west through the ruins. The daemons in the north travelled south, with one even reaching the north-eastern corner of the Plaza.

It was already the mid-way stage of the skirmish, so the space marines knew they had to be within striking distance of the Ancient Relic [Objective Four] just as soon as they could. However, the two Black Templars by Terrace Three actually moved further west, away from their objective so that the Bloodletters on the Ruined Plinth were just still within reach of their "Rapid Fire" Boltguns. Sergeant Munday moved into the south-west corner of the Plaza, noting on his visor feed that the space marine farthest north of his position was advancing south to Terrace Two.
THE BLACK TEMPLARS HOLD THE PLAZA, WHILST THE BLOODLETTERS INFEST THE PLINTH
The two space marines by Terrace Three opened fire upon the inhabitants of the Ruined Plinth, and despite the dilapidated structure providing the "Slaughter-Kin" with some protection, one of the daemons fell dead. Sergeant Munday and the Black Templars stood around the Plaza also shot towards the Ruined Plinth, yet found "Khorne's foot soldiers" remained unharmed due to their 5+ Invulnerability Save. Fortunately for the Adeptus Astartes though, a lone Bloodletter attempting to enter the Plaza was successfully gunned down.

In retaliation, two of the surviving Bloodletters on the Ruined Plinth leapt down and swarmed around the space marine stood by the Plaza's southern wall, whilst two more daemons and their leader actually entered the central structure and encircled Sergeant Munday. The Black Templar's commander was engulfed by seven attacks, but his "Tenacious Survivor" ability seemingly spared his life. Sadly however, the Adeptus Astartes by the Plaza's wall was not so fortunate and was cut down by a frenzy of Hellblades despite his 3+ Save.
 THE BLOODLETTERS LAUNCH A FEROCIOUS ATTACK UPON THE DEFENDERS OF THE PLAZA
Ordering his nearest brothers-in-arms into the fray, Sergeant Munday managed to club one of his daemonic attackers to the ground. Two of the three nearby space marines successfully charged into the fray, with one seeking revenge for his fallen comrade, whilst the other went to aid his embattled leader. Inspired by their presence, Munday managed to best the Bloodreaper in close combat before falling dead alongside a colleague under a torrent of Hellblades. Bodies were now starting to pile up in and around the Plaza, yet neither side failed the subsequent Morale phase.

Those Bloodletters not in close combat headed east towards the Ancient Relic [Objective Four], whilst the daemon skulking atop Terrace Four jumped down to the ground to join them. With time now against the Black Templars, the two space marines in the southwest corner of the battlefield advanced as far as the southern tip of the Ruined Plinth. However, the pair were still a considerable distance from contesting the skirmish's sole objective.
THE BATTLE OF THE PLAZA AT THE HEIGHT OF ITS INTENSITY
The Adeptus Astartes outside Terrace Two moved into the Plaza to assist his brother inside. He arrived just in time as the "Slaughter-Kin" launched another wave of formidable charges into the central structure. Fortunately, only one such declaration succeeded and amidst the ferocious close combat fighting the space marines somehow survived courtesy of a string of saving throws. In return, a single daemon fell to a well-placed blow.

Praying to the Emperor, the Black Templar closest to the Ruined Plinth charged right across the ruins into the Bloodletter stood guarding the Ancient Relic [Objective Four]. Disconcertingly the space marine was torn asunder by the "Unstoppable Ferocity" of the daemon, meaning that the Adeptus Astartes were still far from securing their prize, despite withstanding Khorne's assault upon the Plaza.
THE BLOODLETTERS LAUNCH A SECOND ASSAULT UPON THE PLAZA
With the skirmish drawing to a close, two Bloodletters positioned themselves by the Ancient Relic, one of which squatted on the eastern edge of the Ruined Plinth. A space marine managed to advance as far as the ruins itself, but was still too far away to have an impact upon control of the vital objective. However, another Black Templar in the Plaza, headed southeast towards the gruesome statue of a gargoyle, gunning down the daemon on the Ruined Plinth with an incredible demonstration of marksmanship.
A BLACK TEMPLAR ATTEMPTS TO CAPTURE THE ANCIENT RELIC SINGLE-HANDEDLY
The surviving Bloodletter by the Ancient Relic [Objective Four], realised he need only gut the Adeptus Astartes to win the day for Khorne, and so charged full pelt into the space marine, utilising his "Unstoppable Ferocity" to deliver a potentially lethal blow. Incredibly though, the Black Templar made both of his saving throws, and in return dropped the "Slaughter-Kin" with a punch packed full of the Emperor's righteousness. The day somehow belonged to the defenders of humanity...

