Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Blood Angels codex review - warlord traits and relics


Now that we've finished with the various units, we will be moving on the the other areas of the book, such as warlord traits, stratagems and psychic powers. To start with we will look at the warlord traits and relics of Baal.

Warlord traits

Speed of the Primarch

If you have a tooled up combat monster of a warlord, then this is the trait for you. Having the option to always fight first or second at worst, is a great bonus for a combat character, giving you the ability to hit them before they hit you. This is one of the better trait options as well.

Artisan of war

Another great trait and one with some versatility. This trait give one weapon, not including relics, an extra point of damage. This means that you can put it on a power weapon for some extra close combat punch or a ranged weapon for some better shooting, how about a 2 damage plasma pistol with out the danger of over charging. This is one of the two that I usually go for for my warlord, the other being Speed of the Primary. 

Soulwarden

Of your going to be facing psychic heavy armies then this might be an option to use. Giving you the ability to make a dent the witch roll every phychic phase can be quite useful, however, if your facing psychic heavy armies, one deny isnt going to do much and also, why not just take a librarian? That way you get some other powers as well. To me this is a very specific trait and I think that others are better, why deny a power when you can just kill the psyker by killing it in combat with speed of the primacy or at range with Artisan of War?

Heroic Bearing

This one seems to be fairly standard across most armies in one form or another and grants you the ability to ignore morale around your warlord. In some armies, such as guard, this makes sense but for marines with there automatic morale re-roll anyway, it seems like over kill. Unless your planning on taking heavy casualties, this trait is not one that I would use.

Gift of Forsight

Again, one of the more standard warlord traits, granting the ability to ignore woulda on a 6+ or if you have the black rage ability, on a 5+. Now, I'm in two minds about this one, as having played against nurgle armies several times, the power of disgusting reliance is amazing, the amount of time I have poured enough fire power to wipe out a unit, only to see one or two models removed. However. I seem never able to make a 6+ save on my death company. I think it could be useful on a very combat orientated character to help them survive but if you have a combat warlord then I would be taking one of the first two traits and not this one. This is really a trait to use if you really cant find a use for the first two on this list.

Selfless Valour

This is another common trait and again one that I think will see little use. This trait gives you the ability to perform a heroic intervention from 6 inches away. Now this suffers from the problem that it is best used by a combat orientated character but there are two other traits that are significantly better for such a character. While heroic interventions are useful, I'm not sure that the extra this trait gives you really makes that much difference. Overall this is potentially the weakest trait here but it can still have it's uses.


So thats the warlors traits and as usual there a mixed bag, some good and some not so good. Next up are the Relics of Baal.

Hammer of Baal
This replaces a models thunder hammer and while it still has the standard hammer profile, it looses the -1 to hit. This may not seem a lot but in the right hands it can make quite a difference. The standard build right now seems to be the smash captain, armed with a thunder hammer. With this version he is hitting on 2's re-rolling 1's. This makes it pretty reliable at damaging whatever it's hitting. This is a strong relic for a heavy hitting combat character.

Angles Wings
Now, while the hammer above is good for hitting, this relic is very good at getting you in to combat. This is the other option for the smash captain, as it replaces the models jump packs and allowed you to re-roll charges but also stops your opponent from over watching! This is my usual choice of relic, on a lieutenant, supporting a Chaplin and the death company. Charge in the lieutenant and shut down the overwatch before charging in the rest. Against some armies, such as nurgle Desmond, it's not very powerful, against others, Tau, it can be very powerful. For me this is one of, if not, the best relic here.

Veritas Vitae
This relic appears in almost every codex under one name or another and grants the ability to regain a command point every time you use a stratagem. With a 1 in 3 chance of regaining a stratagem it can be useful but you could go all game without regaining a single command point. For me, I wouldn't take this relic as my main chance but then you have to think about whether it's worth spending a command point (one you cant regain) on getting it as a second relic.

