Saturday, September 24, 2016

Good Bye Antares, Hello Hordes!

Hi everyone,

I think the title is very clear!  I have finally given up on The Gates of Antares. The game is just not taking root down here.  After playing several demo games no one seems interested in investing in a force.
It is a true pity, because I really liked the game mechanics, even though the quality of the metal figure castings was not very high.  The reasons offered from my friends are that the figures are all in metal and not in plastic, or that they look too comical for hard core sci-fi game. Although everyone likes the Concord and the Senatex.

Some have complained that the rules are too complicated, and a lot of gamers do not like the D10 system.  Personally, I do not think they are more or less complicated than most rules and I think the D10 system is OK - but there you have it.

Personally, I was a bit disappointed with the quality of the metal Algoryn castings, and I would have preferred plastic, but it was not something I was not prepared to overlook in order to get a dedicated gaming group together.  Unfortunately it did not take root.

On the other hand, everyone down here is excited for Warmahordes. Mark 3 is the current rage and everyone seems to be playing it.  So as the saying goes, if you can't beat them, join them!

Therefore I have sold off all my Algoryn force - in fact I have already found a buyer overseas.  I will keep the plastic Concord for now just in case the game miraculously takes root.

Since I sold a red army, it is only right and proper that I replace it with another red Warmahordes army.  So I have decided to go with the Skorne.  The other (more pertinent) reasons are that they seem to be the underdog in this new edition. So they pose a challenge - that should keep things challenging and interesting.

The other reason is that the Skorne character is diametrically opposite to mine.  I am not cruel to animals; do not believe in pain or self-infliction; have no desire to conquer for the sake of conquering; and I do not like torture of any kind.

I have always taken armies that I feel a resonance or kinship towards, it is refreshing to buy and collect an army that is so different.

I have already made some purchases.  I bought the 2 old Skorne Battlegroups at a 30% discount and the new one at a 20% discount from Wayland Games.  I also had the metal Bronzeback I had bought for a diorama that never panned out. 

Therefore I will start from here.  I will build and paint these purchases up, then I will expand from there after doing some research into what works and what sucks.

That is all for this week.  See you in 7!  Farewell and good health.


Sunday, September 18, 2016

Sylvan Heros - Part 2 - The Forest Warden

Hi everyone,

This week I tackle the Forest Warden.  This is my old Durthu model from the defunct Citadel Wood Elf range.  With this model done the phase one of this project has come to completion.

I always liked this model, and the character even more.  I was going to use him in the tree shambler unit initially, but he did not quite fit in.  Maybe it is the over-proportioned arm?

Therefore I decided to use him as a Forest Warden.  I think his old status and the look of the miniature lends itself very well to this role.  To compound on this he is also quite short when compared to the new plastic treeman kits - so I think it is the only right fit.

The model was 80% ready.  All that was left as the detailing and painting up most of the grey areas and accentuating some of the coloured areas.  So I sat down and got to it.

I have to say that I am very satisfied with how he turned out.  It only took me about eight hours of work in three sessions. So I nww have a small Sylvan army ready to do battle in a Kings of War game.  Let the best general win!

I think readers of my blog will find next week's article interesting. See you in seven.  Until then farewell and good health.


Saturday, September 10, 2016

Sylvan Heros - Part 1

Hi everyone,

With the completion of the Elf Spear Horde unit, PHASE ONE of the army I had to convert is now done.  I just have to add new units to it.  I do, though, have two characters which I need to add to the army.

The first is my Unicorn Mage Rider.  The mage is from the old Citadel range and the unicorn is from the old Grenadier range (if memory serves).  The miniature was painted 20 years ago and was ready, but due to an incident at my gaming club the unicorn's horn snapped and got lost.  So that has to be fixed.  Also the white hide of the unicorn has yellowed with time.  This is definitely the effect of the varnish.
So the first step was to fix the horn.  If you want a new horn that is strong, you have to add support, therefore I found a steel pin and inserted it into a hole I carefully drilled into the horn.
The next step was to add putty.  The strongest putty that I know of that cures rock hard is Milliput.  I have yet to find an epoxy putty that cures harder.  Granted, it is not as workable as its more waxier cousins, but you have to use the right tool for the job.  In this case it is definitely Milliput.

After adding the putty and letting in cure for several hours, it was time to sand it down and paint it up.  This was quite straight forward.

I also decided to retouch the model over all.  I was not going to repaint it, but just add some highlights and lowlights around the mage's skin and clothes and remove the yellow tint on the unicorn's hide.  While I was at it, I also decided to re-base it so it would be in line with the other units.

Next week it is the turn of the next hero character - the Forest Warden or ex-Durthu model.  Until then farewell and good health.


Saturday, September 3, 2016

Kings of War:- Elf Spears Part 5 - Finished!

Hi everyone,

The Elf Spears horde unit are finally finished!!!  This is the last of the units I had already painted that were converted to the Kings of War system.  From now on, any units I start will be new units.  I already have some plans laid out!

