Friday 30 March 2018

Catching up on the news!

Well, it seems like it's a good week for news or at least news that interests me, posted here on the community site (HERE). Following on from last weeks news that there will be a new Kill Team game and the preview of the Van Saar's Necromunda gang, we have been shown some more teasers in the form of a new heavier knight and sisters of battle! Yes it has finally happened!

We'll start this post with the new knight, as i want to save the best bit (aka sisters) until last. So the new knight? Well so far we have only seen one picture of it or rather video, the one released on the community page but I suspect that this will be only one of several builds, 3 I recon. This is the super heavy of the super heavy knights, a proper mini titan by the looks of it. I think that this will be quite a shooty knight, with only limited options for combat weapons, only the chainsaw, as they all have one of them. I don't think we'll see the fist option on this one. I do think that we will see new weapons, as one of the weapons in the picture looks like a plasma weapon to me. The main builds will be one with chainsaw plus other weapon. One with two long range weapons and one with 2 short range weapons, that's my thoughts anyway. With the release of Forgebane, and the Knight Armiger's, we now have a full set of knights. Small fast attack ones, middle general ones and heavy supporting ones.

Related image

I plan on getting a Forgebane box at some point, probably for my birthday or at least with my birthday money. This will start my Knightly house, which I only have a rough outline for, as I started thinking about it when the Renegade box was released. This will give me two Knight Armigers and some Skitarii and i will get some more swapping my Nercons for the Skitarii from a mates boxset. What I need to do is think about what knight I want to lead my force. The new knights look really nice, both of them are really well modelled, although the new big knight does look like its a bit Orky, with all the guns stuck all over it. I don't think that I will be looking to get one any time soon, as I think that standard knight would be a better fit for my House at the moment. I think that if you own a couple of knights, then the new one will be a good fit as a centre piece in the army.

There was also some other news in the form of Combat Roster, a new list building program that will appear on the Community site, next to the Age of Sigmar Warscroll builder. While this is a great idea, I'm not going to use it as it is only for Power Points and not for matched play points. There is supposed to be a proper app coming out in the near future but I will have to see about this, as I don't know if they will charge for it or not. If they do, I will have to see how much it is, if its cheap then I'll get it, if not then I won't bother and stick with battle scribe. The one good thing about this though, is that they designer is someone who has already designed a program to do the same thing and GW have looked at it and gone, this is good, lets get the guy on board and make it better, rather then doing what they use to do and try to sue the guy. This is another example of the new GW and again its another good move.

The next thing that I though that I would touch on the codex release schedule. We know that the Knights were going to get one, as they had the preview of the new big knight, but there interesting one is the Deathwatch Codex. This is interesting as there is the hint of being able to take Primaris Marines in mixed squads. The issue is whether you will be able to take mixed squads of old marines and new marines. This is about the only way that i would look at running Primaris marines these days, as it means that I wouldn't need many, just a couple of them and maybe only one or two of each.

The last thing to note before we get on to the big one, is that there was just a picture from an up coming White Dwarf, showing a battle between Orks and Guard. The thing that seems to have gotten people interested is that in the back of the picture is a big walker thing. There seems to be lots of views, from a new mega-dread ork walker to the fact that its just a looted Dreadknight. I'm leaning more towards it being a looted vehicle rather than a new model but time will tell.

Image result for adepta sororitas

So, here it is, the biggest news of all. Sisters of Battle are finally getting a plastic kit or many!. Yes, it has happened and its no longer myth or legend. There have been many rumours over the time, many even said that Sisters were ready to go, just sitting in a warehouse waiting, which is obviously nonsense. Unfortunately its going to be a while until we actually get the sisters, as they are, by the sound of it, still on the drawing board. It appears that GW haven't been working on Sisters in secret at all, I'm not even sure they have been listening to the community on this for a long time either. I feel that this has come around solely due to the survey that occurred a while back. All I want to know is why it took them so long? There have been lots of people going on about plastic Sisters for years and every time there is a rumour about plastic Sisters the internet goes mental. They should have been on this years ago really but I'm not going to complain to much, instead I'm going to start saving my money. I don't plan on getting a full army of Sisters, but I will get a couple of boxes, even if to just boost the sales figures a bit and show that Sisters was worth it. The plan would be to get a small force to use in games like Kill Team and as a Patrol detachment in games. I like Sisters a lot. I just hope that they do justice to the aesthetics of the Sisters, I would hate for them to go too much one way or the other, however, with things like the Daughters of Khaine, GW really seem to have got to grips with modelling females.