Gallians Staff
This relic makes more sense now than it did when the codex was released, due to the changes to smite in chapter approved. If your spamming smite then this won't really make much difference but if you have just a couple of psyker then this will help you get the second or third smite off. I don't really think that this is the best use of a relic but if you want to get smite off reliably, then this is the one to go for. 

Archangles Shard
This relic is very specific, too specific I think. If you are going to be facing lots of big beasts then it could be worth it, but without any strength bonus, you'll still struggle to wound in the first place. This is not a relic in would recommend or one that I see being used a lot either. 

Standard of Sacrifice - Ancient only, 6" models gain 5+ fnp
This relic ifls for the ancients only and along side the standard abilities, it also grants a small "FNP" bubble. This is a good little bonus and as you are usually going to put your ancient with one of your more powerful units, it could be a good way of keeping them alive a bit longer. 

Now, one of my biggest grumbles about the whole book, the fact that successor chapters have a limited selection of relics, as in the Archangels Shard and ………., well, that's just it. yes, successor chapters can only take the Archangels Shard relic and nothing else. This to me is not good. I can see why you could not get certain relics, which to me means the Veritas Vitae but the others? I'm sure someone else could have forged a master crafter thunder hammer or jump pack and I'd be surprised if other chapters don't have a standard that they revere, maybe the first banner ever used by the company or one that was present at a particularly important event in there history. I understand the significance of the Swords but I still feel that it is an unnecessary  restriction. Luckily, my local group allows me to run my Eagle Knights successor chapter as de facto Blood Angles and therefore use all of the relics. Which is nice of them.

Friday, 10 August 2018

Completed Dagr Ormr models

Following on from previous posts, I though that I would show off the completed models for the Dagr Ormr scions. There are not many models here, as I have only completed two of the box sets that I have, one being a 20 man dreamforge Eisenkern stormtroopers and the other being GW's own Militarum Tempestus Scions. I have another 35 more models to paint up, which are going to be next up on the paint table, as soon as I finished the last of the Hjaltland LI.

Again, these were based the same as the hildasey PDF, using the same technique. I forgot to mention previously that I had also added some stones to the bases of some of the models, to add a little bit of detail. The stones were also to mimic the stones\gray areas that are visible on the mat.

The completed models, split down in to there squads. Blue troop, yellow troop and red troop at the back. The command squads, black and white at the front, along side green troop Sgt. Finally, front and centre, the company commander.

The squads at the rear are table legal, with blue and red troop consisting of 5 scions each, including a Sgt, vox and 3 riflemen. Yellow troop in the middle are 8 strong, with sgt and vox, missing only the two special weapons. 

The command squads on the other hand are not table legal. Command squad white consists of 2 hotshot volley guns and a vox, while command squad black consists of just a medic and flamer. The other figure is the lone member of green troop, in the form.of the troop Sgt.

A slightly day-glow picture of the commander. While the colours are wildly out of whack, it's does show up the stones on the basing.

A better picture. Its a shame that I didn't get a picture of the back, as I have added some nice details to the base, in the form of a helmet, lasgun and water bottle that have been discarder. I still like this model a lot and i'm very pleased with how it has turned out.

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Blood Angels codex review - Flyers


This is the final instalment of the units from the Blood Angels codex before I move on to the other parts of the book. This will be a short one today as we will be looking at just the 3 flyers in the book. First up is the newest of the three. 


Stormhawk Interceptor

The Interceptor is designed, as its name suggest to act as an interceptor, targeting other flyers more that it targets ground units. It can be geared up to take out ground targets by swapping out its anti-flyer weapons but I think that it is as an anti-flyer that it really excels, especially as its cousin, the Stormtalon is really designed for ground attack. With this in full anti-flyer role and by that I really mean, anti-fly keyword, it can be a real threat. For me, I would only ever take this in this role and I would probably only take this if I was taking it as part of the Air Superiority Wing Detachment with some of the other options. If your in a flyer heavy meta, then this would be worth taking on its own, but I think that it works best in support of the other flyers. 

