Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Picking a faction - A NOOBs guide to Warmachine part 2

Picking a faction for Warmachine

As I said in the previous post, don’t rush into this. Play some games with friend’s models, learn the basics, read up on the factions and find what suits you best. 

I recommend starting small, with a battlegroup or warpack and building up your force relatively slowly. This will allow you to get a feel for what you like to play and not waste buckets of cash on models you won’t use. 

I’ll run through the factions quickly to give you an idea of what they are about. Consider this a starting point to look further into making your own decision. Actually…. That’s a good point. Make sure you play what you want to play and not what you’re told is “SUPER OMG AWESOME POWERED”.
I'll briefly talk about each faction, I won’t talk at much length about the warlock/casters as.... well... they are all so individual. There really isn't a "standard generic" caster for any faction. I'll just talk about some broad themes, and in some cases I’ll be dead wrong as I'm not an expert.   

Circle Orboros
Vicious Druids leading armies of feral monsters  

Why would I play Circle? 

If you like the idea of a hard hitting, fast moving force the Circle Orboros could be perfect for you. Also, if you like pagan blood rites and/or Morris dancing these guys could be right up your alley. 

What do they look like? 

The imagery for the Circle Orboros is made of a mixture of Celtic Druids, Werewolves, Barbarians, Tree Monsters, Hunters and Miniature Stonehenge’s. 

They are pretty much medieval eco-terrorists. If you like your models looking feral and barbaric, these guys are the way to go.  
How do they Play?

The Circle is all about speed and controlling battlefield terrain. Many of their troops have pathfinder, which allows them to move through rough terrain quickly. The Circle has ways to create forests on the board, slowing down their opponents but not themselves. They also have some ways of quickly moving troops around the board, such as teleportation stones. 

Circle beasts fall into two categories, fast and deadly (living) or slow and tough (constructs). Their infantry focuses on speed and accuracy over heavy armour and firepower.

Circle are considered a "high skill" faction by many people, as many units fall into the "glass cannon" category. Amazingly effective when used well, but if unsupported, they die very quickly. 

Honourable do-gooders with cannons and lightning.   

Why would I play Cygnar? 

If you like ranged firepower and high tech weapons, Cygnar is the faction for you. If you ever think “this unit would be much better if it had more guns… and lightning”… then Cygnar is the one for you. Also, if you like putting your fingers in electric sockets and have a picture of Nikola Tesla on your wall…. You’re probably a Cygnar player.  

What do they look like? 

Cygnar troops are a mix of Gritty World War I style ground pounding infantry, pistol wielding trenchcoat wearing Gun Mages, medieval knights and dudes wearing electrical power armour. That sounds like an odd mix but it does work. Just think of technology as another form of magic and its fine. 

Cygnar Warjacks have similar themes, ranging from gun platforms through to shield carrying/spear wielding melee monsters. Cygnar jacks tend to be quite mobile and moderately armoured. Their best traits are usually high tech kit, like massive guns or electrical projectors.  

How do they play?

You can play a Cygnar army full of melee troops, but it would be non-typical. Cygnar’s strength is with its guns. The key thing to understand is that you probably won’t shoot anyone off the board. Your firepower should be used to whittle down the opponent and snipe out the key targets. The key is to inflict enough damage with your firepower to win the assaults that come after. 

Cygnar tends to have expensive units too, guns come with premium pricing and you will almost always be out numbered. Cygnar are also pretty good at killing opponents Warcasters, as all that ranged firepower can easily be brought to bear on one target. (Note, this is how I win all my games as Cygnar, seems I suck at scenarios with complex rules but can kill casters)

Convergence of Cyriss 
Art-deco technomages and clockwork constructs    

Why would I play Convergence? (CoC)

When you watched the Terminator, Battlestar Galactica and the Cybermen from Dr Who, were you cheering for the robots? Does the idea of a ordered society ruled by the law of SCIENCE! appeal to you? Do you really like the imagery of Metropolis?

If you answered yes to the questions above you are probably already worshiping Cyriss the Clockwork goddess and should pick up a damned army.

