Spent some time painting the manor this weekend. Put on the base layers of dark brown and dark grey. I also created a highlight for both these colours, adding white to the base dark paints. On the palette, and when applied to the building, it looked great. But coming back a couple of hours later when it had dried the effect just wasn’t there. The tonal difference between the shades had all but disappeared.
No problem, though. I will just have to make a slightly stronger mix next time. If anything, it will just mean the building has a lot of very subtle shading and highlighting. Just not intentional subtly.
I also finished stripping the rest of the metal miniatures. Once dry I put them into basic piles. Going clockwise from the centre left we have a bunch of Wood Elf miniatures, a Dwarf Engineer, Vampire Counts pieces (mainly giant bats), the enemy character models from the Warhammer Quest expansion Lair of the Orc Lord, a couple of 40k guys, bases, random bits, and in the centre ancient Chaos Warrior parts.
They have all been dumped into plastic zip-lock bags, and are awaiting inspiration to hit.
Brad came around again yesterday and we had another game of Warhammer. He is interested in starting a Warriors of Chaos army, and I happen to have one lying around. So he took Warriors of Chaos and I took the Skaven again. We went for pitched battle again, and randomly selected and placed the scenery.
His army contained four units and three characters. Two lots of Chaos Warriors, Marauders and Chaos Knights along with a Sorcerer Lord, Sorcerer and Aspiring Champion Battle Standard Bearer. On my end I decided to take three units of 35 Clanrats, 30 Slaves, 6 Jezzails, 10 Gutter Runners, 10 Globadiers, 3 Rat Ogres and a Doomwheel. They were accompanied by a Warlord on War-litter, Warlock Engineer, Cheiftain Battle Standard Bearer and an Assassin.
I was very excited that some of the new scenery that I recently built finally got used in a battle. So excited I decided to deploy my Jezzails behind a wall. Possibly not the best position for them.
Unfortunately a detailed battle report really isn’t needed. No offence to Brad, but he played an average game at best. Mostly because he didn’t get the chance to excel, as I was sucking so bad. My Warlock miscast first turn, killing sixteen Clanrats in a calamitous detonation. When my Assassin was revealed in combat he fluffed all his attacks against the Aspiring Battle Standard Bearer. My Warlord even failed to make a real dent, both him and his unit being broken and run down in their first round of combat. The only thing that went right in any respect was the Globadier Bombardier managing to kill a half-dozen or so Chaos Warriors with a well placed Death Globe.
As a testament to how poorly I played the game only made it to the end of Turn 3. I had little hope that three Jezzails and a Doomwheel could defeat an almost unharmed 2000 point Warriors of Chaos army.
That’s not to say it was a waste in any sense. We both had fun in the game, and I learnt a few things. Firstly under the new rules the Warriors of Chaos hit like a tonne of bricks. They have a high Initiative and a large number of attacks, so facing them one on one with an army like the Skaven is going to fail. Charging in seemed pointless, and holding back to give me some more time to soften them up would probably have been the way to go.
Secondly, their magic is nasty. I probably could have done with another Warlock Engineer, or even a Grey Seer or Vermin Lord. As it was Brad could walk all over me in the magic phase, and I didn’t have the power to negate that advantage in the combat phase.
Third, I clearly had the advantage in shooting, but unfortunately Skaven shooting is a bit selective. It hits hard, but there isn’t a lot of it. In hindsight I should probably have ditched the Doomwheel and opted for a Warplighting Cannon instead. At least then I could have been killing a larger amount of infantry in every shooting phase, rather than have the Doomwheel meandering around on the flanks doing as much damage to myself as the Chaos.
Fourth, (and I actually already knew this, but it is nice to have old beliefs reinforced) sometimes stuff just goes wrong. Really wrong. Spectacularly wrong. But you just have to roll with it.
Craig came around today and we threw down in quick 1500 point Skaven vs Chaos pitched battle.