Its going to be a long road until we get Sisters in hand, but i am really excited by this, especially as they say they will keep us up to date with where they are in the process and potentially give us input in to the actual models. This is a great step for GW, even if it is a bit late!

Tuesday 27 March 2018

Killteam and Necromunda news

Now, i know that I'm a couple of days behind this announcement (OK, its actually over a week!) but i wanted to wade in with my thoughts on some of it. The original announcement was made on the Warhammer Community site a few days ago, HERE if your interested in the original.

While there are several different items mentioned on the post, including Shadespire, Sigmar and Blood Bowl, there were only two items that i really wanted to talk about, which if you haven't guess from the title, were Kill Team and Necromunda. 

I'll start with Necromunda, as i have less to say about this and surprisingly i got less excited about this announcement. The news from the under hive was the release of the 4th faction (I'm not including Gene Cults here) in the form of the Van Saar gang. Now i have been looking forward to the release for quite some time and have said to various people in my local club that i was not getting in to Necromunda until the Van Saar gang was released. However, i have mixed feeling about the new models, and in some respects i am leaning towards the Orlocks gang, which to be honest have always been a close second on my list. I remember the Van Saars from the days of old, when they looked like this;

House Van Saar

Now, don't get me wrong, i do feel that GW have really got the new Van Saar gang right, i love the look of the weapons, the high tech look to them, i especially love they guy with the shield (below), a proper force field looking thing as opposed to the traditional slab style shields. 

The video on the Warhammer Community site (HERE) also does a really good job of showing off the models. There are also some good shots of some of the models at this site (HERE). However, there is two minor issues, one that i think will easily solved, the other may prove a bit harder to solve.

The first issue, that i think will be solved easily, is the ponytails. I mean, really? Ponytails? I'm hoping that these are really some sort of data cable/tether, but i have a feeling that they really are just ponytails. I really think that they look very odd and i don't really like them. If they are data tethers then i can live with it, but if they really are just ponytails, then they are coming off. So that's the simple one. The other issue, which i think maybe a bit more complex to sort is the masks. Yes, these masks go with the high tech look and feel that the Van Saars should have, as that is what they are all about, but i just think that the bug eye look is odd. Now it maybe the colour scheme that GW have chosen and by the time that i get around to getting a gang of Van Saar, there should be lots of different paint schemes out there that other people have made up, so i should be able to get an idea of what looks better.

I haven't seen anything about the rules for these boys yet, so that may change what i think, but I'm expecting lots of fun and exotic weapons, and they should be a very shooty army and not very good in close combat. I plan on loading these guys up with lots of long range weaponry and no much in the way of pistols, and just sit back and wait for the enemy to come to me, which will hopefully mean i will have lots of turns to gun them down, before sprinting forward to do what ever i need to do for the mission. I'm sure that there will be times i will have to move forward, but i will deal with that as and when i need to. 

In other necromunda mews, which i touched on above, was the release of rules for Gene Cults. This was really good and fits right in with the setting of Necromunda and i am hoping that this will be the start of several sets of White Dwarf rule sets for Necromunda that will include Chaos Cults and also Adeptus Arbites or even Imperial Guard forces. I don't think there should be any rules for things like marines or full Tyranids, but something like a Guard based PDF force would be good, although i suspect that we will only get some form of rules for Chaos Cults and nothing else. I hope that Adeptus Arbites become a fully fledged faction in there own right, as this would be very cool, and will probably make me wish that i had not sold the few models that i had, although they will look tiny next to the new models! The main reason i want Chaos Cults is that i have loads sitting around unused from the Dark Vengeance box set and they would be a good cheap alternative army to my main gang (Van Saar) in games. 

I will wait for the rules for Van Saar to drop sometime soon and despite my reservations about some the models looks, I'm still excited by the release.