It's worth noting that PP have said that CoC is not a "main" faction and may not be getting as many updates as the others in the future. If the idea of having a list that will expand slower than others appeals, then CoC sounds like a good option for you. Also good if you just want to get in on the newest thing,

What do they look like? 

Giant art deco robots.......

Yep, its pretty much an entire robot army, but that has a lot of possibilities from tiny killer robots, to colossal killer robots.

They also have some breathtaking winged models as well.

How do they play?

From my limited exposure to this list it's hard to say much more than this.

They seemed to be quite jack focussed and their jacks stats and abilities change based on the Warcaster. They are extremely focus efficient compared to most other Warmachine factions as they can pass off some focus to another jack when they spend it. Coordination and timing of attack sis integral to the CoC game style. They don't seem to be a faction where you can really run off models by themselves to do wacky things.

Beyond that, I can't comment much more until i play them some.

Evil techno-necromantic undead with a side helping of piracy

Why would I play Cryx? 

Are you a ruthless evil bastard? If you answer YES, YES I AM, AND I HATE PUPPIES! Then Cryx is certainly a faction for you.  Cryx is a high risk/high reward faction with a list of dirty tricks as long as your arm. If Resurrecting forces, making them invisible and incorporeal, launching magic attacks from any angle, cursing and using people souls and corpses against them sounds like a good time, then Cryx should appeal. 

What do they look like? 

The undead of the Iron Kingdoms are a little different, there’s a lot of steam powered necromancy, big dark gothic soul engines and undead with mechanical parts. They also have a good number of nautical themed units to appeal to those of you who wish to play “Ghost Pirates” 

There is a Gigeresque biomechanical feel to most of Cryx. Machine and dead flesh merged into horrid monstrosities. 

How do they play?

Cryx can play many ways and have many many options. Speed and numbers are two major strengths and Cryx can overwhelm with hordes of undead that refuse to stay down. They also have a lot of stealth and ghostly (incorporeal) units that are incredibly hard to deal with for some armies. 

A lot of Cryx powers are fuelled by corpses and souls; the more the kill the more powerful they become. This can lead to some devastating combos and Cryx Warcasters running around with godly amounts of power. They also have a high level of resurrection and replenishment mechanics. Sometimes, you have to kill a Cryx trooper a lot more than once. 

They also have these fast moving annoying little Warjacks called “bonejacks”. A lot of bonejacks have these things called Arc Nodes that allow their Warcaster to cast spells through them. This allows casters to sit back and use their bonejacks to attack from any number of annoying angles.  

Imperial Russians with REALLY BIG WARJACKS

Why would I play Khador? 

Consider the following scenarios and contemplate your response. 
1.)    Your opponent is dug in on a hill with long ranged weapons
2.)    Your opponent has a fast moving force and will try to outflank you
3.)    Your opponent has a horde of melee troops and is rushing at you

If you answer “I SMASH THEM FOR GLORIOUS MOTHER RUSSIA” to all scenarios, then Khador is the faction for you.  

What do they look like? 

The Warjacks are big hulking slabs of metal, the biggest and baddest machines in the setting. Khador doesn’t have light Warjacks, only super heavies. They are supported by men in “manowar” battlesuits, so their heavy infantry is almost the size of a light Warjacks. 

In addition to the battlesuit infantry they have a great range of other troops, including the winter guard (soviet peasant soliders), Widowmakers (Soviet peasant snipers), greylords (Mages with furhats and massive beards!) and Reavers (masked maniacs with enchanted swords). 

You really have to like big armour and fur hats is all I’m saying. 

How do they play?

Khador looks like an Iron fist faction. But they do tend to play a little differently to that. For the most part, you are unlikely to field more than 1 or 2 of their big stompy powerful warjacks. And while the big power armoured infantry look cool, lighter infantry tends to be the core of the average Khador force.
Many of their Warcasters allow their otherwise slow Warjacks to move with disturbing alacrity. And they hit as hard as anything in the game. They lack arc-nodes and ways to project spells, so casters are either "sit back and command" types, or hand to hand monsters. No one in the Iron Kingdoms is scarier at close range than the Butcher, in all 3 of his incarnations.