The Warriors of Chaos were sporting 5 Chaos Knights, 15 Chaos Warriors, 15 Marauders, a Shaggoth and three Exalted Champions. My Skaven were fielding a modest force of 19 Stormvermin, two lots of 25 Clanrats, 15 Plague Monks, 5 Warplock Jezzails, two lots of 20 Slaves, a Warplightning Cannon, 2 Ratling Guns, a Warpfire Thrower, an Assassin and two Warlock Engineers. One of these Engineers was the force general, while the Exalted Champion on horse was the Warriors of Chaos’ general.
Through clever planning, and the blessing of the Horned Rat, the Skaven chose their side, and were given the honour of deploying first as well. The bulk of my force was placed on the right of the ruined hill. Clanrats hugged the rocky outcrop, with the Plague Monks and then a unit of slaves next to them. Behind these troops waited the Stormvermin, protecting the Warlock Engineer general. On the left of the hill was the other Clanrat unit, also loitering close to the feature. In the mid of this section I placed the other slave unit, and near the back of the table, the Warplightning Cannon. On the hill I placed the Warplock Jezzails, giving them a good view of the battlefield. On the ground in front of them stood the second Engineer.
The Warriors of Chaos were evenly spread out, with the Shaggoth and Knights on their right flank, and the Marauders and Warriors on their left. The armies general rode with the knights, while the standard bearer threw his lot in with the Chaos Warriors. The third character bulked out the Marauders.
Overall, the battle was closely fought, with both sides getting the upper hand on a number of occasions. The Skaven managed to funnel the Chaos away from their left flank and towards the centre of the table. The plan was to bunch them up and fire on them, though this plan was hindered by catastrophic failures of multiple shooting units. The Warlock Engineers did manage to cause the Chaos Warriors to flee early on, though, effectively denying the Chaos one of their heavy hitters for much of the game.
The Shaggoth consistently supported the Maruaders, flank charging the enemies this unit was engaged with on multiple occasions. It was eventually taken down in the later turns by consistent Jezzail fire.
While killing machines on paper, the Chaos Knights managed to perform poorly against one of the Clanrat units. This was compounded when an Assassin revealed himself and took the general out in a challenge. While the Clanrats ultimately lost the combat and broke, this was still a coup for the black clad Eshin.
In the end, the battle was extremely close. The Skaven only had the Stormvermin and two Warlock Engineers left at the end, while two Warriors of Chaos and two Chaos Knights remained on the Chaos side. The Chaos had also managed to capture two standards, while the Skaven boasted points for killing the general, and capturing a table quarter. With points totalled up, the game came to a draw, leaning slightly in the Skavens favour.
Maybe next time!
Todays exciting installment is links to cool stuff! Yeah, ok. I haven’t worked on my Skaven any. Suck it up.
First lets look at this cool Lizardman army by WarplockMonkey on The Warhammer Forum. He has a really interesting duel theme going. The major theme is ‘birds’, with a lot of the monsters and accessories converted to have avian traits. The second, and slightly more subdued, theme seems to be ‘purple’. Almost everything has purple included on it, to tie the whole army together. And it looks really good.
It probably also helps that this guy is an amazing sculpter and converter. There is that too. Even his non-Lizardman pieces in the link are impressive. A true talent.
The other army I want to draw attention to is this Nurgle army by JGraham, also from The Warhammer Forum. There are some really strong thematic ideas, as well as good painting and modelling abilities shown in this army. Plus, it has an awesome army display to top it all off. I especially like how he has given non-Nurgle based unit choices a Nurgle flavour, to make them fit into his armies visual style. Excellent work.
Brad, Jarryd and Craig came around today to fight the first battles of the campaign. Yes, we are undertaking a campaign, run mostly by Brad. It’s a good idea, as it will give me a chance to run some of my Skaven troops and see what I am going to need. In my usual style I forgot to take pictures of my first battle, and then just couldn’t be bothered taking any of the second one.
The special rule for this campaign is that armies are made up with one less Rare or Special option than normally allowed. I decided to forgo my Rare choice and build an army a little different to what I normally take. I had a Chieftain, 2 Warlock Engineers, 2 lots of 20 Clanrats, 2 lots of 20 slaves, 5 Globadiers, 3 Rat Ogres and 5 Warplock Jezzails.