The next thing i want to cover is the new Kill Team. I really likes playing kill team in the past, although i usually just played the basic setup and didn't go in to any form of campaign setup. I haven't played any games for quite a while and i was wondering what was going to happen with the release of 8th as a number of the rules for specialists are now defunct, as the universal special rules now no longer exist. While many of the rules could be carried over with a few minor tweaks, it appears that they have basically re-written the whole game. While at the moment there doesn't seem to be a lot of information going around, there is some bits and pieces. The biggest thing that i noticed from the announcement on the Community page, is the fact that they say the game doesn't use the 40k rule set. So the question is, is this every part of the game or just the core mechanics? are we going to see the return of templates, a la Necromunda, or will weapons still be the same, just the core mechanics will work differently, to represent the model based play style, rather than the unit based style of the 40k game. The other things that i noted were, that it seems that pretty much every faction will be represented, although whether there will remain some of the restrictions, such as no 2+ saves, will remain, is up for debate. The also seem to be a command point system, similar to the way that 40k works, which would make sense. There are also still going to be specialists, however, they look like they are going to work in a very different way to the old system, i don't think that you will be able to pick to the same extent that you did, which i think will be a shame, but i don't really know, as all that we have seen is a few blurred screen shots taken from the video. The original video quality does  not seem good enough to get clear pictures, which is understandable, they want to tease us, not give everything away.

Image result for kill team 40k

I have already been thinking about possible kill team options for my forces but its still quite hard to really settle on an idea when you don't know what the options are really going to be. I am really excited by this though, as it will hopefully be able to give me my 40k fix but at the faction of the time and space, i have already been chatting with a friend, who doesn't get to play much with family commitments, about meeting up for a game over lunch. If the format stays the same, this could be a real possibility and may even allow us to get a proper narrative going. 

Above I mentioned about using some spare Chaos Cultists in Necromunda, well, I'm hoping that i may be able to pull double duty with them and form them in to a Kill Team force as well, along side some Chaos Marines that i have knocking around, give myself some options, other than guard and Marines. I will be interested to see how they work out the kill teams for the new edition, as the way it worked out before, with teams of 200 points (or was it 250?) meant that for a guard list you could take nearly 50 blokes, with a whole bunch of conscripts. Granted you weren't going to kill much, but you could swamp the whole arena and stop your opponent doing pretty much anything. Even with standard guard you could still seriously out number your opponent.

I don't know when we'll hear more about Kill Team, but i hope its not to long, although the list of things i want to buy from games workshop is getting longer by the day, with Forge Bane, an Imperial Knight, Van Saars gang and now the Kill Team stuff! Oh well, at least GW are getting things right these days and releasing stuff we all want to buy!

Friday 23 March 2018

Why i collect Imperial forces

I saw a post a short while ago on another site describing the reason why he collected Chaos and more specifically Nurgle Chaos Marines and it got me thinking, why do i collect Imperial forces and more specifically why do i favour the Imperial Guard?

To start with, let's have a quick recap of my armies. I have a;
Guard Infantry (finished)
Guard Mechanised (unpainted but complete)
Tempestus infantry (unpainted but complete)
Blood Angels (finished)
Dark Angels (unpainted but complete)
Space Wolves (part build and not painted)

So, not a single xenos or chaos force amongst them, although there are a few repurposed chaos models, but why?

When i thought about this post, i though it would be an easy post to write but now I'm actually writing it, it's proving to be quite a bit trickier than i thought.

I have always enjoyed building and playing with models, starting off, as many children do, with Lego, before moving on to Lego Technic and also Airfix kits. My first introduction to the world of wh40k came when a school friend of mine turned up one day with a box of models he had purchased from a car boot sale. This would have been around the release of 2nd edition, so 1993 or 1994. The models in question were RTB01 marines, painted red. They were, if i remember correctly painted to what was then a good table top standard and i thought that they were awesome, in a way only a teenage boy can. From there i persuaded my parents to buy me the starter box.