So while Khador looks like a heavy jack army, in order to get the best out of your lumbering monsters they will need to be supported by infantry and buff. Khador also has one of the best "core" infantry units in the game and the levels of buffs that can be added to a regular group of "winter guard" is dazzling.

Legion of Everblight
Bioengineered and corrupt dark elves and dragonspawn

Why would I play Legion of Everblight? 

Ask yourself, who would win in an arm wrestle, you or God. If you answered you, WELCOME TO THE LEGION!  Everblight is an evil Dragon with a massive god complex, who corrupts everything he touches and loves bioengineering new and interesting forms. His followers are all mutated in some way and his beasts are his spawn.

If you really like creepy looking monsters covered in spikey bits, you’re gonna love the Legion. If you also like creepy dark elves you’re also gonna like them. And if you’re the guy who cheers for the serial killer in horror movies …. well enough said really. 

What do they look like? 

Kind of horrible really: The beasts are all giant eyeless monsters with very big fangs and claws. Some are built very solidly, like walking biomechanical warmachines, whereas others are lithe and nimble. Some of them slither like snakes and some fly. All in all, the unifying theme is creepy dragon monsters. 

The infantry fits into three major categories:

·         Corrupt Dark elves; wearing light armour, moving quickly and carrying deadly weapons,
·         Corrupt Ogres; wearing heavy armour, moving slowly and carrying really deadly weapons.
·         Really Corrupt things. Creatures that are so deformed and mutated you don’t really know what they started as….. carrying a range of weapons.

How do they play?

The Legion are fast moving and have very good ranged firepower.  Their signature power is eyeless sight, which allows them to ignore smoke/forests and other forms of concealment. So if your opponents thinks cowering in trees or behind smoke grenades will keep them safe, they are very much mistaken. 

The Legions beasts have some devastating ranged attacks, but they can also back that up in melee quite well, not the toughest beasts in the game but the combination of speed, ranged firepower and melee strength more than compensates for their below average toughness. They also have access to cheap tiny warbeasts that can swarm and are annoying hard to kill for very cheap models.

The Legion hits hard and plays dirty. They also have a lot of fury management skills that mean they can run more warbeasts than other factions. In fact, some people play with only a handful of troops and all beasts. 

Mercenaries and Minions
War pigs, Sell swords, renegades, rogues, pirates, dwarves and Voodoo Gatormen

It’s pretty much impossible to do justice to both mercenaries and minions in a few paragraphs, just because of the variety of models and units. What I will mention is some of the themed forces available, and let you dig deeper if any of them appeal
  • Steelhead force  - Prototypical mercenaries, hardened soliders fighting for coin
  • Highborn Covenant – Displaced nobility fighting to reclaim a homeland
  • Magnus – Rogue Cygnar warcaster on a crusade against his homeland
  • Privateers – Pirates, complete with nautical warjacks and deck guns
  • Searforge – Power armoured dwarves with mining warjacks
  • Thornfall alliance – Pig men and biomechanical pig monsters
  • Blindwater – Voodoo gatormen and swamp monsters
  • Cephylax - Evil mind controlling morlocks from the underearth. 

If any of these weird and wacky themes touches you in that special place, look into it more. One cool thing about mercenaries and minions is they can be used in other forces as supplemental troops. Mercenaries tend to work for Warmachine factions and Minions for Hordes factions. 


Protectorate of Menoth
Religious zealots with a thing for suffering and fire.   

Why would I play the Protectorate? 

Is your back covered in welts from where you flagellate yourself? Does smiting infidels fill you with intense pleasure? And do you consider fire a close personal friend? If you answered yes to any of those questions, pick up a Protectorate of Menoth battlebox on your way to the asylum. 

What do they look like? 

Well, to put it bluntly, the protectorate look like crusaders in power armour carrying massive icons and plenty of napalm. 

There are numerous orders of knights within the Protectorate and they wear different suits of ornate armour. The warjacks are solid looking and tend to be decorated with religious iconography. 

Plenty of the models carry censers, tomes, banners and icons. There are a lot of cool details to paint if you are inclined to.  

