Monday, August 29, 2011

The NOVA Open

Having just survived the NOVA open, my first tournament, and the most games I have played in a decade, I am at a loss for words. It was simply fantastic. I learned to appreciate the game. I met loads of really wonderful guys, whom I hope I get to see again. There were amazing armies, powerful gamer stench, and the sort of brotherly bond that forms when groups are suffering cumulatively from lack of sleep, food, and well air.

Rather than try to put up my list, which must totally rock, since I won 4 games, and I am a truly horrid player, I'll just point out that it is the blood angels one up top. Never again will I try to finish painting models before a tournament.

John's First List of Tournament Rules:
  1. Make your list and paint your models before tournament's eve.
  2. Bring a spare shirt, it gets really hot and smelly.
  3. Make tournament games secondary to making new friends.
  4. Just toss your models in a box. They are going to break anyway by the end of the. tournament when you are too tired to not go godzilla all over them.
  5. Bring a movement tray that is also a stand, or steal a garbage can to turn into a stand, or don't bring a movement tray.
  6. Always play against Eldar and Tau. (other species may join the list when I eventually play them)
  7. Never get out of your vehicles.
  8. Play the mission, including secondary objectives. Tertiary objectives are important as well
  9. Play in the back room with the bad terrain. People are nicer backer there.
  10. Don't be a jerk, but feel comfortable asking for rules clarifications.

I want to play 40k again this weekend. How crazy is that?

Saturday, August 27, 2011

just finished painting for the nova open

Next time I'll run stuff I actually have, rather than furiously paint new units the night before! All I want now is to sleep, but first I have to learn the rules to 40k.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

earthquake + metal models

We just had a 5.6 magnitude earthquake that bounced all of my metal models around. I now have an epic rebasing/re-glueing task! I had no idea DC even had earthquakes. At least my Ikea display cabinets did not shatter. Kind of amusing that my thunderhawk got air.

+1 to finecast for not breaking like all my old metal models!

Monday, August 22, 2011

NOVA Painting Update

I made really good progress yesterday on the 5 new tanks, though towards the end of the night I started changing my list up, causing me to step back and see what I really needed. I've decided to go with 1 LR godhammer, 3 Baals, 2 Predators, and a Vindicator to round out my armor. Basically my tanks should advance as a wall of steel. Good idea or bad idea, I have no basis for comparison!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Four Blood Angels and one Flesh Tearers anything tanks

Just to throw a wrench in the whole super magnetizing speed painting of 5 anything tanks, I decided to paint one up in a Flesh Tearers color scheme. This way when I field Seth, and his assault squad, I have a place for them to ride. I mean after all, Chapter Master Seth would not borrow a Blood Angel's ride unless he was taking over the chapter. When I started this iteration of my Ba I wanted to have a few squads from each successor chapter, so this fit in nicely with the long term goal. If any of you get a chance to see my army at the NOVA open then you'll know how down to the wire the whole thing was for me. The funny thing is that I am primarily a painter, so speed painting in order to play in a GT is way out of the norm. One of the cool things is that once done, I will be able to field any combination of tanks, be they rhinos, razorbacks, predators, or baal predators. Maybe I will play the game more often afterwards.

The tanks have their armor completed now, and I have begun putting on decals and painting details. (the tanks are a little glossy from the baal red wash, but should be nice an matte at the end)

After the details are done, I'll add battle damage and dust, so it can overlap providing a little more realism. I plan to add stowage to each tank as well. Naturally the FT tank will have the most stowage and battle damage, fitting in with their background of letting their vehicles fall apart. I am looking forward to adding rusty tow lines and such to the FT chassis.

So in terms of playing the game, rhinos are not assault vehicles, but could I move them flat out and ram another vehicle hoping the rhino will explode dropping its payload of troops in front of the target? Would the troops be able to assault? It does not seem like this would be ok, but it sounds really fun to play.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

5 Tanks 2 days

My plan is to complete 5 rhino chassis vehicles this weekend. This includes the following:

1 fully magnetized FT tanks: razorback x1/rhino x1
4 fully magnetized BA tanks: rhino x4/razorback x3/ pred(any type) x2/assault cannon baal x1

Essentially I can make a lot of different combinations. I managed to build and magnetized every tank today, which includes all of the doors. I also painted the interiors, and shaded the hulls and weapons.