Stormraven Gunship

This is the big one, both in size and points. It is the only flyer with transport capacity, including a Dreadnought! When armed to the teeth, this is a very strong unit, able to kick out a significant amount of fire power, more so than pretty much any other non-superheavy unit in the game but it will cost you as well. It has its role as it is a transport and can be very useful for getting troops around the field quickly but it is also a significant bullet magnet for your opponent. I would love to own one of these craft, arm it to the teeth and fly my assault marines and furioso dread around the field but a) a don't have a furioso dear and b) I really cant afford/justify having one in my collection. In my opinion, if your looking for just one marine flyer, then this is the one to get.

Stormtalon Gunship

Lastly we have the Stormtalon, while similar to the Stormhawk, it does fill a very different role, that of ground attack and at this it does excel. Its a shame that it doesn't have power for the machine spirit or similar but with strafing run, it does make up for it a little. Again you can arm this for taking out flying targets, but really, this is best used for taking out ground units, especially infantry models in base form. It can be upgraded to a dedicated anti-armour hunter and this is what I would do if I had one. There are lots of other units that can take out infantry but being able to manoeuvre around the table to take down the heavier elements of your enemies army with almost impunity is great. While I do really like this flyer, as I said above, if your looking for just one flyer, I would go for the Stormraven, for it transport and its versatility, but if you have the cash and this need, an Air Superiority Wing Detachment with one of each of these units in would be a really great asset to have and would enable you to take on any threat that you might face. If you really have the money a full 5 stron wing, with two Stromhawks and two Stromtalon, one of each configuration and a Stromraven wound be amazing but very expensive to own!

Friday, 3 August 2018

Basing

After posting up about the quickshade, I though I would post up a little bit about how I based my models. It's not the most comprehensive guide to basing and probably isn't the best but it works and I did watch a few youtYou videos before I started, well after I had done a couple of models, which didn't turn out quite sparsely based with the flock.

The plan was simple, lay down a brown base paint, to give it an earthly look, although I think that a gray might have suited the battle mat better and is something I may try with my marines.

For my guard though I started with Revell XXX and added some detail with a few stones. I didn't do this with every model, only with just under half the models and most only had one.

The base covered in PVA glue. I used a slightly watered down mix. I don't know the exact ratio as I just added some water, pretty much at random to the small batch of PVA I was working with. I was as careful as I could be to not get any on the model itself or the rim of the base, however I wasn't that successful at times and so some remedial work was required on some models.

The basing flock, field grass from army Painter, decanted in to an old butter tub to give some space for working. 

The base loaded with flock. I dumped a load on to the base and gave it a little press down to help the flock to stock. 

I did small batches at a time, basically as many as I could fit on to the lid of the butter tub. I could have done more by just putting them on the desk but I didn't want to waste to much of the flock, as with the bases loaded right up like this, some tended to fall off everything a model was moved or a neighboring one moved. 

Once the models had been given a few minutes for the glue to set slightly before I gave them an initial shake to get rid of most of the loose material. Once this was done they were left over night to dry fully before they were given a good shake to get the last of the loose material to fall off.

The finished model.

You can probably see the base through the flock on the front of the base. This seems to happen occasionally, where for some reason the flock doesn't stick as thickly as I would like. This is one of the reasons for thinking about switching to a grey base for the marines, as the mat itself has a more grey colour to it. 

Here you can see a large majority of the Hildasay PDF, all based and ready for action. It really does surprise me how much of a difference basing up models makes. In the past, I had always though that yes it looks pretty and all but was it really worth all the extra effort when it doesn't really affect the model. Well, having spent some time doing it, the answer is most definitely yes, it does make a difference. It really does finish off the model and even with the basic basing that I have been doing here, it does really finish the models off.

Here is one final shot, of another missile launcher. This was the second one of my old metal missile teams that I based and you can see that the base is a lot better on this one and you can not see the painted base nearly as much. Personally I don't think that having some inconsistencies within the bases is a bad thing, as the matt is not consistent and nor is nature. 

Hopefully, I will be able to get the Hjaltland LI up here at some point, completed and displayed in all there glory. Although, I suppose I should figure out what I'm going to do with the fliers bases at some point.