How do they play?

The Protectorates strengths are their holy magic, solid warjacks, units of knights and ridiculous amounts of fire throwing weapons. They can be the most resilient force in the game, using their combination of hardy armour and defensive magic to create a solid block that is difficult to budge.

The Protectorate has interesting effects within units. For example, one unit can share damage amongst themselves, and another gets tougher for each one of its members that die.  There are also buff units like the choir that can make warjacks immune to ranged attacks. Your statlines tend to be quite low, but this is more than made up for by special effects and buffs.

Denial is another strong suit, and Menoth have numerous counters to many tactics. From preventing shooting, to increasing the cost of spells, to making units immune to magic. Menoth can shut down a lot of options for their opponents. 

Retribution of Scyrah
Xenophobic warrior elves who hunt mages and use power fields

Why would I play The Retribution? 

If you have a thing for elves, and I understand a lot of people do, then this is your faction. That being said, these guys aren’t your prototypical elves. They are on a crusade to wipe out humanities mages and are really good at doing it. If you like high tech weapons, cool armour and elves being ninja assassins, then the retribution should work for you. 

What do they look like? 

There are two major themes in the models for the Retribution. One is the mage hunters and other sneaky units, they tend to wear long flowing coats and carry an assortment of sharp stabby things and crossbows. The other theme is the dawnguard, and they wear big suits of high tech looking armour and carry weapons like gunblades. 

The warjacks (or Myrmidons) of the Retribution have a lot of smooth lines and look very high tech compared to the steam belching monstrosities of the other factions. 

How do they play?

The Retribution is a pretty elite force, you’re almost always going to be outnumbered. Their infantry is pretty solid and can multi-role quite well, but they tend to be quite expensive compared to other factions. Your solos are quite good as well, many fast moving hard hitting units that are hard for enemies to hit.

The warjacks are on the expensive side for what they do, but they do have some impressive armaments and powerfields which can regenerate during battle. That being said, the strength is in your units and solos and the Warjacks should be complimentary to these guys…. Also, most of your casters excel at assassinating the other players casters.

Later release Warjacks have considerably improved retribution, and i now feel their jacks are on par with most other factions.

Skorne Empire
Inhuman and vicious sadomasochists from the east     

Why would I play Skorne Empire? 

If you have a thing for brutality and pain then Skorne is for you as these guys are nasty pieces of work. Its all about pain and suffering, cutting yourself and blood/death/pain magic. If you like a faction with an incredibly brutal play style that says “I’m gonna mess you up” then Skorne could be for you. 

What do they look like? 

The Skorne Empire looks like an organized martial force, albeit  an inhuman one. Their soliders are well armed and well equipped and they can carry some of the heaviest armour in the game. Other units look like sword wielding maniacs who cut themselves. All in all they have a very “middle eastern” look to them. They also have units that are golems animated by the souls of dead warriors, these things look like giant killer statues. 

The beasts are wild animals that the skorne have trained (abused) to fight for them. They have basilisks, Cyclops and Titans (like 6 armed elephants). Their beasts are armoured and most have been taught to carry weapons. Some, like the Cyclopes, look like super heavy infantry models with their heavy armour and big swords. 

How do they play?

Brutally! Well, I’ve seen two major themes with the Skorne. One is the Brick of doom, where the Skorne force is made up of the toughest nastiest units they can field. This massive wall of meat and steel implacably advances towards the enemy and just wears them down in a battle of attrition.

The other approach is to be more mobile and to create a fast moving strike force that hits incredibly hard. Skorne have many tricks that allow their other ponderous Titans to move with distributing speed across the battlefield.

Skorne also has a tendency to have effects that damage or kill their own units in order to gain powerful advantages. A strong emotion attachment to your warriors and beasts is not encouraged. 

One thing is sure, the Skorne empire is unlikely so just sit back and wait for the enemy. This is a faction that loves getting its hands dirty. They also have many effects that are powered by death, so getting stuck in helps fuel their power.

Trolls of all sizes fighting for their freedom and a homeland.  
Why would I play the Trollbloods? 