Monday, 6 May 2019

“Skulltaker, Also Known As U'zuhl, Is An Infamous Bloodletter And Herald Of Khorne…”

"...And has been anointed as the Blood God's own Sacred Executioner."
This 28mm scale "Finecast" sculpt of “Khorne’s immortal champion”, Skulltaker, is produced by “Games Workshop” for their “Age Of Sigmar” range and comes in five "finely detailed resin" components, which proved reasonably straightforward to assemble despite the figure not being supplied with assembly instructions. “The greatest of all Bloodletters”, I plan to use U'Zhul as the leader of my Blades of Khorne warhost and tap into his “Heads Must Roll” Command Ability; which during the start of the combat phase allows a friendly Bloodletters unit to re-roll “wound rolls of 1 for attacks made by that unit.”

“Ever seeking worthy skulls for his master”, the model was primed in “Vallejo” Heavy Sienna before having all of his armour, shoulder-pads, Hellblade, helmet and cloak-trim ‘picked out’ using a combination of Gold and "The Army Painter" Strong Tone Quickshade. These areas were subsequently dry-brushed using (more) “Vallejo” Gold, whilst the Herald of Khorne’s skull-infested cloak was treated to a a couple of layers of Iraqi Sand, a downpour of Strong Tone Quickshade by “The Army Painter”, a hearty dry-brush of (more) “Vallejo” Iraqi Sand, a lighter dry-brush of White and a liberal sponging of “Citadel” Carroburg Crimson. Even after all that, the odd skull, still received a second ‘dry-brush’ of either “Vallejo” Iraqi Sand, White or both to help tie the formidably-detailed bone-adorned garment together.
"Skulltaker often goes to war at the head of the Cohort of Blood..."
“The Blooded Wanderer” is also sculpted holding a fiery skull and spine in one of his clawed hands, so in order to finish off this area as quickly as possible, I once again returned to my semi-successful recipe of “Vallejo” Heavy Orange, “Citadel” Carroburg Crimson, (additional) “Vallejo” Heavy Orange and a final fleeting touch of Heavy Ochre. However, this time round I also applied a light dusting of “Vallejo” Iraqi Sand to the ‘ensemble’ to help tie the grisly flaming trophy together.

With much of the miniature’s more fiddly detail now completed, I set about base-coating all the Bloodletter’s flesh with “Vallejo” Heavy Red and “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade. Ordinarily, I subsequently dry-brush such daemonic flesh with (more) “Vallejo” Heavy Red, but as so much of it was tightly surrounded by other colours, I decided to leave it well enough alone, and simply ‘highlight’ only the most easily accessible areas.
Imperial Death Trooper WIPs - These elite soldiers of the Tarkin Initiative have been primed and dry-brushed
Finally, I pigmented the “Slayer Of Kings” cloak and horns with “Citadel” Abaddon Black, his sharp teeth with "Vallejo" White and his forked tongue with Heavy Ochre. Both the fangs and tongue were later washed with "Citadel” Agrax Earthshade, before I painted the Bloodletter’s horn-ensconced skulls in precisely the same way as I had previously done on his other gruesome bleach-coloured trophies.

Having now finished my initial 500-point strong Blades of Khorne warhost, I thought I'd momentarily turn my attention to something far more straightforward to paint, and have assembled the six-figure contents of the Imperial Death Troopers unit expansion by "Fantasy Flight Games". These "inhuman revenants" have been assembled, primed and dry-brushed, so just need some washes and additional tiny details to be 'picked out' before they are ready for the tabletop.

Friday, 3 May 2019

“It Is Described As A Ten-Foot Cube Of Transparent Gelatinous Ooze..."

"...Which is able to absorb and digest organic matter."
This 60mm tall model of a Gelatinous Cube is produced by “Reaper Miniatures” and can be purchased as Code 77305 from their “Bones” range. Cast in a translucent “special” polymer plastic, the “ooze entry” was invented by Gary Gygax, and first appeared “in the original [1974] Dungeons & Dragons ‘white box’ set”.

Able to slide “through dungeon corridors, absorbing everything in its path, digesting everything organic and secreting non-digestible matter in its wake”, this multi-part monster was painted in sub assemblies in the hope that it would be possible to sneak a ghoulish glimpse of its recent partially-eaten prey. As a result, its ‘interior piece’ was primed using some “Vallejo” Iraqi Sand, drenched in “The Army Painter” Strong Tone Quickshade and later dry-brushed with (more) “Vallejo” Iraqi Sand.
"It is specifically and perfectly 'adapted' to its native environment..."
Any skeletal remains were lightly dry-brushed with some “Vallejo” White, whilst the odd weapon blade (whether sword or axe) was ‘picked out’ using a combination of “Citadel” Ironbreaker and Nuln Oil. I then applied a couple of washes of the shade, Carroburg Crimson, to what appeared to be a large sprawling cape, so as to suggest the raiment was actually being bleached by the creature’s digestive juices.