The box came with 20 marines and a whole bunch of orks. I just followed the suggestions for the orks, as i didn't really care about them, but i spent quite a bit of time thinking about and reading about the marines. I didn't want red, or Blood Angles, as my mate had them. One of the other boys started looking at ultra marines, but my imagination was caught by a more feral looking mob, in the shape of the space wolves. So i started to collect these, gaining over time a squad of half metal long fangs and a rhino, along with possibly a few other bits. By this time i had started frequenting the local GW store, usually while mum was off doing the shopping in town and i had discovered a whole world of new models, from the Eldar and Chaos through to the Imperial Guard. It was around this time that i came across the new Imperial guard boxes, in the form of the Catachan Jungle Fighters, Cadian Shock Troops, Tallarn Desert Raiders, Valhallan Ice Warriors Mordian Iron Guard and the Attilan Rough Riders.

These models grabbed my attention straight away and the various Space Wolves models i had were forgotten about. I don't really know why they grabbed me but they did. The Eldar didn't appeal, don't really know why but they never have. Orks are cool but to random for my liking. Chaos did appeal, but i didn't like the look of the at the time, all the spikes and stuff just didn't look right to me. Tyranids and the genestealer cults were too alien looking for me. Which at the time, left just squats. While i loved many of the squat vehicles and even started an epic scale squat army, on the 40k table top, i just didn't like the way they played.

The guard were so familiar, yet so different at the same time. I loved the Leman Russ and the Basilisk, and the variety of troops that were available. I ended up with 2 and a bit squads of Catachans, a Valhallan squad and 2 Cadian squads, along with a number of rouge trader Imperial army soldiers. I liked the play style as well, which has changed a bit but is still basically the same. I still remember being able to drop off your heavy weapons team from the main squad, forming a mini firebase while the other 8 moved on. I still love the look of the guard over all the other forces, even the more recent ones and the modern play style works for me.

So, after all that rambling, what i'm trying to say, is that when i started this hobby many many years ago, there were not the same number of factions available as there are today and of those that were available there was really only 2 that caught my attention in terms of aesthetics and that remains pretty much the same today. It also happens that the play styles of these two forces also goes along with my own ideas and understanding of tactics, making them a natural fit for me.

I have met many players who are very cautious about loosing men and machines, who plan every move in order to maximize returns for minimum investment. Which in general is a good way to play, its not really the way i play though. Guard to me always has been about throwing bodies at things. Need to hold an objective? Throw a squad at it. Need to slow down that monster? Throw a squad at it. But what if they get killed you ask? Easy, i'll throw one of the other 20 squads at it. Its not about loosing men with the guard, its about what you loose them for. As long as they do something useful before they die, its all good.

That's the real reason i still love the Imperial Guard, in a universe of high technology and super soldiers, there the simple solution, where 9 times out of 10, the answer is "throw more men at it".

Tuesday 20 March 2018

The next project.......

With the Hjaltland LI and the Eagle Knights finished, not counting the extra troops or units that I'm going to be adding, it is time to.look at the next project. I have several projects that need doing, the Hrossey Yeomanry, the Stone Dragons and Dark Guardians, along side the rest of the Inquisitorial forces but i have decided that the next project, that will form the bulk of the summer painting project will be the Dagr Ormr and their supporting Hildasey PDF.

So what will this project consist of? Well, the Dagr Ormr already have a number of units painted up, although this firms only about a quarter of the force. The rest will have to be painted up, a total of about XX figures. The other half of the force, the Hildasey PDF only have a couple of test models part painted, so they will need to be finished of along side the XX models that form the rest of the force. 

The box of models to paint

There are currently 4 holes in the force, four very Taurox shaped holes that is. I have been waiting for Anvil Industries to release there Taipan APC, which looks a lot better than the GW Taurox and will fit nicely with my Dagr Ormr models. They were hinted at being released before last Christmas, but there doesn't seem to be any sign of them, not even a rumour, which is a little disappointing. I will continue to paint the the force anyway and just not worry about them for now. 

So what does the force actually look like, well, it looks something like this:

Militarum Tempestus force

2x Tempestus Primes

2x Command squads

3x 10 man Scion Squads, all with 2x special weapons

3x 9 man Scion Squads, all with 2x special weapons

4x Taurox or similar, when i get them

Astra Militarum force

1x\2x company commander

2x vet squads with shotguns

5x\6x heavy weapons Squads​

1x\2x platoon commander (?)