If you really like the idea of downtrodden people forming together to create their own homeland in the face of horrid oppression, then the trolls could be for you. Also, if you like the idea of giant slabs of flesh and rock who eat people, then you will also like the trolls. Practice singing the line “I get knocked down, but I get up again, you aint never gonna get me down”.

What do they look like? 

Trollbloods are a grouping of peoples. They start with very small pygmy trolls, who possess low cunning and rifles. The core of the force are trollkin, who are slightly larger than humans, and equally intelligent. The Trollbloods are an interesting mixture of Scottish themes and Cygnar guns. In the story Cygnar gave them some left over weapons, crud they didn’t want. What Cygnar didn’t expect was for them to don their war kilts, crab the bagpipes and carry in their arms weapons normally reserved for gun emplacements.

The hard hitting part of the force are the full blooded trolls and dire trolls, and these guys can get pretty big. Trolls come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some are rather intelligent and have learned to wear armour and carry weapons. Others have changed and warped based on their environments…. For example a troll who lives on volcanic rocks changes over time to be immune to heat and can belch fire. 

How do they play?

Trollbloods are tough, tough as nails. Every single unit has someway of healing damage or recovering from being killed. THIS CAN ANNOY THE STUFFING OUT OF OPPONENTS! Nothing is more frustrating that shooting the same guy 10 times while screaming “WHY WONT YOU DIE”. Of course, the reverse can happen and none of your guys will make regeneration rolls. Its very hit and miss.

Dire Trolls are as nasty as anything in the game, they hit like mack trucks, have massive strength and can regenerate. Normal Trolls are also very hardy for light warbeasts.

The troops are a mix of magical buffs guys (FROM MAGIC RUNES DAMMIT) , melee guys (Think braveheart… if they were all 8 foot tall trollkin) and guys carrying army surplus (More 8 foot guys…. Carrying really big guns). Most models are medium base sized, which means your forces take up a lot of space.

It all combines to create a force that can do just about any battlefield role, while being quite tough to remove in the process. 


Well holy footy sock down the jocks batman, that was a huge post. I'm gonna continue this series, next i'll look at what you need to start playing and those first few games.

See also

Part One -  An Introduction to Warmachine and Hordes

Read this to see if the game is for you

Some helpful advice on what things to pay attention to during your first few games. Or.... how I learned not to suck so hard. 

A quick highlight of the differences between the two systems, what they have in common and how they differ. 

A quick guide with some advice on how to put together an army list, and some of the common pitfalls new players fall into. 

Part Six - Tournaments for Noobs

Considering going to your first tournament? Don't be too scared, read the helpful guide!

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

A NOOBs guide to Warmachine - Part One


I’ve only been playing Warmachine for a few months now, and I think I’ve learned a fair bit in that time thanks to some excellent mentoring from the local community (Shout out to Sean and Chris O in particular).

I thought I would write about getting into the hobby, what it’s about, how to get started and if the hobby would be right for you. 
This is one NOOB talking to the rest of the NOOBs out there…. come join us!


Throughout I will refer to the whole game system as Warmachine. Hordes is a valid part of the game system and should be counted as an equal player. The issue is I can’t be bothered typing Warmachine and Hordes every time, and the conjoined twin variant “Warmahordes” is just a bit naff. If they do a third edition they should end the brand diversity…. This isn’t Smackdown vs Raw people! 
Would I like Warmachine?

So, you’ve seen the models and heard people talking about the game of Warmachine and your thinking, “hey, what the heck is this crazy game….. can I play the space marines?”

 Well, no, no you can’t. You can do a lot more than that.

At its core Warmachine is a skirmish game. It’s designed to work best with a small number of units fighting a close encounter battle. It’s brutal, bloody and quick. Games can turn in a second and there is an inherent natural tension that runs through the game, once false move and you’re in for a world of hurt. 
Its about epic characters leading small forces of giant steam belching Warjacks or monstrous beasts of war. 
This is a Warbeast
If you like games where you sit on a hill and rain death on people with massive howitzers, this isn’t the game for you. 
If you like games where you command hundreds of models in big units, this isn’t the game for you. 
If you like games where you can play the same way, using the same tactics every game and win, you will really hate this game.

