Monday, May 16, 2011

Troll Impaler Painted Pics

Here are a few pics of the Impaler I finished up after the Mauler.  I liked this model a lot until I started painting it.  There are tons of little details in there that required different colors.  I am not the most creative person when it comes to color schemes/theory.  I just tried to keep all the details toned down and make the skin bright and colorful so it pops on the table.  Mostly earthy tones of browns and brownish greens, plus dirty metal.

Too bad the skin color is a mix I made up 6 years ago and I have no idea how to replicate it.  At the time I made 3 successive layers of color and a wash for a Lizardmen army that never really got off the ground.  So, check out the really sunny pics.

Over the weekend I made some great progress on the Axer.  Just a few more washes on the metal to get the look I'm after and then highlighting of skin and finishing the base.  So, hopefully another hour and he'll be finished.  This will finish my 15 pt list, except for painting pMadrak.  I will probably save my warlocks for last and just start on a unit next to get away from the beasts for a while.

Below is a pic of my Hordes gaming case with the models I have currently built and painted.  I will have to upgrade my case when I build the stack of models I just purchased though.  I'm not sure where I want to go next on the painting after completed Axer.  Krielstone Bearer and Scribes, another beast, or something I haven't even built yet.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Dire Troll Mauler Painted Pics

Finally got around to snapping some pics of the Dire Troll Mauler I finished up a while back.  This is one of my favorite Privateer Press sculpts and probably the one that drew me into their games and Trolls especially.  He is awesome looking with an extremely dynamic pose.  

I'm not really used to painting models this large, so it was quite an endeavor.  I started by airbrushing basecoat since the model is 90% muscle.  I then blacked out all the details and went to work.  Taking the pictures outside washed out a little bit of the more extreme highlights, but I think you can still see most of the depth of color.

The hardest part was picking a color for the bony/stony/? protrusions coming from his skin.  I ended up just giving them a coat of gloss varnish.  This served two purposes.  First, it keeps the paint from rubbing off on these sharp bits that get handled most during gaming.  This was a huge plus.  Also, it kinda self highlights, so it saved me some work.  

If I ever finish painting my battlegroup I will get the lightbox out for some family photos.  With spring here, I have been super busy outside doing yardwork and gardening when I'm not working or playing with the children.  Hope to get some my half-started Axer finished soon.  I also have lots more Trolls purchased that need building. I wish I didn't hate metal models so much.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Grey Knights vs Salamanders - 'Ardboyz Practice Game

Lately, I have been spending some time trying to come up with a list I want to take to 'Ardboyz this year.  And yeah, yeah I know 2,500 pts you can take whatever you want.  And while this is true, so can everyone else.  To me it is much harder to make a strong all-comers list that can win at 2,500 as it is almost impossible to include something to take down whatever the opponent will bring.  In smaller games, like 1,500, you only have to be ready for the 2 or 3 best units from each codex, because that is what the competitive guys will spam.  IMO.

Finally, I had a chance to get in a game with reklawsj to test the list I wrote up.  He finally finished his college career, so now has a short break before real life starts.  He wanted to test a Grey Knights list he wrote up so he could tweak for the tournament in August.  He has made it to semis the last two years using his Salamanders and wanted a change.  I finished 4th two years ago with Chaos and 3rd last year with IG to get into semis, where we both got owned, haha.

My most recent list thoughts have included being on the opponent as early game as possible with as much of my army as possible.  Not necessarily an alpha-strike concept, just a you now need to deal with this half of my army now, and when you do, the other half arrives.  This is a tough concept to explain and even harder to find a codex that does this effectively.  For this year, I finally decided on a Vulkan list with a side of Shrike.