The Militarum Tempestus force is set in stone, as that's all the models i have, and I'm not going to buy any more! The Astra Militarum force is less set and i plan to have some flexibility in it as well. With the current list i will field 5 or 6 heavy weapons squads depending upon how many vets squads or platoon Commanders i take. Less vets, means more heavy weapons, although it also means less protection. I intend to paint up at least two 3 man units of each heavy weapon type, so 6 bases of missile launchers, mortars, heavy bolters and lascannons. Not autocannons though, as they are all in the Hjaltland LI. The two vet squads will have shotguns and be used solely for close protection of the heavy weapons, nothing else, that's the job of the Scions.

Hopefully this will form a nice little force. It may not be the most competitive but it's fluffy and hopefully fun to play. I'll get some initial shots of all the units up here soon, give you all an idea of what i have to paint! 

Friday 16 March 2018

Eagle Knights on parade!

So, there it is, all the Eagle Knight units built, well, for the moment anyway. Plans are afoot for 2 squads of Sternguard, 1 Librarians (on foot) and another devastator squad, probably with missiles. However, firstly a quick run through of all of the units;

Lord Commander Verreaux (Captain)
Lord Lieutenant  Bateleau (Lieutenant)
Knight Captain Cassin (Captain)
Knight's Lieutenant Haast (Lieutenant)
Company Champions Henst and Besra
Priest Bonelli (Sanguinary Priest) 
Pastors Ayres and Gurney (Sanguinary Novitiates)
Standard-Bearer Nias (Company Ancient)
Chaplains Pallas (Lemartes) and Gundlach
Librarian Chaco

Serpent Squads (Command Squad) Asturinus and Sipora
Hawk Brethren (Vanguard Vets) Princeps
Brotherhood of the Eagles Tallons (Death Company) - Gallicus, Pectoralis and Beaudouini- lead by Brother Brother Ruppell
Tactical Squads  Malaiensis and Rapax
Devastator Squad Guianensis
Assault Squad Coronatus

It seems to be that 8th edition armies generally contain lots of characters, or at least most of mine do and so do many i see on various YouTube batreps. This is true for my Guard armies as well, although there are generally a lot more troops in those!

Now, some of you maybe wondering about the names, some of you may even have picked up on the trend but if you like me and don't have a clue about "proper" names for things, all of the names of the squads are bases off the Latin names, or if your posh, the Binomial nomenclature, of various eagle's and Hawks, all of which are part of the Accipitridae family. This means that all of the names refer to actual Hawks and Eagles. The only deviation from this pattern is with Characters, who have been named after the common or English name for the Hawks and Eagles.

Next up are the photos. These are the second lot of photos i took for the army, the first lot were not very good. If you want a flavour of what the first photos were like, look at the bottom of the post at the reinforcements. These were taken on my phone, under less than ideal conditions. However, i was getting out the Hjaltland LI for there photo shoot and decided that it was a lot better conditions for pictures, so i got the Knights out as well for a re-shoot. It's not idea, as although it a lot better, the lighting could still be improved, although my camera, a Canon Rebel XSi (or 450D in the UK) with additional flash has made a huge difference. If i had had more time i would have gone and found my tripod to enable me to open up the aperture and get a better depth to the pictures. Anyway here are the new photos.

The force

The commanders, Lord Commander on the right, Knight commander on the left.

Chaplains and Librarian.

Sanguinary detachment with Priest and Pastors.

Serpent squads

Squad Malaiensis

Standard-bearer Nias, flanked by the company Champions, Henst on the left and Besra on the right with the jump pack.

Devastator squad Guianensis

Hawk Brethren squad Princeps

Squad Rapax

Assault squad Coronatus

At the back, Brotherhood of the Eagles Talon squads Gallicus, with squad Beaudouin behind.

Eagle's Talon Squad Pectoralis

A low level shot of the force.

Up next are a few more shots of the main characters.