If you are risk adverse and just want to stay in cover and shoot…. Then this really isn’t the game for you. Seriously, standing and shooting doesn’t win you many games…. I should know!

It is one game where you can have as much fun in a loss as you do in a win though.

How do I start playing this game?

First of all, try and find someone who knows how to play. It’s much easier to learn off a veteran. There are also people called "press gangers" who work as community leaders for the hobby. Ask at your local games store or check out the privateer press forums to find your local press ganger. If you're in sunny New Zealand check out Thrall Blacks, our community page.

If its just you and a few friends, consider buying some battlegroups or warpacks, these are cheaper than normal boxes that contain one hero and a few warjacks/beasts for that faction. They are a really good place to start. You may also consider the two player battlebox as well. 
I would recommend playing a few "battlebox" games with an experienced player to learn if the game is for you and what army you might like to field. Battlebox games are short, small, fun games where you have one hero character and 2-4 Warjacks or Warbeasts. It's the best way to learn and will give you an idea if you want to go further.
Should I pick Hordes or Warmachine, what faction to play?

Don’t make this decision too early is all I can say, I’ll go into selecting a faction later. There are two major differences in the two games. One is the aesthetics of how the models look. The other is more complicated and involves two major mechanics in the game (Focus/Fury). That distinction is probably too complex to go into here, and doing so probably wouldn't be much help without a few games experience.
Look at the faction models, talk to friends, play a few demo games before making that decision. 
The worst thing is to commit to playing a faction based solely on how they look and then finding out they really don't work for you. 

What’s a Warmachine army look like?

As I said before, this is a skirmish game. Most games played consist of one hero and their retinue going toe to toe with each other. 
Your force starts with your hero character. In Warmachine forces this is the Warcaster, in Hordes force this is the Warlock (for shorthand, I’ll use caster to describe these characters). You pick one of these heroic individuals to be the star of your force and pick the rest of the army to suit them. Each hero has a spell list, weapons, abilities and a once per game special ability called a feat. The variety amongst caster is huge, and playing the same faction, with the same troops and a different caster will be a very different experience. 
Some casters are mighty warriors in their own right, who’s main contribution to your force is through their own sheer combat ability. Some are focused on spell casting and may sit back, deep in your lines cast spells at people. Others are inspiring leaders that increase the effectiveness of their forces. Most are a combination of all three skills sets. 
Once you pick a caster that’s right for you (more on that later) you pick some Warjacks (for warcasters) or Warbeasts (for Warlocks) to be their personal battlegroup. Warjacks are towering steam belching juggernauts made of iron and steel, they are controlled via Warcaster magic and can be considered and extension of their caster in many ways . Warbeasts are bound to their warlock, and the Warlock feeds of their rage to power their spells. Battlegroups need to stay relatively close to their caster to have maximum effectiveness (outside of range, the caster cannot control them well)

After picking the battlegroup you can fill the army out with units and solos. Units are your usual war gaming standard and range from men in massive power armour suits carrying force hammers to small goblins armed only with an improvised smoke machine (I’m serious). Each force has a plethora of units to choose from. They key is to pick ones the work well together. Models within a units need to stick together during the game.  
Solos are lone models that operate independently of the battlegroup and units. They can be assassins, scouts, advisors, snipers, heroes, spellcasters and much more. Solos add an extra level of the game as they move around by themselves, not bound to any command ranges. 
One key thing to note is that you caster is your king. If your Warcaster/warlock dies you lose instantly. Some people hate that aspect of the game, but this is a game about heroes and if the hero snuffs it the story is over.

Next time I'll talk about picking a faction that suits you. I play Cygnar personally, that's mainly for the big guns and lightning.... as shown below.

See also

Warmachine and Hordes has a lot of options, figure out what one works for you

Some helpful advice on what things to pay attention to during your first few games. Or.... how I learned not to suck so hard. 

A quick highlight of the differences between the two systems, what they have in common and how they differ. 

A quick guide with some advice on how to put together an army list, and some of the common pitfalls new players fall into.