The last figure I had to paint up was the mounted leader.  Once again I tried to keep the paint scheme the same as the old units, but I did put a bit more work into the model, especially the horse.  It is the centre piece of the unit after all.
I should have also flocked as I attached the figures, instead of flocking in one go.  It gets all very fiddly when you try and put glue to the base from in between the models.  A lesson for next time.
I have to admit that I have fallen in love with multi-bases and I will never look back.  Not only is the army nicer to look at, but also easier to play and transport.  The future in massed ranked tabletop fantasy miniature wargames is here!
Come back next week to see what I have planned for the coming weeks.  Until then, farewell and good health.


Saturday, August 27, 2016

Bringing Back An Old Unit: Beast Handlers & Shape Changers

Hi everyone,

Does anyone remember the old Beast Masters & Shape Changers from way back in third edition Warhammer Armies?

Well, I certainly do! I also have all the figures and the original animals.  I completely forgot about them until recently when I was opening boxes looking for miniatures for the Wood Elf Spear unit I am currently updating.

I thought to myself, what a cool idea to bring them back as proxy units for Kings of War.  The beast handlers existed as miniatures, but the shape changers did not.  So I opted to use different were creatures to represent them.

The only problem with this approach is that such creatures are rare where miniature representations are concerned.  That means I could not create units of were-creatures with different poses, without a nightmare of extra work! So I opted to combine these two old unit types into one unit.

I already had a were-bear, and I found miniatures for a were-boar and a were-cat  with a company called Otherworldly Miniatures.  The following is a break down of what I am going to do in the coming weeks after I finish the Wood Elf Spear unit.

The Bear Clan

The first unit I will put together is the Bear Clan.  Initially, I was going to proxy all these units as Hunters of the Wild, but that would require putting the unit on a 20x20mm multibase.  They seemed way too cramped, so I opted for a large infantry horde multibase.  Therefore, I will have to proxy this unit instead of tree shamblers horde.

The Boar Clan

These figures are probably my favourite.  The elven boar handler just looks so badass and feral! I can't believe I forgot all about him!  This unit will be a proxy for the Hunters of the Wild unit.  I will build them up as two troop units.  This way I can use them as troops or combined as a regiment.  Flexibility is always good.

The Cat Clan

I will approach the Cat Clan in the same way as the Boar Clan, that is as two troop units and as proxies for the Hunters of the Wild. The were-cat is probably the coolest of all my were miniatures.  I remember seeing this model for the first time on Beasts of War. It is actually a were-tiger, but that wont do for a wood elf army.  The dynamic pose and ferocity was burned into my memory.  When I started looking for figures to represent my were-creatures, it was the first mini I went looking for.
Now, all I need to do is look for a variety of bears, boars and cats to fill up the unit, but I will leave that for another time and another post.  So until then, farewell and good health.


Saturday, August 20, 2016

Kings of War:- Elf Spears Part 4

Hi everyone,

I have finally started to work on the cavalry leader of the Elf Spear Unit.  This was not as straight forward as one might think.  The 'bit' of the horse gear around the mouth and the reins were very thick.  The reins were in fact ropes meant for steering chariots.

So it all had to go!  I tried to save the side flaps of the bit.  These were very nice, but they were molded into the neck.  Carving them was too rough and they snapped, therefore I clipped everything off.

I used the bit and reins of a Chaos Marauder horse.  These were very easy to cut off, but I am afraid the head of the chaos horse was beyond saving.

After adding the mouth bit parts, I extended the reins with putty and re-sculpted the lower part of the horse's mane.

The rider was far less work.  All I had to do was add an arm.  He originally came with a lance, and his arm as bent accordingly.  This would not do, so I found a replacement.  Easy enough.  I glued it on and sculpted some mail to match it as best I could to the other arm.

I also added a sheep fur saddle which I copied of a Napoleonic Cavalry officer.  I thought it would look cool.  Not so sure now, but the work is done!

The last step was to prime it grey an fix any defects that stood out glaringly after spraying.  There were no serious problems.
At this point I glued on all the rest of the models to the multibase and puttied them up.  Everything seems to be coming together nicely and as planned.

Now all I have to do is paint it!  Until that happens - farewell and good health.


Saturday, August 13, 2016

Kings of War:- Elf Spears Part 3

Hi everyone,

If you have read last week's post, I am currently working on a horde unit of Elf Spears.  I am updating the unit for Kings of War on multibases.

I finished converting the spear elves and I now have finished the painting.  Like the other figures I have painted for my elf units, the difficulty is matching the old paint job styles.  But I think I have managed fairly well.

The first miniatures I painted up in this batch are the converted spearmen. Unfortunately, I could not replicate the colour of the scalemail of the older elves. I did not even come close.  In the end I went with a compromise in colour, but I do think the miniatures still blend in.

After painting them up, I glued in the last two rows and the side ranks to the multibase and puttied up he bases.  This way is easier and allows more space to work, than gluing everything on and trying to place the putty in between the models.

Overall I think the new models blend in well and are inconspicuous unless you are actually trying to look at the individual models rather than the unit.

I also managed to finish painting up the hedge mage, as I like to call these unit based magic users.  I went for subdued patterns that are hard to see unless you look directly at the model.  This was done on purpose in order not to deflect the attention from the unit as a whole, nor to deflect the attention away fron the central figure - the cavalry model.

That is all for this week.  Join me next week as I start work on the leader of the unit.  Until then, farewell and good health to all.



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