My list consists of:

Shrike with 10 TH/SS termies infiltrating
Vulkan with 5 TH/SS termies in LR Redeemer
3 units of Tactical Marines in Rhinos with combi-melta, meltagun, multimelta
1 unit of Scouts with combi-melta/meltabomb Srg in Landspeeder Storm with Multimelta
3 Attack Bikes with Multimelta
2 Landspeeders with Multimelta/Heavy Flamers
1 Dreadnought with Multimelta/Heavy Flamer in Drop Pod

His Grey Knight List consisted of:

Coteaz with Henchmen in Chimera(psykers and plasmacannons)
3 Strike Squads with 10 dudes in Rhinos - 2 psycannons, some hammers, halberds, etc
2 Interceptor Squads with 10 dudes - 2 psycannons and few hammers in each
2 Techmarines with Orbital Relays
Dreadnought with lascannons
Think that is all

We learned a lot about our lists and a lot about the Grey Knights at once.  We played Spearhead deployment with 3 objectives.  I had first turn, but got seized by Coteaz, this hurt.  I had scouted by Storm up for the alpha attack and had Shrike with buddies in open 18" out.  After Grey Knights first turn, the Storm was a wreck(Chimera), the Redeemer was exploded(Vindicare made this look easy), a Rhino was immobilized(psycannons are good), and I had lost 2 termies from Shrikes unit(misc shooting).  The only good part was his psykers rolled boxcars and all died.  I was pretty down after this turn, before I even started to play.  Funny, because my army is all about this same principle.  Devastate opponent early on and overwhelm his side of board before game starts for him.  Irony.  I think I told him too much of my plan when I came up with the list.

We decided to continue, thinking that if I could pull this one out the list had some balls.  Keeping this short, I essentially just ran both units of termies as fast as possible toward him.  Dreadnought dropped, missed, died.  Shrike charged a unit and was mercilessly cut down by daemon hammers after killing only 3 dudes.  I isolated the right half of the board using the termies as tarpits.  I had one objective easily on right flank and tried to contest another on left, but he cut down my unit.  He used a shunt move from an Interceptor squad to slow down another one of my units going for the middle objective, while he tank-shocked through my termies with a Strike Squad to take the objective in his fifth turn.  We timed this game so knew this was end game.  I used my Attack bike to run to left objective and contest, one down.  For the middle unit, I was able to pop rhino with bikes, and assaulted strike squad with termies pulling them from objective.  The Interceptor squad was annihilated by hammers and  Vulkan.

So, end game saw me having one objective and contesting the other two.  Awesome game with huge swings of luck and dice rolling.  Mine were terrible early, but heated up.  I must have made at least 50 saves on the termies with another 30 storm shield saves made.  At end game I still had 7 of the 15 remaining, keeping in mind all of these walked across the board.

What did we learn?  I learned why he always plays Salamanders, Vulkan is awesome.  All those re-rolls are invaluable in a game using dice.  Shrike and his unit didn't take tons of early game fire as I hoped.  Of course, he knew I wanted them to absorb everything while the rest of the army got into position, so he didn't fall for it.  The list did well even without the LR, the Storm and Scouts died immediately and the dreadnought whiffed.  This will not keep any of these out though, because the Storm is cheap and can gain it's points back three-fold in right situation as goes for the the dreadnought.  I want more practice games is all.

On the Grey Knight side we saw a few things.
Vindicare Assassin is a must in any list, he kills things, anythings.

Techmarines with Orbital Relays - Overhyped for sure, don't think after 10 shots they even killed a model.  Bolster defences would have been nice, but I never shot at these units.

Grey Knights need to sit and shoot until time comes to pull out their power weapons and go to work on leftovers.  They die like marines, but can get the jump on you with those halberds.  I think would have been more effective if my armor saves weren't on fire with the storm shields.

Dreadnought was fine until I hit him in head with a hammer.  My list lacked any psykers and little shooting so didn't see fortitude or aegis at work.