Considering going to your first tournament? Don't be too scared, read the helpful guide!


Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Descent - Painting the Altar of Despair!

First off, I must say that the Altar of Despair has some excellent new rules for the game. More treachery, crushing walls and Invulnerability potions are my favorites. but i'm here to talk about the monsters, and you get a good range here, far better than well of darkness.

Blood Apes

First up are the blood apes. I took a simple approach with theses guys, perhaps too simple as I think the red looks a bit mediocre. I'm also not a fan of the narrow oval bases.

In game these guys are devastating. Very tough for how many you can bring in with a spawn card and the leap ability can cause players massive headaches if they a not ready. They also hit very hard and are solid melee monsters. The masters are signified by having a darker and bigger red stripe on their backs.

Dark Priests!

Now we are cooking with gas (or unholy power). I can't help but do a Darth Sidious impression when I attack with these guys. Something about rolling all those power dice makes me want to scream "UNLIMITED POWER!"

A nice simple base coat and ink wash effect with these guys works wonders. red robes = Bad ass powers!

Deep Elves

Not dark elves.... nope. Deep elves... must be into transcendental meditation or something.

These guys rock and my players hate them. Something about the master having more piercing damage than any character has armour just makes them shudder.... that and you cant stand back and shoot them from range. A great unit for game supported griefing of players. Master is wearing a red robe of course.

Chaos Beasts

These guys are tough, and a little odd to use. Its a case of pick whatever dice you want to use at any given time.... although invariable this leads to using the green heavy damage dice.

The models are rather nasty to look at and I painted them in flesh tones. Flesh colour just adds to the "WHAT AM I LOOKING AT" factor. The master is designated by its little pink primary tentacles. Subtle, but you very rarely have more than one on the table.


I love classic monsters, and trolls are a quintessential bad guy in dungeon crawlers. I'm slightly surprised they don't regenerate,which would have been nice. They do, however, hit as hard as anything in the game. I've had one kill a character even though he took an invulnerability potion (something like 17 damage on one roll.... obscene!)

Paint job was simple, these guys respond really well to inks and dry brushing. Master has a red hair do!

Right, only one more post to go for Descent and I'm done!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Latest project

Right, so last night I battled the evil superglue monster and vanquished the horrid green stuff beast in order to assemble the next batch of models to paint.

In there I have Sam and the devil dogs, a unit of rangers (who had bent/broken guns grrrrr), Victor Pendrake, Arlan Strangeways, the female jnr warcaster, a gun mage captain, Captain Caine, Captain Murdoch, Constance Blaize, Gallant, Thorn, a sentinal and a heavy omni jack.

I've already made a small conversion to Gallant, by adding in some back banners. I'll paint him at the same time as Blaize to ensure continuity.

Thorn is a model I would like to do something different with. I want him to look part of the army, but clearly stand out as a character model. The precursor knights have given me an idea for Thorn (Not them personally, as my models don't actually send me messages or talk to me....... often).

Next step is to sculpt some custom bases and muck around with sand. Then on to the spray painting desk for a good seeing to!

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

In Morrows name!


It feels like I have been painting this unit for an eternity. The underpainting worked well on them, the armour is pretty much only a light chainmail coat and some ink. I also felt the underpainting helped with the white cloaks, if only to help me with shading and highlighting.

The shields are a second attempt. I had to rip them off and bathe them in dettol to remove the original, ineffective paint job. I had this idea of doing them as a sunburst, with red in the middle radiating out to yellow on the edges. It really didn't work out at all, so I went with a dark gold look instead.

The bases are also done differently, as Precursor Knights aren't technically 100% Cygnar units I wanted to make the designation clear. So I picked yellow for the front and a dark blue for the back. The writing on the front says "For Morrow" in the Cygnar language.

For final touches I also used some weathering powder to dirty up the cloaks a little.

Now I have to assemble something to paint..... I wonder what it will be. I'll give you a clue, the next model comes from the minions book.

Descent - Well of darkness

Well of darkness was a pretty cool expansion in a lot of ways. 6 pretty good heroes, treachery for the overlord, loads of new traps like rolling boulders and dart fields, and many little extras.