The sculpt also contains a couple of long-discarded shields, so the wooden ones, along with any shafts, handles or belts, were treated to a layer of “Vallejo” Heavy Sienna before being washed in Strong Tone Quickshade by “The Army Painter”. I also applied either a dab of “Vallejo” Heavy Blue or Heavy Green to the odd pouch, and subsequently shaded them with a splash of appropriately-placed “Citadel” Drakenhof Nightshade or Biel-Tan Green.
"Age Of Sigmar" WIPs - These three Bloodletters have are slowly having all their gold 'picked out'
Unfortunately, little of this brush-work can actually be seen through the Gelatinous Cube itself as the exterior sculpt of the “perfect ten feet” cube is equally as detailed with lots of dripping slime, brutally muddying the plastic’s transparency. Disconcertingly however, this was not my biggest disappointment with the model, as it proved impossible to stick together using my ordinarily-trusty “Gale Force Nine” super-glue and instead I had to resort to a hearty application of “Araldite” to bond the “living mound of transparent jelly” together. Sadly, this two-part epoxy didn’t completely cure clear, leaving a slightly frosty seam down one of the Gelatinous Cube’s sides.

Having completed my “dungeon scavenger” I have found a little time to continue progressing the next batch of Bloodletters I plan to add to my “Age Of Sigmar” Blades of Khorne warhost, as well as “Warhammer 40K daemonic force. I want to give myself as much flexibility as possible in potentially splitting up this horde into much smaller minimum-strength units, so have decided to assemble both a third standard-bearer and musician from my latest ‘Slaughter-kin’ boxed set…

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

(Lead) Mountain Musings - "World Eaters" May 2019

World Eaters WIPs - The Chaos Space Marines have been assembled and primed
A sudden, all-consuming urge in recent weeks to play the latest edition of “Warhammer 40K” by “Games Workshop” has lead to this month’s themed attempt to chip away away at my ‘lead mountain’ firmly focusing upon several miniatures set in “the distant future, where a stagnant human civilization is beset by hostile aliens and malevolent supernatural creatures.” In fact, I rather fear my devotion to the Chaos Gods of the Forty-First Millennium has actually caused me to somewhat significantly add to the tower of hard-plastic moulded sprues safely stored away in a corner of my hobby room, rather than reduce its formidable height.

Of course, the beauty of building a daemonic fighting faction based upon the Blood God is that the vast majority of its figures will also be entirely eligible for my “Age Of Sigmar” Blades of Khorne warband, so I haven’t been shy in both buying and building another load of Bloodletters armed with Hellblades. In my experience, these Slaughter-kin are easily a match for even Primaris space marines when able to engage their enemy in close combat and utilise their hand-weapon’s -3 Armour Piercing. Whilst the Crimson Death's 5+ Invulnerability Save seemingly finds favour with the dice gods time and time again…
Bloodreaper WIPs - The daemon leader has been primed, washed and dry-brushed
However, my Chaos force currently badly struggles during the "Warhammer 40K" Shooting Phase, due to none of my current infantry units carrying any sort of firearm whatsoever. Resultantly, I have decided to field a small five-figure unit of Primarch Angron’s finest Heretic Astartes, all armed with either Boltguns or a Plasma Pistol, and assembled from an old, long out-of-production, Chaos Space Marine starter set which I recently uncovered during a big clear-out.

Quite delightfully, I have discovered that this box also contains a 'conversion' sprue with which to personalise my gun-totting World Eaters into a truly recognisable Khorne-devoted force, complete with Chaos standard and all manner of extra blood-drenched iconography. Perhaps unsurprisingly, I have subsequently found myself compelled to purchase a box of the Legion's famed Khorne Bezerkers as well, so plan on predominantly pigmenting my 'ordinary' Chaos Space Marines in black and gold, so as to allow the all-red chainsword-wielding maniacs to really stand out on my tabletop.
Baba Yaga WIP - The resin figure has been cleaned with a modelling knife, primed and dry-brushed
With at least one of my options to provide my 41st-Century warriors with some firepower sorted, another potentially being a plan to include an old Khorne-covered Rhino model which I found alongside my Heretic Astartes, I have also decided to split my current Bloodletter figures in half so my army's centre consists of two daemonic units. This means I need to have another Bloodreaper with which to lead my second warband, so I have been busy assembling and priming just such a mini from the "Start Collecting! Daemons of Khorne" set.

Momentarily stepping completely away from "Games Workshop" though, I also plan to paint one of several "Spectre Miniatures" I recently acquired in order to 'game' some "John Wick" influenced skirmishes. I actually missed the Nottingham-based company's special resin sculpt of Baba Yaga at "Salute" 2019, but was lucky enough to 'bag one' from their website before the figure went out of production...