Henst, Nias and Besra

Ayres with jump pack, Bonelli and Gurney

Chaplain Pallas (Lemartes), Librarian Chaco and Chaplain Gundlach

Finally, we have some more shots of the company command. Lord Commander Verreaux on the far right, next to the Lord Lieutenant  Bateleau and the Knight Captain Cassin on the left with his second, Knight Lieutenant Haast

As i mentioned at the beginning, there are some reinforcements inbound, although at present, there arrival time is unknown. These reinforcements will add some additional mobility to the non-jump pack equipped troops in the form of 3 Rhino transports, in the form of Heliaca, Adalberti and Chrysaetos. The Hawk Brethren will also be joined by there by 2 Sternguard Squads or the Vulture Coterie squads Fulvus and Indicus. In addition there will be two mother squads, the Devastator Squad Harpyja and Assault squad Mahery. Here are a few pictures of the reinforcements as they stand:

Rhinos at the front, devastators on the left and sternguard on the right

6 of the 10 sternguard

The trio of rhinos.

I have know idea when the reinforcements will be painted and table ready, I suspect that it could be quite a while!

Tuesday 13 March 2018

Major fluff changes!

Recently i have been going back over my chapters and regiments back stories. This is something i like to do every so often but with the release a 8th and the new guard, BA and DA codeces, it was even more necessary. Apart from the obvious changes to the BA and DA fluff from there respective codeces, i have also had a major reshuffle of my own fluff.

The various guard regiments have not received much in the way of an update, as to be honest, they don't really need one. There has been so bits added about the great rift and it's effect on the system, which is not much, as the segmentum pacificus doesn't really seem affected or even mentioned much in the books.

The Eagle Knights have had more of an update, due to the events surrounding the defense of Baal and the conning of Guilliman and his primaris marines. The 3rd, my company are not overly effected, but will be receiving reinforcements due to the chapters reorganisation. This means there will be more units to add in the future.

The biggest changes are happening around the other 4 marine chapters. I have back stories for the DA based Dark Guardians, the Imperial Fists based Emperor's Disciples, the Black Templars based Brazen Hawks and the Wolves based Stone Dragons. 5 marine forces is 3 to many really and the Hawks were dropped quite early, as i never really liked the force as i always felt i had created them for the sake of it, although i did quite like the fluff i had created. Next on the chopping board were the Disciples, as although i like the fluff and the force, the new Fists tactics didn't inspire me and i never warmed to the colour scheme, yes i could have changed the colour scheme and i had tweaked it in the past, but by this point i had fallen out of love with the Fists as a whole. This has left the Guardians and the Dragons, both of which, in terms of fluff and colour scheme, i like.

The Guardians are very different to the Knights. The Knights are about jump packs and assault, where as the guardians are about termies and bikes. To very different forces both visually and in play style. Granted the Knights have morphed a bit to include some more shooty units, such as sternguard from the Disciples, however the main principal will still be jump pack assault. The big question at the moment is the Dragons, as the Wolves codex is yet to be released. The plan is still several long range units, a contemptor dread and several elite units. When the Wolves codex does drop, which of you believe the rumours will be sometime this year, then i will firm up the list.

So, with dropping the Disciples and Hawks, i now have quite a bit of fluff that i no longer need, but that i do quite like. Solution? I'm going to delete the Disciples and Hawks pages from the blog but not before merging the Disciples and the Dragons and also the Hawks and Guardians fluff together, something I'm in the process of right now. This will mean that both of the forces will see quite a change in the back stories, but hopefully one that will add depth to what is already there. In terms of the Guardians, i hope it will tie in nicely with current events on the codex.

One thing is still bothering me though, while i don't really care about the Brazen Hawks name, it was just a random name i came up with, i have an attachment to the Emperor's Disciples name, as this was the first chapter name i came up with many years ago, when i first got back in to 40k. My guard at that time went by the name Segedunum Yeomanry, named after a local Roman fort at the time but i was not very attached to it, so it got changed to the Hjaltland LI. At that time i was intending on finishing the guard force and then creating a supporting marine force, which over many months and lots of thought, became to be called the Emperor's Disciples, taking the Imperial Fists chapter tactic, a gun line marine force supporting a gun line guard army. The Disciples have remained part of the plan ever since, being formed in to 500 point forces, the 1000 point, then full 2000 point lists, before dropping back down through 1000 and 500 point lists until they were dropped completely. But now i have dropped them, i want to keep the name going somehow, as it's something that has always been part of my 40k revival.

I had thought about merging the names as well as the fluff, but Emperor's Dragons or Stone Disciples don't ring as well as the originals. So how do i keep the name or do i not bother and just let it be one of those things that dies as the hobby progresses?