The only let down, compared to the other expansions was with the selection of new monsters. Kobolds, while amusing, aren't really very effective. The best they can do is act as a delaying tactic, but one heroes with breath or blast can clear them out very quickly.

The ferrox's are an effective creature, a good middle sized hard hitter. I suppose the issue with them is they don't have any real resonance. They don't invoke an classic feelings of D&D dungeon crawling, in the same way Ogres and Trolls do.

Finally, the best monster of the set, and one of my favorites in the whole game is the Golem. Hard as nails, and a classic dungeon monster, these things give players fits as the usual tactics don't work very well against them. They need to be taken down slowly, with lots of hard hits, but sniping them will rarely work as they are immune to pierce. they were also super fun to paint, undercoat, codex grey, black wash and then some detail work. All done in a very short amount of time.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

New Warcaster - pHaley

Well, first things first. I don't know if under painting really helped asides from giving me a better indication of where to highlight and shade.

I suppose the big development with this model for me is trying to build a custom base. It's not the best, but for a first go it's not he worst thing I could have done. I think I need more patience in putting a custom base together. that's the problem with working with  modeling clays, they can take ages to work.

Overall, I'm quite pleased with the look. Haley fits in with my Cygnar theme, but the raised base gives her a bit more presence. I do wish I had gotten the other Haley model though, its a mice nicer sculpt than this. The obscured face was a pain to paint.

Haley should hit the table shortly.... I don't think i should count the last time i used her.......

Friday, 10 February 2012


Just a quick update from me today, i've been on leave and busy doing garden work. You would think that being at home would make me blog more, but it doesn't. I've painted a fair bit while watching TV, and I hope to put up some pics of my precursor knights in the next few days..... if only I can get the shields looking right.

Reinholdt is one of my favorite characters in the Iron Kingdoms setting. Hes a gobbo, who claims to have adventured everywhere and seen everything. He is also an incredibly lucky SOB, a collector of random artifacts, and has an uncanny awareness of incoming personal harm. I reckon he also has a cocky accent, but that's me projecting.

In the game hes a handy 1 point mercenary that can follow around your warcaster giving assistance. Probably his biggest benefit is the ability to allow a caster to shoot one more time with their weapon, which will be very handy for a guy like Siege.

You'll also note that his base is done in a different colour to designate hes a mercenary.

At the same time as painting Reinholdt I did my mechanic and his gobbo assistants. A very cheap unit that can patch up Warjacks, and have been very useful in the one game i've used them... although that was mostly a luck thing rather than any inherent ability they had.

One annoying thing is that as these are metal, and a small unit you can easily see there are only two gobbo sculpts. To break that up a little I painted each gobbo in a slightly different scheme.

Next up, Precursor Knights! I HOPE!

Saturday, 4 February 2012

The really big news from Privateer press today - and It's not colossals

So, if you have been checking out the gaming blogs today you will have seen references and pictures of the Colosals. Super big warjacks that look amazing and will be centerpieces for both wargamers and hobby collectors.

I like them, I think they are amazing. But they are just models.

The really big news for me is in the technology space.

The War Room app for apple and android mobile devices is really the big news of the day for me.

Being able to build an army list, take it with you is a good start. Being able to record damage and effects on the cards in game is excellent. Being able to connect to another player and view their lists and damage/status effects in game is supurb.

But what makes it for me is the rules look up section with live erratas. Worried that a rule is buried deep in one of the many books and erratas? Don't want to carry a stack of books two foot high to games? You won't need to. Apparently, the app has more functionality they haven't discussed, so i'll be curious to read some reviews when it comes out.

Mobile device use is increasing dramatically and it wont be long before it's unusual not to have one. (For a 1st world gamer who can afford to spend money on model soldiers at least). That PP have recognized their is a market for this app, developed it, and are getting ready to release it shows they understand their market. Gamers are, as a rule, technology friendly. I can see this app being a must have, and in a few years a requirement at tournaments. It sure as heck beats bringing a list on a piece of a4 paper.

Here PP knows where gaming is going and isn't dwelling on where it has been.
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