At this point I think this might not have been the best idea in the world, however if I am going to have transports for nova, the I must push on. The hardest part is trying to get these tanks to match my previous ba tanks. I think I am reasonably close, but it is now too dark to keep painting.

Anyone else furiously painting for nova? I rarely play the game!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Quick Storm Raven Flying Stand

I have plans to make a bunch of more interesting flying stand bases using some ruined cathedral parts that I have been casting, but in order to finish the model so I can potentially field it in the NOVA open (yes..dark angels are too hard!) I decided to go with a mostly flat ruined SM vehicle theme that I use on most of the miniature bases. Creating the base was really easy. Basically I grabbed a bunch of imperial debris and glued it onto the base as you see above. Areas were built up afterwards using GW sand and glue. There is not much to it.

The painting is just as easy. Watered down (soupy) khemri brown was applied liberally over a white base coat. The foundation paint will separate as it dries to form the dark brown/black areas in addition to the lighter areas. After the soupy paint is dry a quick dry brush of deheneb stone finished the painting. A few dabs of flock and the base was done.

I was tempted to paint the ultramarines parts blue so the base would have a little more going on, but I think keeping it mostly monotone is a good idea. Once the model is fully weathered there will be plenty to look at.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Storm Raven Pt 3

I've been having a bast painting this storm raven. I don't know why I put it off so long. Unfortunately, it is a little too large for my light booth, so I am forced to using a camera with flash.

I have most of the model painted now, including the crew, and the magnetized side hatches(more on that later). I am really happy with how the crew turned out. Those last two photos were taken with flash on, which is not terribly flattering. I think the model looks really good when set on my display board, and am looking forward to coming up with a good base for it. I was thinking of putting a wrecked ultramarines rhino, but that might make transporting the model a pain. Who wants to transport a rhino purely to use it a scenery.

I've included some army shots of the SR from a distance as per request. I cropped the photos, but the shots were taken more than 5 feet away, so you can get a feel for how it fits into the finished army.

Is Sword of Baal too cheesy a name? Mine is going to carry death company, so it is a mean S.O.B.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Pre-Shading A Stormraven P2

Once the pre-shading is done with codex grey, a light coat of blood red is sprayed all over the model. It is is important to go a little thicker over the grey areas so they end up looking red, not pink. At this stage the finished looks starts emerging. The photo above with the taped windows shows what the model looks like with the red applied. So far nothing fancy has been done.

The next step involves watering down baal red wash 50/50 with water and spraying it all over the model. I find that this ties the whole model together and makes a much richer red. When I sprayed the wash this time, I noticed that when dry, the wash left a powdery chalky looking residue in some of the crevices. This happened when I painted my Heroes of Armageddon devil dogs as well. I have no idea what is causing this, and would very much like it to go away. It ends up looking like a bit of unintended weathering. The problem is that I can not control when it happens, so it must go.

I painted the pilot using the same pre-shading technique, and think I have found my new goto method for painting blood angels. It was surprising how good he looked for 10 minutes of work. In my rush to get this model done, I should have paused to let the crew dry, but sometimes speed just has to happen, and paint just has to run.

Pre-Shading A Stormraven

I've learned a few techniques since painting my BA tanks, but since I want my storm raven to fit in with the same painting style I need to follow roughly the same recipe. The first step was to paint the interior of the storm raven and then seal it shut for the pre shading. I used an air brush and washes for the interior, selecting a series of browns up to bone white at the edges. I think that will contrast nicely with the red, and will fit this guy into my existing BA.

There are two types of pre-shading that I normally use these days. Basically one can choose to highlight the edges, or highlight the interior panels. The reason this works is that blood red is semi translucent, and when airbrushed on, some of the base coat will show through. There is also

For my Ultramarines I may use the inverse method from this one, though I will need to find a good grey primer. For the thunder-chicken here, I first primed the model black, and used fortress white around the edges of the panels. My goal was to make the lines kind of wide, so my highlight color never touches black.

Painting continues, so I'll keep you posted.