First I played a 1000 point battle against Jarryd’s Warriors of Chaos. It was a fairly solid list, 2 units of wolves, 2 units of warriors, a unit of knights, a spawn and a sorcerer. Mu initial shooting and magic made a couple of big holes in his army, killing 2 knights and causing some wolves to flee. A unit of slaves went up against the spawn and managed to beat it after three turns. The rest of my army pretty much fell apart, but not after doing a bit of damage to some of the wolf units and a Chaos Warrior unit. In the end I was Massacred, but only just. If my Globadiers had of performed a little better I think that might have tipped the game in my favour, but as it was, they were more effective at killing themselves than the enemy. I also probably don’t need to shoot into my own unit quite so over zealously. In one round of shooting I did more damage to a slave unit than I did to the Chaos Warrior unit it was fighting, pretty much obliterating any chance it had of winning the combat.
Next I fought Brad and his Orcs & Goblins. 1 Boss, 1 Shaman, Wolf Riders, a Squig Herd, a chariot, Boyz, Night Goblins, Snotlings and Squig Hoppers were his go. I have not played against Squigs before. Man! Do they ever hurt! I wasn’t quite expecting such a diminutive fungoid creature to break out such mean stats. I realise they are little bouncing killing machines, but this was painful! I did equally as poorly against Brad, though this time I think this was due to luck and not Brad’s generalship. He used his units sensibly, but there were a couple of times that it all just went his way in spades. Multiple units rolling 6 for Animosity in a single turn and my Globadiers continued inability to hit anything are but a few. This game was a lot closer, though. While his main units ripped into my units pretty badly, my smaller peripheral troops did some shocking damage. A single Warlock Engineer is responsible for causing (what was left of ) the Orc Boyz to run from the battle.
I’m pretty happy with the list, and how it performed. The Rat Ogres could probably be taken out and replaced with something like more Clanrats or Plague Monks. At such a small size I think putting in some more ranked units would be a better idea, and the Rat Ogres just kind of peter around at the moment. I could probably also replace the Jezzails or Globadiers with more ranked units. I like the Globadiers more, but the Jezzails did a much better job against the Chaos and the Orcs. I think two units of Slaves might be one too many for 1000 points, but coming to a total of 80 points for the two of them, it seems silly not to take them. Keeping the Warplighting Cannon out of the battle was a good idea, though. While it can be a powerhouse of a machine, the absence of larger, heftier target for it to shoot at negated it’s overall usefulness. Sure, shooting 20 guys in a line is great, but is it worth risking 100 points over?
Yes, it has been a little while. Six days or something. And to be honest, not a lot has been achieved on the miniature painting front. Unfortunately real work keeps getting in the way. If I can just get it finished, then I can go back to painting Grail Knights.
Yesterday was Australia Day, so a public holiday for all! Brad, Jarryd and Craig came around for some battles. Australian indeed!
Myself and Brad ran our proposed tournament lists. While setting up for my first battle against Jarryd’s Warriors of Chaos, I noticed a slight oversight on my part. I had only purchased three Grail Knights! I usually like to run about 5, as they are fairly hard hitters. Oops!
The battle against Jarryd was interesting. He had taken an army that leaned towards Nurgle, making a bunch of units hard to hit, but causing -1 to my WS. He had a very different Chaos army than I had fought against previously. No War Shrine, lots of Warhounds and a couple of Spawns. The Warhounds were dispatched fairly easily, but the Spawn were neigh impossible for me to beat. I didn’t have trouble hitting them, but wounding them proved to be a challenge.
If I had managed to get a knight charge on one, that probably would have been fine. But Jarryd managed to consistently move his Spawns 11″ across the table for two turns, something I did not expect. The initial 11″ inches was fair enough, but to roll 11″ for times in a row for movement. Unheard of!
It was a very close battle, with both sides losing masses of troops. In the end, we came up with a draw, which was an acceptable outcome. The new Warriors of Chaos seem quite hard and versatile, especially with the selection of gifts and magic banners they can use to augment their lower numbers.