Fun times for sure, even with crappy first turn for me, I can't wait to see what he comes up with next.  The Grey Knights book has potential, it will just take some games to figure them out.  I do wish the psyker squad had performed better as I think they would have helped thin the termies down alot.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

"Hobby List of the Week": Psyker Bomb Grey Knights

Games Workshop Coteaz

Today's hobby list of the week will expand on the idea I posted about last week of running an all inquisitor army with henchmen.  Each of the units rely heavily on the psykers in the unit to throw out a large blast template of Str 10 AP 1.  The list below is what I quickly came up with incorporating this idea and other firepower.  The Henchmen loadouts can all be changed to suit you taste and orientation toward some CC ability and/or more shooting.  The psykers only take up one fire point of the five offered by a Chimera so you can have 4 more guns shooting from hatch.  However, some of these could be wasted if you use the template to shoot at a large tank and have the chimera full of heavy bolter servitors.  

Psyker Bomb - 2,000 pts

Coteaz plus retinue of henchmen
  7 Psykers
  3 Plasma Cannon Servitors
  1 Acolyte - Plasmagun/Power Armor
Chimera Transport

Ordo Malleus Inquisitor plus retinue of Henchmen
  Hell Rifle
  Power Armor
  3 Servo Skulls
  Daemon Blade
7 Psykers
3 Hvy Bolter Servitors
1 Crusader
Chimera Transport

Henchmen #1
7 Psykers
3 Multi-melta Servitors
2 Arco-Flagellants
Chimera Transport

Henchmen #2
7 Psykers
3 Hvy Bolter Servitors
2 Daemonhosts
Chimera Transport

Henchmen #3
7 Psykers
3 Acolytes with Meltaguns
2 DC Assassins
Chimera Transport

Henchmen #4
7 Psykers
2 Crusaders
3 Daemonhosts
Chimera Transport

Henchmen #5
7 Psykers
3 Arco Flagellants
2 DC Assassins
Chimera Transport

Henchmen #6
7 Psykers
2 Acolytes with Plasmaguns
1 Acolytes with Plasmagun/Power Armor
1 Jokaero
1 Banisher
Chimera Transport

Culexus Assassin

Vindicare Assassin

2,000 pts
18 Killpoints
6 Scoring Units
98 models
8 Chimeras

The last article goes over most of the tactics and how Coteaz plays a huge role in the alpha strike capabilities of this army, allowing re-rolls for Seize and forcing re-rolls for opponent if they happen to seize.  This is huge.  If this army goes first it can throw down 8 large blast templates of Str 10 AP 1, 24 multilaser shots and 24 heavy bolter shots from Chimeras, plus shots from other guys inside Chimeras.  Downside is all the templates are after leadership  tests.

With the psyker blasts being Assault weapons you can roll on in Dawn of War and still fire to full effect.  The Vindicare Assassin is a major nuisance in this list and hopefully will make an important kill early game to frustrate opponent into firing at him instead of the real army.  The Culexus Assassin is in the list to come in from reserve after opponent closes and shoot them in the face with Animus Speculum.  With so many Psykers on the board it should be easy to get 20 or even 30 shots from this at Str 5 AP 1.

On the modelling side this is a great army.  There are so many conversion opportunities for the henchmen and the loadouts can change easily as the pt values for most are the same.  I used a lot of different henchmen instead of spamming the same ones over and over as I feel the effectiveness is not much different.  Also, would get boring building this many dudes if all were same.  Of course, the list would probably be better if you just filled out Chimeras with 4pt Acolytes after the seven Psykers and used the points to get a Dreadknight or some Grey Knights of some flavor, but for now I like the smattering of henchmen in this Radical Inquisition force.

I have a tendency to roll low dice all the time, so this list would be beneficial to someone like me.  The lower you roll on the leadership test, the more templates you fire each turn.  Also, the lower you roll on scatter rolls, the better your game will be.  So, in a game where everyone wants to roll sixes, you can play this army and hope for lots of twos.  Will definitely be a different feel at the table when you're always yelling, "Come on twos" the whole game.  And the more twos you roll, the more games you will win.  If like me you suck with dice, this could be your army.