Monday, August 8, 2011

1st game in over a year

I played my first game in over a year yesterday against a really great painter, and an even nicer guy, shawn, over at I brought the army above(yes in that sexy cardboard and tape movement tray), and he brought 2k worth of demons. I've never played demons, so it was thrilling to get the chance to play one of the essential fluff armies in the 40k universe.

Shawn's army ate mine. It was fun, I learned a lot, but I really think BA are more my style. Perhaps I do have to finish off painting troops so my BA force can be a contender. I was hoping that with the relatively small deathwing force that I was going to be minimizing the trouble of transporting them and then setting them up and playing. However versus 17ish units I just could not maneuver.

Since I was railroaded\d\d\d\d\d into playing in the NOVA (thanks jawa! :) I now have to train. I'd like to think I am Rocky in this fantasy, but really I am just training so my opponents can have relatively fast and fun games. Things I learned from game one of my training sessions.

  1. I need to have all special rules and main rule book rules on hand. This includes psychic powers. I am going to make a cheat sheet
  2. Just because my army can DS does not mean it needs to. I think I should have castled
  3. My bikes are glass, they shatter on everything. Best use them as last minute objective grabbers
  4. splitting a bike squad into two units of three, makes a single weaker unit even worse
  5. If I can't play to win, I should play for the draw
  6. DW are neither hand to hand, nor long distance fire support. I have no idea where they fit.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

NOVA Dark Angels Ebay Salvage Terminators

I have my first squad of terminators built from my first ebay 40k purchase. I am pushing through despite my desire to let these guys soak in simple green for a while. I am working on the theory that having one army to play at 2k is better than no army. I'm going to get these guys finished which will give me the option of trying to then put a BA force together, or just go with what I have.

I love how clean my original DW are. These guys just quite measure up. I think the problem is that my focus has been on BA for such a long time that I have forgotten what it is like to paint a hard color.

Should I chip these guys up with chardon granite battle damage?

Friday, August 5, 2011

Painting Recipes Rock

One of the added benefits of blogging is that the blog becomes a painting recipe repository. If I hadn't put my deathwing basing recipe online, I would not have had any idea how to reproduce the bases for the 3 new squads I am adding to the army. If only I had put the recipe for putting the deathwing themselves online!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

NOVA BA Jump List and Ebay Buyer Beware!

I am still debating what to play at the NOVA open, which is a problem given that I will likely have to do a large amount of painting before hand if I want a semi-coherant list. After all, as a painter primarily I paint what I like, not what is playable. Rather than make a decision now, why not paint two armies and decide later?

Using that logic, I took my Ebay'd terminators, which had turned out to be poorly put together AoBR terminators, and began the process of dressing them up with new armaments for two new DA squads. Once completed, this will mean my DA army now has enough miniatures to support a 2k list, which gives me some options.

On the BA side of the equation I have been toying around the idea of running an all jump list using 5 assault squads, asteroth the grim, dante, and honor guard. Toss in a a chaplain and a sanguinary priest and it is a pretty sizable force. Who wouldn't want to drop 50 marines out of the sky onto an opponent. At the very least it would be fun....after all, it is raining blood angles.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

NOVA Open: What to Play

I bit the bullet while at Games Day Chicago and decided to play in the 40k Nova open. I had a little prompting by Jawaballs. The chance to throw down some games with fully painted armies sounded like fun. So how does one prepare for a GT if one is not a regular player? My last game was more than a year ago against brother captain james. My concerns.
  • I've never played a 2k game before, so my painted armies might not support it well. I may have to paint up new units.
  • A 2k army can be hard to transport if it is tank heavy.
  • I am rusty with the rules so I need a simple army with few tricks that I can start practicing with now
I could play BA, IG, or DA. BA are currently my favorite painting army, but they require a real list, which I am going to get some help with. However, through the wonders of Army Builder, I've put together an alternate Dark Angels dual-wing army list. Could a mostly foot DA list work?
  • Belial lightening claws
  • Librarian in terminator armor
  • x5 Terminator squad
  • ravenwing fast attack with bike and land speeder
  • ravenwing support squadron (1 land speeder)
There are no tanks, but a lot of teleport homers on bikes. In the past my tanks always evaporated first turn anyway, so why not just leave them home and save the effort. Do I need more troops? Should it be a terminator only army?