Next I fought Brad, who is currently running a ‘Dark Elf’ army. I say ‘Dark Elf’, because his army on the table was made up of not even half Dark Elf models, most being High Elf stand ins for troops he promised he was “sticking together”.
I deployed with the bulk of my army weighted towards the left flank. There were some woods on the right flank that created a funnel, and I figured that some archers and the Knight Errant should be able to hold that area, especially since I know Brad is always keen to avoid funnels. I probably should have committed some more troops to the left, though, like the Pegasus Knights and the three Grail Knights.
This is about half way through the battle. Those Bretonnians at the bottom of the picture… they are dead. The Dark Elves seemed to be cutting swathes through me, and I largely couldn’t do anything about it. Part of this was the large number of armour and ward saves I failed, but it wasn’t just that. I don’t think I had the right troops fighting the right Dark Elves, which isn’t surprising really, given that I have never faced the Dark Elves before.
The Hydra was causing havoc on my peasant troops who, because the generals unit had been sliced up by magic and run off, were cut off from any access to higher leadership. Charges made against the terror causing Hydra were largely useless as the troops broke and fled. Not good!
This is the end of the battle, where only both of the units of Peasant Archers are left alive, and the Grail Knights are fleeing for theirs. All other troops have been eliminated.
The men of the match have to be the Grail Knights who, even though there were only three of them, managed to hold out for a couple of turns against Executioners and Black Guard. In addition to this the three Pegasus Knights managed to kill the Witch Elf Hero with the Cauldron of Blood (before they themselves were wiped out), so there were small victories for the Bretonnians.
I think my army composition will have to change slightly, but I have a better handle on how the Dark Elves operate now. My Bretonnian army is quite large and while this worked well against the Warriors of Chaos it was less effective against the Dark Elves. My current thinking is to take out the second unit of Men-at-arms, as well as the Mounted Yoemen, and boost the Grail Knights up to 5. I might also bring the Peasant Archers down to 10, so I have two units of 10.
Brad seemed to think I needed a Lord character which, given the increased liklehood of terror causing units, seems like a good idea. The extra leadership could make all the difference. I think it might be worth bumping the Damsel up to a Level 2 mage. At the moment she is equipped with a Dispel Scroll and Icon of Quenelles, but I think it might be worth giving her a little more casting power. The only problem is that there is only one item in the Bretonnian Magic Items list that effects the Damsels casting, but it is useless now that the magic rules have changed. Really now, the Damsel only has a chance of successfully casting if the opponent has next to no magic what-so-ever. Obviously this will be fixed, but as it stands, it is very crippling. The best the Bretonnians can hope for is a slightly robust defensive Magic Phase.
Really I need to run more knights, but there are a couple of problems with this. One, I don’t have enough knight models to do that. And two, I don’t really want to do that. But it is looking more and more like it will be a nessecity. I’m hoping that I can get a happy middle ground, push up the few unit I have so they are a little larger without doing away with all the peasant units.
I really think the tournament is going to be a test for my army.
It’s been rather hot here the last couple of days, so the painting has been slow. It’s hard to paint when it dries up on your brush before you even get to apply a stroke.
I managed to get the grey on the banner done, so they are edging towards completion. Because of this, I played some WAR instead. Joined a warband of Destruction guys, and ran into Particle, my brothers character. We took some RVR capture points, and defended one of our castles.
We came a bit unstuck when we tried to actually take a castle. Made it into the keep ok, but got stuck trying to push up the ramp. I was told that the tanks weren’t AOEing and pushing the guards back so everyone could get up. And then it started to lag. Lag really badly. I even got resurrected, only to be killed mere seconds after. And to top it all off, my respawn counter didn’t disappear when I resurrected, so when I died again, it ticked over and I respawned. So I was stuck outside, and the guy trying to run the attack got shirty. So I logged off.
The guys over at Chamber of the Everchosen (is that right?) have released another End Times ezine. You can download it here. I have no idea why it is so big, and to be honest, I don’t know if it is worth it for the size. I keep throwing my manifesto on ezines out there, but I am largely ignored. It is a burden, being this awesome.